rjridley Posted August 6, 2010 Report Share Posted August 6, 2010 I went to a meeting for job seekers on Wednesday. Something the guest speaker said confirmed something I suspected. My lack of success in finding a job has something to do with a problem I have had all my life: making friends.He told us that half of all jobs are gotten by people who are already working at the company looking to fill the job. Out of the remaining jobs that are filled with people from outside, half are filled by people who were referred by someone already working there. So your best shot at getting a job somewhere you want is to know someone who works there. But to know them you have to have met them, and they have to like you. So on some level they have to be your friend.I have had trouble making friends, first because I was an outcast, and then later because all those years of being an outcast cost me years that I could have been learning what to do. I am still trying to learn what I didn't learn back then.The times when I did become friends with people socially, I wasn't able to take advantage of the employee referral because they worked at places I didn't want to work, or at places that weren't hiring for what I can do.Now that I have an idea of the career I want to pursue, I am trying to find out where in Cincinnati do people socialize who are in the field I am trying to break into, to see if I can break into their social circle so that they would see me as a friend and try to help me get a job. But I am trying to do this while battling various insecurities and anxieties, and while still learning how to make friends.I know it sounds selfish to try to become friends with people hoping that it will lead to a job, but right now I don't know what all I could do to reciprocate in a professional way since I am not a professional. I am trying to build my own connections, so I can't currently really be a connector, unless they are looking for something unrelated to my intended field.But it is very frustrating because I sacrificed trying to make friends when I was a kid because for one thing, I was rejected for being a good student, and the other thing is that I thought back then that being a good student would make everything work out in my favor.It's also frustrating because I was fortunate to not have to deal with problems at home, so I don't have any mental health problems that stem from abuse of any kind from home. But because I was never in an environment where I felt it was safe and nonthreatening enough to be myself, I was not able to learn what I needed to know in order to form healthy relationships as an adult. And I hate that it is affecting my ability to succeed professionally, since the one thing I could always count on as a kid was doing well in school. So I thought the one thing I would always be able to count on was having a good job to go to, even if I didn't do anything socially after work. And even that is out of my reach since the best way to get a job is to have friends.My plan was always to get the good job, then work on my social life, to have the friends, and the women that eluded me in high school and college. So I hate that I had to already know what I want to work on for my personal life in order to have a professional life. Which means I am not making any progress on either front.I feel lied to and deceived about the value of education. If I had learned early enough that having friends is what was most important, I would have made friends with people who already knew what I was trying to learn, and picked their brains. I wouldn't have wasted the six years in college that I did.Or, if I were able to have friends in high school, I could have bounced ideas off of them as far as where to go to college and what to major in, so that the school I went to wouldn't have been the one that offered the full scholarship, and the major I picked wasn't just the one that was my best subject.If I had known my college education wasn't going to get me anywhere, I would have spent more time trying to find parties to go to, so that I could have at least enjoyed it more and have good memories to recall.I hate that this friends thing is coming back to haunt me, because I remember clearly ways that I could have been in better situations as a child in order to be around a more non-threatening peer group to truly work on the social skills I still need to hone. Now I am stuck dealing with the damage to my self-esteem, my ability to be assertive, my ability to do the give and take of friendships as well as relationships with women, and my ability to earn a living. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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