Over the past few months, I’ve had my fair share of events that have made me question what the point actually is, why I stay in such a competitive career and why I’m not just looking for a step down (aka feeling I’m not good enough). However, a mental superpower I have really relied on is bouncebackability; the ability to take a hit and get straight back up again.
It’s funny, when I was playing roller derby I was probably the most depressed I had been at that point in my life. The sport made me feel brilliant but one little mistake or piece of constructive criticism made me feel like I was fighting a losing battle. I was able to take a huge knock physically, jump back up and carry on skating, but anything that knocked me mentally kept me down there for weeks, which probably should have been the other way around. I gave up roller derby some time ago, but it was the first step in me realising that I was strong enough to bounce back and take a few more hits before reaching my goal, even if that meant mentally rather than physically.
Over the past two months, I’ve walked out of a job I realised was making me unhappy, dealt with rejection from jobs I thought I had nailed the interview for and even been ghosted by companies I thought I was in touching distance of. This time, however, I have worked on my bouncebackability and I actually feel incredibly positive about my job seeking experience. Just this week I have been ignored by a company I was really keen about. I admit, I feel like I had screwed up a presentation for them slightly, but definitely nothing that would put me out of the running. Long story short, they’ve stopped reply to my emails and LinkedIn messages, I didn’t get the job I had worked so hard on. Usually, this would be the point where the questioning sets in; I’m obviously not good enough so why do I try, does any company actually want to hire me, was it a huge mistake leaving my previous job?
In a move much unlike my usual self, I took this in my stride, it was 100% their loss and I was much better than them. On Monday, I went on a tirade. I applied for every job I was capable of and that I would enjoy; there were loads. I didn’t just stop there, I emailed a handful of PR agencies and influencer marketing companies in Manchester and managed to open up some dialogue. My phone did not stop ringing on Tuesday. Recruiters wanted to talk to me, even in-house recruiters from some of the top agencies in the UK; people wanted to see me for interviews and I realised maybe I am worth it, and there is a job for me out there.
If I had followed my usual pattern, by now I would have cried until I looked like my face was swollen, probably not wanted to leave my bedroom, let alone the house, and I would have skulked around the house in my dressing gown and slippers feeling incredibly sorry for myself. Instead, I stuck a huge middle finger up to everyone who had told me I couldn’t do it and took matters into my own hands. Safe to say, it felt amazing.