If there’s one skill I possess in life, it’s the ability to make commitments to events and situations that have really, really terrible schedules.
Example A: I took a job at a bank where I worked 9am – 6pm on weekdays, and 9am – 3 pm weekends. My days rotated, so while I did have all my on and off days written down it was impossible to make hard commitments with the hours I had.
Example B: I took a teaching assistant job, that is smack in the middle of the day three days a week. I can’t work any waitressing jobs in the morning, unless I get an unbelievably early shift at a diner. I also can’t work any afternoon jobs, because I have class 4 hours after the class I teach ends.
Don’t forget, I also have a husband who I want to spend time with, dogs who need to be played with, and homework that has to be done. What’s an overachiever to do?
Here are some of the steps I have been taking to ensure that my job hunt is successful:
1.Have a clear picture of what days and hours you are available – and willing – to work.
If you know when you’re free, you have a better idea of what type of job you should be looking for. Part-time? Full-time? Flexible? Telecommute? Per diem? There are tons of jobs out there that break the 9-5 tradition.
2. What field are your hours best suited to?
If you’re free after 2pm, there are many afternoon babysitting jobs available for parents who cannot get their children off the school bus. At $15 an hour (my rate, yours may vary), I could make $60 just for picking a child up, feeding him dinner and helping with homework from 2-6.
Maybe you go in to work later, and work from noon – 8pm. A morning coffee shop may be looking for people to help with the morning rush. Again, there are tons of jobs out there that will fit your schedule. You just have to look!
3. Be realistic with your goals for employment.
Sometimes I get a little over zealous when I think of all the things I want to do in life. I think it’s a good quality of mine because it keeps me working toward the life that my husband and I want, but it can also be frustrating when I base my “facts of life” on something that hasn’t actually been proven. For example: I had no idea I wouldn’t find a waitressing job by now. I was convinced that someone would hire me to start the day after I finished at the bank. Instead of counting on something I didn’t have yet, I should have given myself a few weeks of “just in case this doesn’t work, don’t freak out” time.
4. Be willing to be busy.
If you already have a terrible schedule, adding more work to it will make you busy. Just accept it, and move on! There’s no point lamenting your freer days. They will come back, but for now: it’s hustle time!
Do you have a difficult schedule to work around? How do you do it?