When you’re going through a hard time, people often say “don’t worry, things will get better,” or “everything will fall into place.” But what if you’ve been waiting and things aren't getting any better?? I ask this question after several months of being unemployed. Last spring, I graduated from a prestigious university with a degree I worked my a** off to get, with lifelong stress caused by overly intense extracurriculars, pain I can’t seem to escape, friends I’d kill for – and no idea what I was doing next. Without knowing where to go or what to do, I continued working at the part-time job I’d acquired during my senior year. But I hated this job, and I hated everything about my life because of it. I hit a transition point where I could stay where I was and hate the world, or I could quit my job, move home and try to achieve my dreams. Even though I didn’t know what I wanted to do, I knew I couldn’t stay there. So, I quit. I’m absolutely certain that quitting my job was the right decision. However, I had not realized how destructive unemployment would be on my psyche. When you’re told for four consecutive years that your career is everything, you can’t help but feel worthless when you aren’t working. The more I applied for jobs I didn’t get, the more I felt like I was falling. I was falling and falling with the ground nowhere in sight. Photo: Giphy Months later, I often still feel crappy. When I interviewed last week for a job I can only describe as a role sent from the angels above, I was so nervous I could barely form coherent sentences. I’d started temping that same week (I gotta pay those student loans somehow) and didn’t have the time to obsess over everything I wanted to say. I finished that interview feeling like sh*t. I was devastated. That same day, Donald Trump swept the New York State primary after stirring up trouble at a rally in my town (Buffalo, NY) the night before. I felt hopeless, both for myself and for society. Photo: Giphy These are the times when people say things will get better. I try to believe them. But hearing that often make me feel worse. I’ve spent almost a year feeling terrible – if things are supposed to get better, I’d love to know when. When I’m at my wits end, I remind myself of the suggestions I give to friends who are struggling. None of that “don’t worry” bulls*t – only the things I’ve read or seen that actually help me when I’m most upset.
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