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Taking a "Survival Type" Job Is Good For You

By Marilyn J. Tellez, M.A.

Ugh! Arg! How can a survivor type job be good for me? I'm barely hanging on to what I found and at minimum wage. (I have been promised a ten cent an hour increase in one month).

I used to be a facilities manager at a tire factory. Boy, have I hit bottom! I've had to give up a lot of things I liked; like my fitness club membership. None of that now. I feel so down in the dumps that I don't even go for a walk, much less worry about my being fit or not.

I feel lousy after the tire factory went overseas. This new job making and serving coffee and sandwiches makes me sad at what I've lost. How can I EVER feel good about what I'm doing now to make money and pay my bills?

Here comes the career counselor to the rescue of this job holder's blues. I suggest the following ways to help anyone who has had to take something less than what they wanted, like the person described above.

1. You found a job! Yes, yes, yes, it is not what you want or expected after job loss. However, you found one that offers you some money, structure and to be out in the world. Try some small samples of gratitude for your luck.

2. Learn all you can about this job, no matter how menial you may think it is. Employers like people who are enthusiastic. See what you can do to improve it, even in small steps.

3. If this is a job working with the public, (like the sandwich maker above), you can network politely by finding out more about your customers. One might be your next employer. Good customer service has not gone out of style either.

4. Use your spare time to decide what you really want in a job. You are using some of your innate skills in this job. Pinpoint what they are. Make a list. Keep applying for jobs.

5. Have supportive people around you. They've been where you are. Show them you care about them too.

6. Be happy! Things change in a flash and this job is one that you can use to your advantage. Keep learning and smiling!

About The Author
Marilyn J. Tellez, M.A.

Certified Job & Career Transition Coach

Phone: (509) 469-3514


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