As of today, I've been unemployed for a whole month. Ironically, time flies when you're doing nothing.
This time of not having a job has been full of mixed emotions. Sometimes, I'm ecstatic to have the freedom to do almost whatever I want everyday. Other times, I feel very limited in what I am able to do thanks to my new found poorness that inevitably comes with not having a job. I'll sometimes feel guilty about not stooping down low to take whatever job I can find. But I also don't want to be stuck working some job that I will hate. I can't really decide how I feel about being unemployed, but I'm starting to be ready to have a job again.
I was encouraged by my mentor to use my time without a job to do things that I normally wouldn't have the opportunity to do. My first attempt at this was to teach myself C++ (a programming language). This lasted 2 days before I quit because it was boring and I cared very little about it. I have had the opportunity to go on some bike rides I don't normally get to go on. When I was working and going to church in Golden, my bike riding consisted of 12.5 miles to Golden, 12.5 miles back, 6 days a week. That's 25 miles a day, basically riding the same thing over and over again. Don't get me wrong, it's still better than driving an hour long commute everyday, but for riding a bike, it wasn't very fun. So now that I am not forced to ride to Golden everyday, I have the time and energy to ride to other places in the Denver metro area. With the boredom that comes from being at home for so long everyday, I've been much more eager to spend time with friends in the evenings. With friends I've played disc golf, hiked, biked, went to Rockies games, etc. I'm much more eager to do things like this when I don't feel like I'm eliminating any relaxing alone time. I get enough of that during the day. With all my free time, I've worked on my disc golf throwing skills by going to the field across from my house several times. A few weeks ago, my backhand drive had zero power--it was pathetic. But after putting a few hours into working on my form, I have over 50% better power than before for my backhand drive. And the most recent thing that I've started doing that I normally wouldn't do is to learn how to knit. It's fun enough and I'm happy to at least know how to do it so that someday I'll have the joy of making my own hat. I would have taken up woodworking, but I thought that knitting would be much cheaper...and it is, considering how slowly I knit. Another thing I should do is write more blog posts. This blog has become quite a successful one in the past 6 months or so. To give you an idea of the success of my blog, I haven't written a single post or shared a single link to my blog in the month of May, but it has had 719 page views in that one month.
The job search is annoying. I apply for one job every weekday, so I've applied for quite a few jobs after a month. I've had a few phone interviews and an in-person interview. Thankfully, I will be receiving unemployment, which means I can actually hold out for the good jobs for a while since I won't have to worry too much about making ends meet. I'm still casually applying for teaching jobs, but my focus is much more on jobs that I'm actually qualified for. Things like Thin Film Processing Engineer jobs. It feels much more natural to be applying for jobs like this that I'm actually qualified for. I think I would make a good teacher, but my resume doesn't make me look like I would be. It would also be nice to have a high paying job that I can use to pay off my student loans in less than 10 years.
So that's my first month of unemployment. It's fun, boring, annoying and relaxing all at the same time.