Friday, 19 September 2014

Graduate Unemployment Survival Guide

Okay, you guys are just loving the disaster that is my unemployed life blog posts so of course I am going to keep throwing them out at you. SO I know I said this week I would fill you in a bit more on where I've been but unfortunately I still can't. *Sighs* I know. But let me fill you in on life right now. I am STILL job hunting because I am STILL rocking unemployment graduate style. My house is a building site with dust and bricks everywhere plus 3 builders who don't get on at all and regularly have domestics in and outside my house. Me being the only one at home daily I feel like I am living in some sort of TV soap/Big Brother reality show. Seriously, yesterday I nearly stepped in to the argument to tell them to take it outside because it was ruining my peaceful unemployed graduate lifestyle. JEEZ some people 'ey? And I know I totally shouldn't but I actually am starting to side with one of the builders as he does more work then any of them and you all know how I feel about people not pulling their weight and what not. It's all about team work guys c'mon.

So being unemployed SUCKS. Feeling useless, lost, sad and frustrated are some of the daily emotions that come to mind. Being the adaptable creature that I am, I have had to change my lifestyle to keep myself busy and focused. It can be so devastating knowing you worked hard solidly for 3 years, graduate feeling proud only to run smack into a brick wall because no one wants to hire graduates. Woooooo go university woooo ..... 

So here is my advice for dealing with this crap situation that isn't really your fault

Survival tip 1: Get Busy

Always always always always try to keep busy. This is particularly hard when your limited with money/completely skint. However there are solutions that are free/cheap which probably roles into all of my next tips. If you keep busy you aren't dwelling on the bad situation in hand. Dwelling on the negative is good for no one.

Survial tip 2: Get Creative
Whether you're a baker, a florist, an artist, an illustrator or a blogger, it's time to get creative. Set yourself a mini project that will take up your days. I personally bounce between blogging, interneting (yes that totally counts so shhhhh) baking and decorating cakes and recently I started a little mini home furnishing project where I am designing and making pillows for my new bedroom. Yes I know I sound like a 1950's housewife but if you think about it I am actually a housewife but without the married/husband I'm a housesingle....yeah I don't know either, but it sounds better than unemployed graduate....I wonder if it's an acceptable LinkedIn title?...

Survival tip 3: Get Experience
I consider myself so so so so so lucky to have been given the opportunity to gain some work experience with a PR company in Manchester. I do bits and bobs in blogger outreach and I've even attended an amazing fashion blogger event at Warehouse. It keeps me busy whenever they send me work and it is really helping me in my steps towards a career. Apply to companies in your area asking if you can set up some form of work experience. Whether it's one day a week or a couple of weeks placement. Either way you're gaining experience, a key selling point for your CV and you never know where it may lead you...but you may have to brace yourself for a Devil Wears Prada type situation...

Survival tip 4: Get Out

Like seriously, get out. If you're anything like me, your summer job has ended and you rely on bits and bobs of work to keep you going in the midst of applying for jobs. Money is tight and the thought of leaving the house means spending money you don't have. I try to limit myself to one social outing a week now whether that be coffee at a cafe or one night out. The rest of the time I am stuck indoors. To avoid getting cabin fever and eventually massacring my home town I make sure I am out of the house for at least 20 minutes a day. I am lucky enough to have an old but still bonkers Springer Spaniel who is happy to drag me around my estate all day. Even if you don't have a dog, whack in your iPod and go for a walk. Oxygen is good for you an all that...

Survival tip 5: Stay focused

I know how frustrating it is to get no where in a long period of job hunting. Trust me I know. It's so frustrating to work so hard all summer and not being able to go out and enjoy your earnings because you don't know where your next income is coming from. If you keep busy and do something every day that helps you get closer to your dreams/goals/ambitions, even if it's something tiny like writing a blog post on your blog, it's still something. You can't/wont be unemployed forever, the government really really really needs that loan paid back anyway...

Survival tip 6: Read

Read to your hearts content. I've had so much trouble sleeping this past month or two. I would wake up in the night for no reason but feel too panicked and restless to go to sleep. I know it's because I am consistently worrying about being unemployed. I recently started reading on my Kindle Fire again and it has done me a world of good. I am sleeping better, my mind is distracted and I am feeling more relaxed. Read whatever whether you have a tablet and access to an online book store or whether you have to rummage around on your mums book shelf, do it! To start you off, here is a recommendation of a book I read and fell in love with:  'The Nothing Girl' by Jodi Taylor

Survival tip 7: Stay off Facebook

Easier said then done I know. I am not Facebooks biggest fan, I use it to upload photos of events with friends and family and to chat on messenger to keep up with friends close and far away. However when I have time to kill, it's like an automatic switch inside me that turns to Facebook and I wake up scrolling down a news feed full of imbeciles, attention seeking status's and just general weird internet folk in videos shared on my timeline. It has been proven that when in a bad mood, to go on Facebook would only make it worse. So if you're down about unemployment it's best to avoid that news feed of course mates starting their postgrad course, their graduate scheme or just generally earning money...

Survival tip 8: Dress like the person you want to be
My absolute favourite quote right now. So right now I am dressed like a slob because I wanna have a slob day. But that is not my point. On the days I am out of the house I whack on my best clothes, make tremendous effort with my make up and rock my Michael Kors tote.Dressing like you've already succeeded is a great little confidence booster when your self esteem is low. So heading to maccy D's?? Well whack on your best lippy and go treat yourself to a meal! Strut yo stuff giiiiiiirl

Survival tip 9:  Stay motivated
This is the hardest. After being rejected by more jobs than...oh yeah I forgot, no one has been rejected from more jobs than a graduate.... I can honestly say some days I don't want to remove myself from my duvet, I just want to lie there in my pit of self pity. Pity pit as you may call it. At times like this it is best to seek what inspires you. Normally Pinterest helps on that one, seriously just go and type 'Inspirational quotes' and feel the inspiration. You can thank me later

Survival tip 10: Just keep swimming

As I have said before, life keeps moving even when you don't. You will get there one day, at this rate, I'll get to employment when I am old enough to retire, but hey, life will keep moving. Just keep swimming and something will one day come along

tip 11 is to repeat all of the above and keep repeating until someone will pay you. 

I hope this post didn't sound too much like a university careers site because we all know how useful they are... Jokes but seriously I am allowed to be bitter I am unemployed.

If you enjoyed this post (or not) then feel free to explore my other posts with a similar theme that many unemployed graduates have felt comfort in:

*Crap You Realise In Your Early 20s*
*Life After Uni: Expectation Vs Reality*
*A Day In The Life Of An Unemployed Graduate*
*The Daily Thoughts Of The Unemployed Graduate*



  1. Totally know how this feels - I'm an unemployed graduate too! This post made me laugh :) Right, back to cover letter writing (with Dexter in the background...)!

    Tara / Headline Beauty xox

  2. I love this! I still relate to these points very much since I'm only just in a temporary christmas job, it's a nice short break but I'll most likely be falling back in to this title come January and I definitely need to spend my time being more constructive!

    1. Ah I am so envious of you and your christmas job!! Good luck with the job hunt and thanks for reading :)

  3. Hang in there. It's all about being open to everything that comes at your way and using it to expand your connections. Good luck.

  4. This is such an amazing post and I know I would have found this really inspiring when I was in this position at the start of the year. I always find it really refreshing to come across people who are going through similar situations as I felt like a lot of people judged me really badly for being unemployed after Uni but they just didn't understand how hard finding a job actually is. I love love love the photos you've used and I'm keeping all of my fingers crossed that you find something soon, it sounds like you're getting brilliant experience and your blog is fantastic so you're going to stand out against other applicants :)
    Love Holly xx

    1. Thank you so much Holly, all your lovely comments bring a smile to my face! x


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