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Jobhunting 101

Right now I’m relaxing while reading a book and eating cookies, but let’s be honest, the past few weeks have been a weird, confusing ride.

Since I officially dropped out of university and started looking for a job I realized that there are certain things school doesn’t teach you. Like how to do your laundry or fill in tax forms or even the most basic thing to do after college: how to apply for a job.

Ofcourse I’ve applied for student jobs in the past, but those things were just for the summer and didn’t require that much work. I’d show up at a store, say “Hey, I saw you were looking for someone, HERE I AM.” and most of the time I’d be hired. That is not the case if you’re looking for a full-time job. I’ve been searching for a job for less than a month now and I’ve made some mistakes but I also may have a job next week (fingers crossed). So here’s a little list to help you guys nail your jobsearch.

  1. Apply to everything
    Naturally you have to decide in what sector you want to work first. For me it was simple, I’ve done several jobs in retail over the past summers and I quite liked it. The biggest thing is that you can’t bet all your money on one horse. Don’t apply to one job and just assume that you’ll get hired. Apply to four, five, six, yes even twenty jobs. It increases your chances of finding something. The clue here is to not be too picky. Of course you want to work in an environnement that you love and with a compagny you adore but sometimes they just aren’t looking for someone.
  2. Dress to impress
    You may have heard this a lot but it’s true. You need to dress for the job you want. If you eventually want to be the Big Boss of the compagny, dress like it on your interview. I went for a jobinterview in the Delhaize, a supermarket here in Belgium and the employers have to wear a shirt or vest of the delhaize so basically it doesn’t really matter when you wear. I came in a blazer, dressy top and dark jeans (so it would be more casual) and I felt way more confident than if I had sat there in a hoodie. 

    TIP: plan that outfit! Lay it out. That way you won’t have to stress in the morning about what you want to wear.
  3. “You need me!”
    We all know that a CV is one of the most important things while applying for jobs. So don’t be afraid to change it to fit different jobs and no, I don’t mean lie. I mean that you can have different CV’s for different job applications which highlights different assets. They need to know why you are the best applicant for this specific job, not everything you ever did. If you’re going for a management position, write down all your skills as a leader and specific situations that required teamwork and leadership. Don’t tell them about how you spend one summer cleaning the school, tell them about your lemonade stand when you were a kid because you’ve always loved taking initiative and you’re a go-getter (now okay, maybe don’t put this on your CV but mention it in your interview as a little anecdote).
  4. Google is your best friend
    Google the compagny you want to work for. Find out who their CEO is, what accomplishments they have, how long have they been in business. What products do they make? Which demographic are they focussing on. You may think this isn’t important when you want to work in for example retail, but it is. Finding out the views and goals of a compagny is a big step in deciding if it fits with your lifestyle and interests. For exemple, I had an interview at Scapa, I did not research the style beforehand and when I got there I was like “Yeah, not for me, I’m more of a casual, H&M girl.” Well, they actually liked me and they wanted to hire me immediately. I turned them down because I knew that in the long run I’d feel like I didn’t fit in. GOOGLE GOOGLE GOOGLE. 
  5. Transparancy
    This is one of the mistakes I made. I just wanted to get a job so when I went to my job hunter office thing I said yes to everything. Callcenter? YES! Scapa? YES! Working until 10? YES! When I got home I started rethinking everything and I came to the conclusion that about half of the things I said yes to weren’t really what I wanted or were way too far. By then I was too scared to call my job consultant and be like “Actuallyyy, no.” So I went along with it. Within no time there were 3 stores that wanted me but I really didn’t want to work there. It came to a point where I purposely didn’t pick up the phone when my job consultant called me (I am sooo sorry!). So be completely honest with your consultant and with the compagnies you’re applying to and avoid the messy bits.
  6. Be yourself
    Be the best version of yourself, trust that you are awesome and if the other doesn’t want you, it’s their loss. Because you are a badass (Thank you Jen Sincero!) and nothing can stop you. Show the compagny who you are and you will do great. If you’re somebody you’re not, you won’t feel good about the interview and it will affect if you get the job or not.
    Relax, take a deep breath and have fun.
    .
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Let’s Twist This Shit

It’s been a while since I posted that I was quitting university and in the meantime, I’ve told a lot of people in my surroundings. They’ve been divided into two groups ever since. The nay-sayers and the you-go-girlers. But at the end of the day there are two people who’s opinion matter the most to me: my mom and dad. Unfortunately they also have two different ideas, like always since they got divorced. My dad thinks I’m making the absolute worst mistake of my life while my mom is warming up to the idea … or at least kind of understands where I’m coming from.

The truth is that university made me unhappy. It wore me out, mentaly and physicaly. Yeah, I’ve had some pretty good times but I’m done with just pretty good. I want something amazing. I don’t want to focus on the bad stuff, I want to focus on finding solutions and ,well, being happy. Something I feel I haven’t been in a long time.

So I’m changing this blog too. I’m still going to post about my days, but I feel like I need to do something more here. Instead of just talking about my bad days, why not talk about how to make it better. Why not try out all the tips and tricks to absolutely rule this life and write about them.

Here we go.

Risking It All

Today is the 20th of August and I am facing one of the most difficult decisions in my life. Do I drop out of college or not?

A while ago my father and I talked about the future. What I wanted to do, who I wanted to be and I had no fucking clue. My dreams of the future always seemed a bit too risky, too farfetched: a famous actress, a topmodel, a princess and last but the most frequent one: a writer. I kind of pushed the idea of it to the back of my mind since there is one chance in a million that you actually get published, but it always stuck. The one clear thing was that I never wanted a 9 to 5 job. I wanted some freedom in my work, maybe not at the start, but eventually.

So here I am, 20 years old, thinking about my future and the idea of writing popped back up, I had had a taste of it this year doing Linguïstics but not enough. I wanted more. On top of that I am actually tired of going to school and being stuck in an aula for another three years just seems like a ginormous waste of time to me. I can’t see myself waiting another three years for my life to start. I’ve been waiting for the last couple of years, always pushing things I wanted to do forward because “I didn’t have time for it now” or “It would be better to start that when I have a job” and I’m tired of doing that. I want to finish writing that book and start on my second one, I want to update this blog more often, I want to finally start that youtube channel. So maybe dropping out of college, finding a job and doing a couple of online courses might be the way to go.

I know that there are a lot of advantages with getting a degree: you have more security, a better paid job and just a better job in general. But I refuse to believe that a piece of paper is more worth than the quality you deliver when you do something you’re passionate about. Yes, I will have to work some shitty jobs before I’ll be able to make money out of writing and yes, it will be extremely hard and difficult and it will cost me blood, sweat and tears. But for the first time in forever, I can see a future, I have set a goal. Somehow, I’ll get there. I refuse to believe that college or/and university is the only way to live a good life, I’m not saying perfect, but good.
And good is enough for me.
It’s time to risk it all.

Letter to a(n) (ex)friend

Hi,

it’s been a while. I’m not writing to say sorry, because I’m not. Eventhough it’s really shitty what happened, I’m not sorry for the things I said and how I felt. We had a good time together, a couple of good laughs. I remember glorious nights filled with wine and a golden haze of our friendship. But I also remember pain and tears when you did something stupid again. In all honesty, our friendship was never healthy, not for you or for me. But it sure was friendship and I miss it, everyday. I miss you all the time.
The truth is that you became more than a friend to me, you became my world in the good days and the devil in the bad. There was no neutral with you. There is just one thing I know for sure: I’ve always loved you… And in this moment, I believe I always will.

But this isn’t something that could last forever, somewhere we both knew it. I believe I made the right decision, no matter how hurt and lost I am right now. The fact is that I’ve always tried to be there for you, even if we were fighting, if something bad had happened I’d come, no run, to you. And yes, I always knew that nothing would happen between us, but that doesn’t mean that it didn’t hurt when you fell in love with someone else. So I told you I needed some time, some space, to heal. You got mad, remember, because I didn’t want to talk about it. You said you were done and I said fine, we’re done. I felt my heart break.

So maybe this is for the better. I would rather miss you than love you while you’re in love with someone else. I would rather miss you than be friends with someone who doesn’t validade my feelings and needs. I really needed some time away from you, just a week, and you made me the villain, the bad guy in this story gone wrong.

Point is that even now, after all the bullshit and pain, I’d still run to you if you called my name. I’d still do anything I can to make you happy and that’s not good. You still have so much power over me and I hate it. This is for the better, you can’t be in my life. I’m so sorry that I’m in love you.

Better To Have And Not Need Than To Need And Not Have.

I’m sorry I’ve been a bit absent recently. With everything that’s been going on ,good and bad, it’s been hard to find time to right. But I feel there is something that I need to write about, even if it’s just for me. The truth about losing someone who was never yours to lose. If you think I’m sounding a bit like Éponine from Les Misérables, you’re right. Because that’s the exact situation I’m referring to. The situation where the one you’ve been in love with for a long time gets into a relationship.

First of all, let me tell you that it hurts like hell. It’s not because that person wasn’t your boy- or girlfriend that you didn’t put time, effort and a lot of emotions into this person. In my case he was also a very good friend. We had some fall outs over the past years but we kept coming back to each other. I’m not going to lie, a part of me was always hoping that one day he’d look at me and see more than just a friend. So when he got together with a girl he’d only known for three weeks, a girl I introduced to him, I broke.

You want the truth about loving someone who sees nothing more in you than just a friend and an occasional bedpartner? It hurts every step of the way. Every moment you look at that person, you want them, to be with them, to laugh with them. You can see a whole future unraveling before your eyes and yearn for it. But they don’t. The question “What If” will keep you awake for more nights than you can possible imagine. I’ve been telling myself for months that I didn’t hurt as much as it did, fooling myself that it was okay. The full extent of how it affected me came crashing down last Friday when he told me he had a relationship.

I took the drastic step of cutting him out of my life completely. I erased all his pictures, deleted his number, unfriended him on all my social media. It hurts every single day but I know that I can’t be his friend when I have these feelings, I know that I need distance.

For all of you who are facing the same or a simular situation, I hope you make the choice that is right for you, whatever the consequences may be.

Inexplicable him

I am writing this on the 5th of June at literally 3 AM. Why I’m posting it a month later? Because she asked me to keep it a secret until after the exams and she’s my best friend. Do I want her to be happy? Yes. Does it break my heart? Absolutely…

Have you ever been head over heels in love with someone and you don’t even know why? He is annoying and stubborn and a pain in the ass… But you’re in love, crazy in love. I have. As a matter of fact, I am in love with that bastard right now. The only problem is that he’s in love with my best friend … and she’s in love with him too.

Let me paint the picture a bit more clearly here. I met this boy in oktober 2015. The start of our ongoing love-hate-relationship. From the beginning I had these feelings for him, something I can’t explain, I was drawn to him. Even though he’s an asshole and he has hurt me more times then I care to remember, I keep coming back to him. Although it wasn’t until oktober 2016, a year later, that I realized I was in love with him. Since I didn’t want to be in love with him I tried to shake it off, tried to get interested in someone else and it seemed to work for a while. Until it didn’t anymore. You see, whatever I did, no one could compare to him, no one could replace him.

In the summer of 2016 he met my soon-to-be-best friend, she was already dating someone else at that point and they quickly became very good friends. They started meeting up weakly and in november 2016 he realized he had feelings for her. Since she already had a boyfriend he never confessed it to her. Just to me. On a certain day on the Easter Break we met and he confessed his love for her and I confessed my love for him. I made him believe that I was over it. Then one day, he couldn’t keep it in anymore and told my best friend about his feelings. She turned him down since she was still in a relationship.

But then the dynamics changed when her boyfriend broke up with her. That happened about two months ago. So now the knows that he’s in love with her and that I’m crazy about him and she always said that she didn’t have any feelings for him except platonic friendship. Until today.
Today she texted me that she does have feelings for him, romantic feeling, but that she doesn’t want to act on them until I’m over him. I don’t want that. I want her to be happy but most of all, I want him to be happy. And I know that she will make him happy.

You see, the thing is that I can’t be selfish when it comes to him. I can’t know that he could be happy in a heartbeat and purposely stop him. So I told her to tell him, that I would be okay. I am going to be okay, someday. Maybe not today or tomorrow or next week, but it will happen. I just don’t want to be the person standing in their way. Of course, it hurts like hell. I am completely broken. I also told her that I would need some time to deal with this and that it wouldn’t be the best thing to hang out with just us three for a while. She understood and asked me to keep it a secret until she told him after the exams. I agreed.

So here I am, it is almost 4 AM. I can’t sleep because he’s all I can think about, them together, he smiling at her like he’s the happiest man on the planet. I can’t sleep because I’m holding in a secret that’s burning me up inside. So this is my way of letting it out. And I’m publishing this when the time is right. On 5 July, when he will supposedly know everything and my heart wil break all over again.

A defeating blow

Today the worst thing I could imagine happened. The one I thought would always be there to love me and support me no matter what, didn’t. My mother confirmed all my fears. The fear of not succeeding in this life, of failing, of never being good enough. The person I thought who would always say that it’s okay, just said that it’s not and that she’s scared I’ll fail later on in life and with the exam results coming up I’m more stressed out then I ever was before.

It started when she asked if I wanted to go out for a walk, after spending the whole day dragging boxes and walking around at the place I work, my feet were sore so I didn’t really feel like it. I just wanted to settle down and relax for a bit. After she kept pushing and me constantly saying no, she stormed off to go outside only to come back a bit later, still fuming. We proceded to have an argument as I thought it was pretty unfair that she would get mad about something so little since she knew my feet were sore. That’s when she said that I could use any excercise I could get. That’s when it hit me, why she was pushing and getting angry, she thought I was fat.

Now in an earlier post I already adressed this isue and how close it is to my heart. So at that moment, I couldn’t deal with her anymore and went upstairs. She came after me and proceded to tell me how she thinks I will fail later in life and that I have no foundations what so ever to survive in the future. Confirming every doubt I had had in these last weeks, even months. She was always the person I felt I didn’t have to prove anything to, that she had my back and believed in me, unlike so many other of parent figures in my life. The one who at least understood that I was still finding my own path and myself even if she doesn’t always agree with the choices I make and doesn’t just forgive every mistake I made. And now it’s all gone.

Is this real? Have I dissapointed the only person I thought I could never alienate? Am I really such a big screw-up that even my own mom has serious doubts? Am I making so many bad choices? Until now I thought that ,even though me and my life aren’t perfect, at least I was doing kind of fine. But that view totally shattered today. My mom broke my heart today, more than anyone ever did. I just don’t know how to recover from that right now. It feels like my solid rock just became water.

Today I didn’t even try to hide

I feel like all I do on this blog is complain about the sad days. Yes, there are a lot and yes, I need to write more on the sad days then on the good days. I honestly feel like my writing is so much better on the bad days. But I want to do something different. Today was a pretty good day.

I felt light today, free of worry. I laughed with my friends, listened to music, took a nap and tonight I met with some friends for dinner. One friend cooked for the rest of us and it was delicious (but don’t tell him that, wouldn’t want to brush his ego even more). We laughed and talked until half past twelve. The last few weeks have been tough on me, I feel like I’m starting to slip back into a hole. But tonight really helped me realize what amazing friends I have. We bitched about previous relationships and played Truth or Dare (because in our minds we really are still twelve). Although that turned out to be more about truth then about dare. We told each other a lot about ourselves and it didn’t feel weird or forced or anything. For a couple of hours I was in a good place and somehow that was enough for now. I know that when I look at the past few weeks I’m still not good. Not even close. But this, tonight, this small gathering with food, wine and telling stories I thought I’d never tell was one of the happiest moments of my month. I am so thankful for that.

In a previous post I talked about how the little things can get you down, but it’s also the little things that get you back up.

Anxiety about others

Have you ever been in a social situation where you just think: “how is this happening? How did my life turn into this television show where I don’t want to be part of.” Well, that’s what’s happening to me right now.

You see, there’s this boy I used to like but he liked my best friend so the feelings slowly faded away. I know that my best friend has a boyfriend so I wasn’t jealous of her but since he felt that way about her I told myself nothing was going to happen and went on. But he was never far away, I’d still text him back if he woke me up in the middle of the night, I calmed him down when he was freaking out about something, I listened to him when he talked about her. I loved seeing him in love because I had never seen him like that before. In the meantime everyone of my friends knew how I felt about him.

So two weeks ago he came clean to my best friend and told her how he felt. She turned him down since she already had a boyfriend. But today was when everything blew up. This afternoon an other friend proclaimed that she was in a relationship with the same boy that I liked. The boy I had told her repeatedly that I liked him.

The first thing that popped into my head was: how is this possible? they’ve only known each other for less then a month.
The second thing was: why her?

Now, I didn’t mean it in a hateful way of why her I’m much better. I meant it in a hurt way of why was I not good enough. You see, my biggest fear is ending up alone and the last two years haven’t been to kind to me. I got hurt a lot and combined with my anxiety I have come to a point where relationships can only end bad. I want to find someone, I do, but some part of my brain is constantly telling me that it’s never going to get that. That I’ll never find the one. It’s been causing a lot of sleepless and lonely nights and daily concerns me. I know that it’s irrational since I’m only 20 and that I’ll find someone someday. It’s just getting harder and harder to get those thoughts out of my head. Especially now. I’m not gonna lie, I’m pretty heartbroken over this. But I’m getting ice cream, wine and a good movie.

Somehow and in some time, I’ll be okay… And everyone out there who feels the same way, I know you’ll be okay too.

4. Photos

IMG_0657

Everyone who has been in my dorm knows my photo wall. It is filled with weird but amazing photo’s of people who have been really important for me. Every time I look at it I just smile. They all remind me of amazing memories, trips I’ve been on, people I’ve met, things I’ve experienced. Things that I am grateful for and even though I’m not really friends anymore with some of the people on those pictures, I could never take them down. They used to be a huge part of my life and they shaped me into who I am.

So to my next boyfriend (whoever you may be or whenever you may come) I’m not sorry about those pictures of my ex hanging up. Before he was my boyfriend, he was my best friend for three years and it would just feel wrong to no represent him on my wall of people who changed my life. And to the people that walked out of my life on bad terms, you’re not getting down from this wall either, you had to play a big part in my life for us to get in such a big fight and I’m sorry it ended this way. But I would never want to forget all the good times and all the good advice you once gave me.

But these photos aren’t just a reminder for myself, they are also for my kids (if I will ever have some). I want my kids to know who I was when I went to college, I want them to know who my friends are and what I’ve done in my youth. I want them to know about those crazy nights I went out partying so they know that whatever happens I will always be there and that I will understand.

I would never want to forget a single thing that’s on this wall, because they made me who I am today… And right now, I kind of like who I am.