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Directionless:- Career ambitions

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    Okay, this thread is probably very common and all...

    I just feel very directionless with regards my career goals. Go back four-five, even six years ago and I knew where I wanted to be. For the first time in my life Six years ago, I knew, having embarked on a two year Design related course in college. I knew I was good in the creative arts, had a passion for ideas.

    I knew that straight afterwards I'd go off to University to study at degree level and then hopefully land a job in Graphic Design. I didn't work out this way.

    I guess you could say I felt burned out mid-way through my third year. I felt disillusioned. I sort of enjoyed my course, but not enough that it got me up early in a morning, like it did when I was a college student. Still it was better than working minimum wage in my day job.

    Problem was/is that, post-uni I felt so disillusioned and ill equipped for industry, that a) I feel I'm not good enough, isn't many jobs, and b) I feel under-skilled.

    One thing I do often find is that, there is a huge disparity between those of my friends that have graduate jobs and those that don't. Obviously its subjective, and can depend on degree area. Some are more motivated than others, but maybe this has a lot to do with prior experience, connections, networking and social capital.

    Many of the people I know in graduate level roles (straight after uni or within 12 months) landed those because of relations to powerful relatives, friends etc., nepotism.

    I really want to kick start an actual graduate level career- as opposed to working in fast food at age 25 with little direction in life.

    I am ambitious in the sense I want to get out of this rut. I used to be very focussed. I know i want to be in the creative field to use my degree, however, I need to narrow it down. I have a CV and a portfolio, but it needs re-doing.

    In a sense I wish I'd done a different degree, as my qualification seems very sort of inadequate for the market. Its all very nice on paper and in theory, but means very little vocationally. I feel I didn't learn any valuable skills to the employer-- instead satisfied examiners for three years.

    Anybody feel the same?

    You need to put a steel rod down your back. I feel your pain but the only person who can help you is you. So get your portfolio redone. Write some applications. Network. Go to events, conferences, whatever. Call in favours, ask, beg. You are going to be well out of your comfort zone but there we are.

    From what you have written you used to have it all but just lost your way. This happens. You still have it. You just need to reconnect with yourself. Take small steps and don't fret about the next step too much. Go for it. If you think you can do it you can.

    Good luck!

    There are loads of people out there currently in your position - I was one of them until recently. I stayed in education until MA level but was working full-time in retail adamant I was going to progress. It took a real wake up call to realise that I was massively over-qualified for the peanuts I was being paid and I actually had a passion for something else that I had ignored.

    Sometimes it means starting at the bottom again. I volunteered for several organisations just to have some field experience (and it was SO invaluable and makes my CV look awesome) - but It was free and time-consuming.

    Sometimes it means going back into education - I'm returning to Uni to do my PGCE. I'm technically 3 years behind the 'crowd', but who cares? I've lived, I've gained great experience and I'm a lot more focused than I was at 22. I'm going to fly through.

    You want to work in the creative field - find a company, ask for work experience.
    You want to update your portfolio - Canva.com have some great CV templates that could really show off your artistic flair (have a look)
    Volunteer - Charities can't afford expensive things. Win-win. (do-it.org.uk have loads of opportunites or charityjob)
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