Is it just us, or are interviews and first dates basically interchangeable?
There are certain parts of being a twenty-something that are unavoidable: midlife crises, having mixed feelings about Forever21, and eating lots of ramen included. Job hunting and dating are two more fun activities that are pretty much a given after graduation (unless you were blessed by the gods and have managed to avoid both, in which case we both hate and bow down to you). After a while, though, the two become strangely similar. How, you ask?
- When a friend tells you that they’ve finally landed a decent job, you’re excited for them (at first). Then you remember that you’re still on the hunt for your dream gig and it’s pretty damn lonely.
- You stay tight-lipped about exciting job leads around your friends for fear of sharing too much then being embarrassed later on if things don’t go as planned. You believe pretty strongly in the power of the jinx.
- The interview, which really only takes up 15?30 minutes of your life, is somehow stretched out into a week’s worth of anxiety. After you get over your disbelief of actually getting someone to agree to meet you, you agonize over what to wear. You plan what you’d like to say ahead of time. You arrive embarrassingly early.
- Upon meeting your interviewer, you’re a weird, put-together version of yourself. All the weird, goofy parts of your personality are safely tucked away for the time being. You magically become a perfectly normal human with a sunny, likeable disposition and no dark and twisty past.
- The process of putting yourself out there over and over again becomes a robotic process devoid of real enthusiasm or emotion. You can’t keep track of which anecdotes or stories you’ve told to which person. Every cover letter sounds the same. You’re the perfect candidate on paper, but really, you’re actually super tired and would rather be in your bed eating poutine.
- Waiting to hear back from someone (anyone) is agonizing. It’s the exact same feeling you get when you’re waiting for a text from someone you’re into. Physically removing yourself from your laptop is the only way to keep yourself from checking your email every 10 minutes for news.
- When and if you’re eventually rejected, you’re calm, cool, and casual. You’re gracious and understanding but not overly emotive. Inside, you want to throw a tantrum like a 5 year-old who’s been denied dessert. You feel like you’ve been lead on by a boy who never had any interest in you in the first place.
- You can’t help but think back to a crappy but easy-to-get job you’ve had in the past and wonder if it’s too late to give it another shot.
- Family gatherings and holiday parties become your most-dreaded time of year. Answering questions about your prospects (or lack thereof) is physically painful. You contemplate making a pamphlet and handing it out to curious relatives to spare yourself the repetitive questioning (“Yes, I’m still looking for a job. No, I’m not seeing anyone special. Please stop asking”).
- You dread seeing past coworkers (or worse, past interviewers) in public. The thought of this scenario makes you want to lock yourself in your room and not leave for a month.
- You keep trying. Partly because you don’t have a choice, but mostly because you have to believe that, 5 years from now, you’ll look back on this time and remember how fleeting it was. Hopefully you’ll be doing this thinking from a swanky corner office while you’re about to go on a lunch date with your hot boyfriend, but hey, let’s not get too carried away.