The Goldilocks of Qualified

I was going to write a completely different post today, but my sister asked what we should do with mum tomorrow for Mother’s Day. She suggested we buy mum something for the kitchen that she’s had her eye on for a while, but the thought of shelling out so much money right now twisted my stomach.

I recently left my part-time job at a retail store after two years as something better came along. However, when I got into the job I found out that it wasn’t what it seemed and it was going to be impossible for me to travel 5 or so hours there and back by train every day. For the past 2 months I’ve been searching high and low for another part-time job, as well as a job that will provide me with experience for my Master’s in Social Work. I currently volunteer for ChildLine on a Friday evening, which will be useful, but as I graduated from university in 2015 I’m positive the people looking at my application will wonder why I’ve only been volunteering since September 2016 and not done a single other thing.

Although I have a savings account, I prefer to look at it as a savings account. I don’t like to think of it as funds to dip into when my current account is getting low. They’re there for a reason and it’s not because nobody will hire me just yet. The stress of my money dwindling down and nobody hiring me because I am “under qualified” as well as “over qualified” is really getting to me lately.

For some context: I have a 2.1 BSc (Hons) in Psychology, 6 months volunteering experience in ChildLine, and 2 years retail experience. I’ve mostly been rejected from high-street stores, administrative positions, and receptionist jobs. Most recently, and my favourite example, is that I applied for a teaching assistant job. I was told I didn’t get the job because I don’t have any experience with children, thus I was considered under qualified. I thought that was totally fair enough, so I thought I’d apply to train as a teaching assistant. I was invited to interview and was told that because I have a degree, I am over qualified for this position. I’m hoping to find somewhere that considers me the Goldilocks of qualified.

My eternal optimism kicks in. I tell myself this is one of the world’s greatest ‘problems’ to have. I have enough money to have a savings account. I have enough experience to get my foot in the door at a lot of places. I have nothing but time to dedicate myself to the search. I have a supportive mother who understands why I didn’t go back to my old job with 2am starts in order to get experience with children for the pursuit of even higher education. I’ve literally been told I have too many qualifications to train for a job. How many people in the world would love to be told that? More than I’d like to think about, I’m sure.

Of course not being able to get a job right now is frustrating and the slow decline of my money is playing on my mind, but the stress I feel will only motivate me to do something about it. I tell everybody I meet that I’m looking for experience working with children so I can maybe find a connection. I am unbelievably lucky that I don’t have to make ends meet to survive.

I am very aware that my problem is that of the first world and I’m hoping it’s at least somewhat relatable to someone out there who may be reading this. We each have to find our own avenue to venture down. Someone will give you a chance… give us a chance. We just have to keep trying doors until we find one that opens. And if that doesn’t work, let’s try a window.

Eloise

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