‘Work-Shy’ Series Part 1: The Numbness of Unemployment

Some call it ‘the chase’. But it no longer resembles a race. Imagine if the city is filled with loads of doors, a bit like beehives. Yet slowly but surely, those holes keep getting plugged in.  And your navigating around and you don’t see many open hives anymore. That’s what looking for work felt like for nearly two years. Now I’m at it again. I say felt, in the past tense because it no longer feels like that. Perhaps there were moments in that other period of unemployment where it did. But since the feeling is quite raw – rawer than I initially considered it to be, I can’t help but describe it, barely anyway.

On Thursday, the culmination of a job application for a bank after nearly a week ended up with a telephone interview. One could say that it was the interview itself  was when my luck ran out. I refuse to believe that. It was a time when I got candid. Too candid. And too honest about my actual inspirations. As it was the interview, I got pressed on about it over the line until it got very uncomfortable, and I eventually hung up – then turning the phone off for ten hours. Fortunately, because my life is such a boring one, nobody called. If anything, more often, it’s the other way around. But through that day, I came towards a realisation. If I were to be more honest when applying for jobs like these, I’m probably not going to find work. But at the same time, I’ve reached a point where I’m, quite frankly, sick  of engaging in the pretenses. After reading a list of possible answers that I could have mentioned in order to clinch the opportunity to take it further (yes not even a guaranteed job yet), I figured that I could probably apply again next month. But later, I wondered, is there any job that our generation engages in to get by in this nation, that I’m going to be happy with?

I apparently have the skill set required to be a tutor if I wanted. Or at least that’s what I’ve been told. But how fair is it to spend time with children if your heart isn’t in it? Children need guidance, attentiveness and yes – nurturing. If someone can’t provide that, then what’s the point in being a teacher?

I’m just very uncertain about the rest of my twenties, and apparently, rather ineffectual about finding work. Even volunteering is becoming miserable, and reminded me of those ten uncomfortable minutes over the phone. This doesn’t mean that I don’t want to work. Or that I’ll stop altogether. I’d rather not give any reason to justify the idea of the ‘work-shy’ unemployed, popularised by former Minister for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith. But ‘working’ in these roles literally depresses me. It’s probably the old job that has come to inform my feelings towards it. I detest the idea of being overwhelmed again even more. A shame that it has to get in the way of earning an income.

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#anxiety, #depression, #jobless, #mental-illness, #the-rat-race, #unemployment