Job hunting sucks. It’s time consuming, frustrating and when it doesn’t go smoothly, it can make you seriously doubt yourself and your abilities. Obviously, the process is completely different depending on what industry you’re looking to enter – still, there are a few stages we can all expect to experience when applying to that first post-college job.
Stage 1: Excitement
You’re going to be a real woman! With a salary! Benefits! Cool co-workers! Actual money! This stage is characterized by going out and spending way to much money on boring ass button-downs and pants that could potentially be described as ‘slacks.’ You can afford to spend that money, though, ’cause you just know that you’ll be gainfully employed in like, a week.
Stage 2: Anxiety
You’ll know this stage when it comes around because you’ll refresh your email every five minutes when you’re in the throes of it. At any given moment your thought process will be: Why didn’t they want me? Is there a typo on my resume? Was my cover letter too long? Did they even open my resume? Oh my god those assholes didn’t even open it! Whatever. Tomorrow I’m going to start networking.
Stage 3: Desperation
When you send a frantic Facebook message to someone you haven’t seen since fourth grade, you know you’ve hit the desperation phase. This phase is pretty much the worst. You realize that people almost never get jobs by you know, applying to them like normal people. You try to network whenever possible but you usually just end up going out every night, drinking too much wine and slurring about how you’re REALLY REALLY ORGANIZED and SOOOOO LIKE, READY FOR THIS to some dude who tells you he owns a company even though he actually lives with his mom.
Stage 4: Dejection
This is the stage where you start to evaluate your other options: You could move back in with your parents, apply to grad school or (ugh) get an unpaid internship to build up your resume. This stage often involves a decent amount of crying.
Stage 5: Commiseration
During a weekend brunch that you and your friends can barely afford, you realize that you are not the only one in this position. You and your friends talk about how dismal your prospects are and decide that the one friend who went to law school and was too busy studying to meet up with you guys actually has the best life of all of you. You split one omelet four ways and convince yourselves that you’re full by the end of the meal.
Stage 6: Elation
At some point someone will decide to give you a job. It will probably be woefully underpaid and under stimulating but it will be a job! When you get the offer, you’re happier than you were the time Zack and Kelly finally kissed. You’ll call your parents and jump up and down and pop some cheap champagne. You’ll envision your adult life and decide you’re super grown up. The night before you start the job, you’ll feel like you’re about to go to your first day of first grade all over again.
Stage 7: Disappointment
This is what you worked so hard for? An endless stream of mindless tasks and no nap breaks? You find yourself thinking about how much you miss funemployment. Actually, scratch that – you miss college.