Working is a privilege, and whether employed outside my home, a stay-at-home wife and mother, or starting a new business, life has taught me a lot about getting and keeping a job. Humility is a word that first comes to mind when I think back on my job searches.
On the topic of humility, Norman Vincent Peale said, “Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.”
His words ring true with my experiences. No matter the age or the type of employment, I needed to believe I was an asset—I could make a positive difference for the business.
My first job other than babysitting and cleaning house was at Schafer Drugstore. I was fourteen. I kept asking the owner, and he kept saying, “I haven’t decided yet.” Every Tuesday after school, I went into the store and asked him if he had decided. He finally gave me the job—I wore him down. If nothing else, he knew I wanted the job. The pay was $.97/hour— I was rich!
Some jobs I snagged out of pure luck—I was the only one with the proper credentials, or I had past work experience in the skills required.
Once I had earned a high degree, jobs didn’t come so easy. The degree limited the available number of positions, the competition was fierce, the interviews grueling, and the process damaged my self-confidence. I had to practice humility because I could not afford to lose balance—belief in the truth of what I could and couldn’t do successfully. Like choosing a significant other, the first, second, and third rules are: BE YOURSELF. The same applies when looking for a job.
Job search is not always a fun activity, but we are employable at any age, education, or skill level. We are our own worse enemy when it comes to finding the courage to apply for the job we want. We need the humility to know our limitations and the honesty to believe in ourselves. We all have a ton to offer, and if you are looking for your first job or want to step out of retirement for more income or enjoyment, do it. Once you decide what you might like to do, prepare yourself—eat well and get enough sleep so you can be kind in your thoughts. An “I can do” attitude influences any boss looking for a new, perfect fit employee.
Know your strengths and enter a job search with reasonable humility. Humble does not mean making yourself small or less than others. It means honestly admitting your strengths and entering the job search as your biggest fan.
Until the next time: Live while you live.
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