Tracking The Nothing
It’s maddening trying to keep interested, busy and productive in the job search. The second month can really wear you down after you’ve shot your resume out there so many dozens of times, had endless conversations with recruiters, all resulting in nothing past “I’ll send it over and we’ll see.” Then no word and no real response when you follow up.
I understand. When I’m interviewing people I rarely contact the people who sent me the resumes to say “no thanks.” There are just too many. So the recruiters are generally not responding because they haven’t heard anything.
But in this pursuit, no news is bad news, so you keep a stiff upper lip and cheerfully check in while you keep looking.
Even the recruiter spam, which causes blood vessels to burst in my head “I have a great opportunity for a Satellite Dish technician in Arkansas that you’d be PERFECT for!” I now have to respond to with “Hey, thanks for the contact. That’s outside my range a bit, but I know a couple people I can forward this to along with your contact information. In the meantime, here’s another copy of my resume since you didn’t even glance at the first one I sent you, along with all the rest of the pertinent information you so brazenly ignored in sending me this spammy fucking tripe to begin with! Have a spectacular day and best of luck in filling that job you ignorant twit! I’m gonna go scream in my ramen noodles now.”
But I don’t really rip them a new one. I keep plugging away at amazon, new recruiter lists. I send introductions, make my calls, etc.
SO, “to keep myself honest” I’ve started logging what I’ve been doing. Not just on the job search itself, but a sort of tally of how I spent the day. Because it’s one of those things, when you’re at home in front of a computer for something horrifically close to 18 hours a day, with occasional guilt ridden forays in to the wood shop.
The original thought was I could easily wake up and have it be days, weeks or months later and have no specific memory of any of these individual days. So at LEAST put something down. The side effect, like when you track anything, is that somewhere in the back of your head you’re going to want that list to ’say good things’, and it’s going to figure in to your day and push you in the right direction in that passive aggressive sort of way that future accountability tends to.
What I’d started doing was taking an 8.5×11 notebook (one of the Staples arc notebooks rather than the Levengers Circa notebooks. The circa stuff is awesome, but there’s just no reason to charge those prices now that there are competing products that use exactly the same ring shape and spacing. Sure, the Circa paper is higher quality, but that’s just not enough of a reason) and, at the end of the day, put a dated entry and fill in a couple/few highlights of the day.
But I found myself cheating and skipping a day or two at a time (primarily because I’d been almost entirely unproductive), then going back and filling them in.
So instead I started keeping it next to me at the computer and filling it up with little notes and things during the day. So far so good.
Now that January’s over I took a look at the few pages of bullet items and realized the notebook is just too big for what I’m using it for, so I switched to one of those 5×9 inch smaller format notebooks starting for Feb. Plus, I think I’m going to lower the bar for what makes the cut to be worth tracking.
I figure it’ll be easier to manage and do a bit more to keep pulling me in the right direction.
If nothing else I’ll at least be able to put “blog post” on there for today.