The Letters, Writer

Embrace the Humility in this Unprecedented Times..

Dear V,

This letter is to not pick the battles…. Rather embrace the rejections whether they were for the right or wrong reasons, because there’s humility and blessings in those experiences. It’s paving a way to YES somewhere you least expect it and it’ll be a better space. It’s hard to say what that is now, but it will.

Be grateful and humbled that someone caught a glimpse of your story and questioned it. It didn’t sound great. You were angered I get it… But there’s always a way to look at thing different if you look harder.

In my own words now…

I was “fired” or let go from the company I boomeranged to, for no cause/no reason. This was a rejection…. They had attribute it to communication breakdowns but had not given any warnings or examples of what it was. The conversation was a very short 10mins to discuss severance package and last date so that I could still reap the health benefits. Yes I was very confused. I’ll stick to being let go because I wasn’t laid off as the company isn’t laying off anyone. It was very unfortunate and very disappointing because I’m still going through in my head what went wrong. The only thing that came to mind was a misunderstanding over moving desks that led to a larger conversation over email…..I could have fought and I tried but I wasn’t given a chance to have a 2nd conversation.

I learned I wasn’t alone in this experience as I caught up with a former co-worker who was let go early March as well for no cause… And after speaking with her, I felt so terrible for her as she’s a single mum, being let go during Covid19 was devastating. It’s definitely stressful for her even when I was on the call with her.

For what it’s worth, I felt a huge breath of relief from this. So I decided to take a break from aggressive job hunting, while still speaking with recruiters and hiring managers for potential opportunities. Surely there were times we all felt we needed a break but I felt this was a good time. Got me thinking and planning a lot. I cooked and baked a lot (which I’ll get to writing a few things this month). Did a whole lot of deep thoughts and planning for what’s to come in the next few months…

Talking about interviews…. there were several rejections and it’s not uncommon. I’ve experienced it when I was on a work visa and even now as a LPR. Those who can’t sponsor generally or those who can’t sponsor at a certain level. Those who rejected me because I didn’t have enough experiences, or I was overqualified… I’ve been rejected from promotions because they didn’t have a spot for it..

30MM unemployed across the country now, yes there are a lot of competitions, but I don’t really see it that way because all had been through different types of jobs and experiences and gained different skillsets along the way. Hiring managers aren’t looking to see who spoke the best, but who had experiences in the areas that they are challenged with… So my job is to understand what these challenges are and how I can bring it to the interview table.

9 years of experience in Ad/Mar tech, I’m no longer just an entry level candidate, I’m a mid-senior level candidate with people, account, product and operations management experiences. I need to change the way I talk about my experiences during interviews. It’s not about the duties and responsibilities, but what have I learned and gained that is not meant to put on paper but meant to be shared during the interview because those are the talking points.

Unfortunately during this unprecedented times, it really does sucks to be unemployed. Healthcare insurances aren’t affordable starting at $440 per month (for a single! I can’t imagine what it’s like for single parents or families!) I’ve been fortunate to receive the additional weekly $600 unemployment fund. That helped a lot considering the mirate of expenses: rent, utilities, internet, phone, groceries, healthcare, setting aside for tax withholding next year… But looking on the bright side, some of these additional income helped me to start on some things I had not been able to do because I was always exhausted from work and workouts and also the occasional socializing.. I just couldn’t make time for it (which was always an excuse…)

I’ve enrolled in the MicroMasters in Digital Product Management offered by EdX partnered through Boston University… Yes I know that doesn’t mean I’ll get into PM because ultimately it’s still the work experience that mattered, but the array of courses offered wasn’t just PM focused, but what’s involved with it: social media marketing, business analytics, experimentation… turns out I didn’t think that PM stretches beyond the role of managing just the product but also taking into account on how to successfully manage the product to market. But this first course of Social Media Marketing got me thinking what I really want to achieve! That’s a good start right?

I’ve also signed up to volunteer with a non-profit organization involved in rescuing those who have been trafficked to NY. I’ve always had a soft spot with non-profits especially rescuing those who have been trafficked into sex slavery, but never really knew how to get deep into it. Since I’m bilingual in both Chinese and English and it’s a need for this organization, this was a perfect time to get involved. Again, even when I’m employed, I’m not going to give up on volunteerism. I’ve always enjoyed helping people and I should make no excuses thereafter.

So what I’m trying to say is that all is not lost with the rejections and unemployment.. It’s just paving many roads to YES!! It takes time, just like my LPR took 10 years… There’s nothing to lose but there’s a lot to gain! Make full use of the free time now but also take that break when you need it. There’s always light at the end of the tunnel, you gotta brace for it!

Much love,
~~Valericiously~~

PS: how many of you are taking advantage of this unemployment situation to spring out to do something you’ve always wanted.. Could be entrepreneurship (which is really everything possible), complete switch of careers etc..

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