I went to my work counselor today. I am on something called the “REP” Program which is a program for people who are ready, willing and able to work. It’s a bit of a longer program than most but one of the benefits are that it’s more hands-off. They don’t hover over you. I have to go four times a week to job hunt and check in with my counselor. And I think together we work out what the problems might be in my resume, my interviewing skills and my approach to finding a job. Hey I’m all for it. I’m trying everything and it’s not working. If they have ideas and their job is to find people jobs, have at it, I am all ears. For this I get a small (very small) cash benefit to put toward bills and interviewing clothes, etc. Things to keep me afloat and get a job. The job program lasts six weeks and the benefits are only for nine months. If I am on the program for longer than that I think there is a three month penalty and then I can go back on it. I HOPE I don’t have to go back on it.
One of the things that I discussed with my counselor today is that I really think my appearance is holding me back. Before you chide, here is my thinking: I know I’m smart, friendly, experienced, articulate, CLEAN and qualified. I don’t have my Bachelor’s Degree (yet) but I’m working on that. Regardless I have no problem getting called for interviews. But then I go on the interview, hit it off with the interviewer and don’t get the position. If this were another industry, I might say that my “style” being considered as a factor is silly but this is Hollywood. People want you to look young and hip. And although I’m only 31, I’m older than the average applicant for the entry-level jobs I’m trying to get. And I can’t interview at the level I was working at in publishing because there is no lateral move. And in Entertainment, everyone starts at the bottom, no ifs ands or buts. So I am a noob and therefore even though I can do a lot of things, I have to be herded in with the 22 year old fresh-out-of-college-ites who have minimal job experience and maximum college debt. And the hiring managers don’t want someone who is clearly capable of doing the job and then some. They want you to have a little room to grow into the position. If I can publish three monthly medical journals simultaneously from submission to print and online copy dealing with hundreds of cranky authors and a bunch of spread-too-thin copyeditors, proofreaders and printers, I can certainly pick up your phones and empty the wastebaskets. But what if I start to get pushy and worm my way into things? What if I find a better job and leave? It’s safer and less hassle to NOT hire me. I can understand that but momma needs a j-o-b. I’m not saying I’m perfect but I just know my strengths and weaknesses at this point. I have to look at it from an objective angle or I will continue to fail.
Where my weaknesses DEFINITELY lie is my appearance. I have no interest in my appearance anymore and that is the God’s honest truth. As I’ve gotten older and put on weight I just kind of said, “Oh screw this. You like me for the inside or you take a hike.” And that is a very Grandma thing to say but I do not hide my Grandmasity. I am nothing if not an eighty year old woman trapped in a 31 year old body. And you can’t shame me otherwise. So don’t try it unless you want me to crochet a dress made of granny squares and wear it to your birthday party so you look like a rube for having such embarrassing friends.
SO today I had to fill out a simple worksheet outlining what things I want to happen, what goals I have, what specific goal I want to focus on the most and the steps I’m going to take to achieve that goal. I chose my appearance. I’ve been telling Kristyn that I think my appearance is holding me back and bless her heart she’s been all, “SHUT THE FUNK UP YOU’RE FINE!” No really she’s been, “Duh you’re pretty. And shut up we don’t have any money to gussy you up. Maybe once you get a job.” Haha. So now the doctor has ordered a makeover. The counselor agreed that in the entertainment industry it is important for you to look a certain way and if I want it bad enough, I should work towards that goal. And don’t worry she also said that if I didn’t want to I didn’t have to. She wasn’t being a jerk she was was just giving me honest advice based on my own goal which I appreciated a LOT. Most people when I tell them this they start with the, “Oh no no you’re fine you’re crazy you’re beautiful that’s crazy!” stuff. And while that is just so goddamn nice it’s not true. The reality is that I am holding my own self back and putting us in financial danger BY not making this a priority when I KNOW it to be an unpleasant truth. I honestly think it’s something I’m just going to have to bite the bullet and do. I can’t drop a ton of weight overnight and I am COMPLETELY UNWILLING AND UNINTERESTED in becoming anorexic haha. But I CAN accessorize and throw on some goddamn earrings once in a while. If I wanted to be a nurse I’d have to wear scrubs to garner the respect I’d need to do my job right? It’s not so different. And I’ve come this far right? So that’s what we’re gonna do and honestly it’s going to take research. I have some ideas of what I want the end product (moi) to look like but I’m not going to tell you, just show you when I’ve pulled my shit together.
So there’s more I wanted to say but nevermind. I deleted that shit. It really was an overshare. Shame, I know you’d have really liked it. Haha.