I’m going to write a novel.
An erotic novel, that is.
What are you excited about?
I’m going to write a novel.
An erotic novel, that is.
What are you excited about?
How’s your job hunt going?
Let me guess… It’s shitty, right? You edited your resume dozens of times. You even wrote a nice cover letter. But nothing. Nada.
And so you’re feeling defeated. Your college debt is piling up. Mom and dad are wondering what went wrong. And you’re bitter at everyone else who seems to be doing better than you.
Yep. I hear ya.
I was so depressed when I graduated college and joined the full-time working world. No more shitty retail jobs or mixing drinks at Starbucks, I was assured. It’s off to the big companies with that college degree!
Dare to dream, right?
Now, listen up. Here’s what you’re going to do:
APPLYING TO A JILL JOB (i.e. retail)
Your resume has to focus on these things:
If the job posting doesn’t ask for a college degree, leave it off. Having a college degree means you have (or had) plans. The hiring manager will hire a high school dropout before they hire you. Why? Because you’re more likely to quit this job for something better–you’re more likely to be actively looking for something better [or related to your degree]. There goes all that wasted training.
APPLYING TO A FANCY PANTS JOB (i.e. office)
Tailor your resume and cover letter to every damn job you apply to. I’m being serious. Pretend you’re HR and you’re casually looking through hundreds of resumes. HR is not going to evaluate every single resume and decide who is the better candidate. No. HR is going to eliminate resumes from the pile.
First, they’re going to get rid of resumes with irrelevant education and qualifications. Oh you went to school for Biochemistry and you have a retail background? Don’t apply to a job in finance. Next, they’re going to get rid of the candidates without college degrees. Easy. Next, they’re going to get rid of the candidates whose resumes look incomplete, generic, or unprofessional. The pile keeps getting smaller!
You need to tailor your experiences to the job posting. Be a parrot! Spoon feed your candidacy to HR. This will make you look like the most qualified applicant. Don’t forget to make your resume keyword rich. A lot of the bigger companies use resume sorting software that looks for specific keywords. Sprinkle the keywords [meaningfully] throughout your resume.
PUTTING YOURSELF OUT THERE (i.e. being relevant)
Sending resumes is not enough. You have to make yourself relevant. You have to stand out from everyone else. Make a really solid profile on Linked In and add your classmates, friends, and family. Look up people who work at the companies you’re interested in. You don’t even have to be that specific. If you’re interested in finance, look for people who work in finance. Google and Twitter are useful sources too.
Get in touch. Reach out to these people and request an informational interview over the phone or in person. You want to gather information about the company and the industry. Not only will this help your candidacy, but it’ll help with your search. You’ll get a sneak peek from an insider’s perspective on the industry you’re trying to enter.
Be genuine, nice, and personable. You’re building a relationship with this person. Be interested in what they have to say, and respect their time. Ask them to introduce you to people they think could help you. Make sure they know how appreciative you are. Don’t forget to send a thoughtful thank you letter afterwards.
How’s your job hunt going?
Mavis, I would keep all of this to yourself. I would find a therapist. – Matt Freehauf, Young Adult
I just finished watching Young Adult. If you haven’t seen it, go watch it now. Charlize Theron (who is an amazing actress, by the way) plays Mavis Gary, a self-pitying former prom queen trying to relive her glory days. She returns to her hometown to rekindle an old relationship. The twist is that her ex-boyfriend is married and has a baby. Mavis is a hot, delusional mess who will change the facts until they suit her.
Know anybody like that?
Mavis Gary reminds me of my best friend from college. We were really, really close. Almost dating, even. We were roommates and we knew everything about each other. I knew every little tidbit about her daily life. And she knew mine.
We “broke up” a little after graduation.
She was a really good friend. I even miss her sometimes. She was, like Mavis, a little delusional. Even though she was a total sweetheart, she had a very specific way of interpreting the things that happened to her. Mind you, this only happened with her ex or current boyfriends. Nobody else. Just them.
She would twist things they had said and done. She would keep twisting it until it made sense to her. Casual relationships became torrid affairs. Apathetic ex boyfriends became obsessed stalkers. I believed her at first, I really did. Then I started being there. I got to see things happen. I couldn’t see things as she saw them. I was confused.
She analyzed every word in every text message sent by ex, current, or potential boyfriends. Sometimes, she would ask me to analyze them for her. It was insane. She put so much thought into everything people were saying or doing. It was making me paranoid. Although I often thought she was wrong, I comforted her, like a good friend would. It fed her behaviour, and probably encouraged it.
And so, when I heard “Mavis, I would keep all of this to yourself. I would find a therapist”, I thought of her.
I was her therapist.
“If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the moment.” – Lao Tzu
This quote really opened my eyes. We’re constantly worrying about things that have already happened, haven’t happened yet, or might never even happen. We need to focus on this moment. Right here. Right now. Consciousness is an amazing thing that we take for granted. You exist. I exist. We’re alive. Shouldn’t that be enough?
Last week, I opened up the floor to talk about your relationship troubles. I will be using my experiences (and those of my friends) to answer your questions as thoroughly as I can.
Want me to answer your question? Hit the “Get in Touch” link above.
Here’s the first question I got. It’s from a 20 something girl in college.
I dated this guy last year for 4 months. He started avoiding me randomly and eventually broke up with me. We have a lot of mutual friends, so I see him around sometimes. He told my friend he has a girlfriend, but when we all met up for dinner he wouldn’t stop flirting with me. We all went back to his dorm to watch a movie and he kept touching my knee and tried to kiss me. He acts like he likes me, but he’s always hot and cold. I can’t help it, I always fall for him and end up chasing him, which turns him off and he starts ignoring me again. What do I do?
I hear this all the time. Hell, it’s even happened to me more than I care to count. This probably isn’t news to you, but your ex is bored and selfish. He knows that he has you in the palm of his hand, and he pushes your buttons to see how you’ll react. On the other hand, he also wants instant gratification. He wants it right here, right now.
I had a boyfriend like that–well, he was an ex at the time, and now he’s so far into the past it’s like it never happened.
Anyways, I was 17 and stupid. He called me to make last minute plans, interrupted busy days, and pretty much dangled a carrot in my face. He knew that I wasn’t over the breakup, so he played with me. He acted interested–it was the best feeling in the world at the time. Then, he turned it right off. I felt cold and confused. So, I tried harder. I wanted him to be interested in me again. This turned him off even more. Things got worse.
Eventually, he got a girlfriend and left me alone. I got new friends and started going out and enjoying life again. He tried to assert himself back into my life. I ignored him. He tried harder. He wanted to be relevant. I wasn’t over him, but I was damn good at acting like I was. It drove him crazy. He called me every day to talk or make plans. He harassed me through text. I answered 1 out of every 5 and pushed him further away. I wasn’t going to fall for his games anymore.
My advice to you is easier said than done. You need to distance yourself from him. I know that it sounds impossible right now, but this is the only way you’ll a) Get him to stop having control over you; and b) Enjoy yourself without worrying about him. He’s not going to change. If you’re not changing anything, he’s not going to start treating you better. He will play these games for as long as you let him. You need to do YOUR thing, and worry about YOURSELF.
Ignore his calls and texts. Stop making time for him. He’ll either try harder or bug off. You’ll realize that the tables will turn, and that YOU have control over the situation. Now, what you do with that power is up to you.
What do you think? Agree or disagree–sound off in the comments below. If you have any other advice, we’d love to hear it.
Hey dudes and dudettes!
I’m feeling generous this week. So, I’m going to start solving all of your relationship troubles.
What makes ME so qualified? I have a B.A. in dealing with jealous and clingy exes, an M.A. in flirting (done right), and a Ph.D in batting off crazy stalkers. Baby, I’ve seen it all.
I have Bitch Face.
What is Bitch Face? Allow me to educate you, my dear friends. Bitch Face is a chronic condition that affects thousands, if not millions! It’s when someone’s neutral facial expression looks angry.
Simply put, that person looks like a bitch. It doesn’t matter if they’re as sweet as a Georgia peach. They still look like a bitch. It doesn’t matter if they’ve had a bad day. They still look like a bitch. It doesn’t matter if they purposely try to look unapproachable because they’re anti-social or in a hurry. They still look like a bitch.
Why is this important? Sufferers of Chronic Bitch Face are constantly heckled by strangers on the street. I am a sufferer of CBF, and I can confirm this is true. I’ve always had it.
When I was in grade school, teachers were worried about me. The school psychologist pulled me out of class for weeks to “talk.” She thought I was miserable and probably abused at home. This made me really self conscious. In high school, my friends constantly asked, “What’s wrong!”
I always look like a bitch. I’m usually deep in thought, spacing out, or focusing on where the hell I’m going. Strangers sometimes approach me on the street, saying “It’s not so bad!” “Smile!” and other nonsense. It’s pretty invasive. Who knows–maybe I’m afraid of walking down the street alone. Maybe I’m coming back from a funeral. Maybe I’m depressed. We don’t know what goes on in the minds of strangers as we pass them on the street. It’s not okay to remind them of their visible misery. Just mind your own fucking business.
Do you tell strangers to smile? Or rather, command them to smile? Go ahead and throw yourself off a bridge.
The thing is, this is just how my face looks. I’m not angry–I’m really not. I’m thinking about something. And I don’t think it’s normal to bounce down the street smiling at people who I
don’t care about don’t know.
At the same time, I don’t care to do anything about it, because I’m a city girl. I don’t make an effort to smile at strangers. We all ignore each other here. It’s a defense mechanism. It’s how I keep creepers away. Nobody wants to approach/mug/harass Miss Bitch Face.
Let’s pretend I decide to actively resist my natural Bitch Face. I slap on a huge fake smile and go about my day. I run errands. I go out to eat. I walk down the street alone. Still smiling! Do I not look like an axe-wielding maniac? Are you not weary on the chick who’s staring into your soul (yeah, I tend to do that) and smiling?
Yeah…I thought so.
Women people with Bitch Face are constantly harassed by middle aged men strangers on the street. They’re commanded to ‘smile.’ It’s not 1950 anymore and we’re not on the set of Leave it to Beaver.
For now, I focus on resisting Bitch Face in contexts that matter–at work and out with friends. To my fellow sufferers of CBF, here’s an a funny take on dealing with it.
Do you have Bitch Face?