Connecting students looking to make a difference with organizations looking for difference-makers. www.thoughtbasin.com
It can be hard sometimes to imagine, when you look at people who succeed, how hard it was for them to get there, and how that struggle leads to success. Nobody wants to write fawning articles about how somebody took a company to the ground, and burnt it, or how they spent 12 months looking desperately for a job. Still, it makes for a very distorted image. In an age of youth unemployment, and lost opportunities at non-existent internships and entry-level jobs, it almost seems like there is a community of youth that have been taught to expect nothing but the best for themselves; that is until they have to confront their first approach to an internship!
There are ways to grow stronger from unemployment rather than to sink into despair. These three lessons should help form the basis of career advice that keeps you looking forward, rather than backwords.
1-To succeed, you often have to struggle
Some of the most successful people in the world have had to take their lumps, and struggle, before they ever tasted the beginnings of success. It’s important to keep that in mind. Techcrunch, for example, is running a series on the failures of prominent entrepreneurs. It’s a refreshing take on how failure happens to everybody, and how really, it’s a step on how to progress, and learn. After all, once you learn what failure is, you can learn how to avoid it. http://techcrunch.com/tag/fail-week/
It’s something to really keep in mind, especially when you search for your first internship or entry-level job (and even way beyond that). So many small businesses, entrepreneurs, and successful people fail, and you never hear about them, but their struggle was the foundation of their later success. Your struggle to get out of unemployment will go somewhere eventually, if you try hard enough. Don’t let it consume you or take you down. These are hard times, but even in easier times, people have always had to struggle to get to where they could succeed.
2-Don’t be shy about asking others for help
In the same vein as realizing that struggling often happens, and is something that can be positive if you build from it, is the realization that you’re not alone, and it’s okay to talk about it, and to get other people’s help to see how to move forward. Learning through the struggle of youth unemployment, and getting people to give you valuable career advice pertinent to how to move forward, is probably the best thing you can do if you’re stuck in a rut looking for that first internship. There is a community of students around you, and people aware of the plight of youth, that are willing to help. You just have to go and signal that you need it. When you get that desired internship, or entry-level job, they’ll also be along for the successes, and you’ll have more people to celebrate with, and build on your success with! Go look for resources: your local career office, or youth employment association.
In Montreal, that would be YES Montreal (http://www.yesmontreal.ca/yes.php) which offers free coaching and mentoring, but all around the world there are plenty of resources out there for youth. You just need to go out there and search for them! You could even reach out to people through LinkedIn, or look for mentors in your networks. People generally want to help, they just need to know that you need it.
3-Remember what it was like, and pay it forward
The reason why there is such a community of people ready to support you is because everybody’s been through unemployment in their lives, and they want to take that and turn it into a learning experience for you, because they learned from it as well. The career advice they give and that boost you need to get to that internship will come, ideally, with a push inside yourself to do those very same things for youth in the future who will be looking up to you. Remember that that kid struggling for a summer job, and doing anything for an internship was once you, and pay it forward. You’ll be a part of a cycle of help and virtue that will power people up their desired career paths.
Ready to gain that real-world experience that will propel you to that desired internship or entry-level job? Join us at http://www.thoughtbasin.com as we launch in the fall. Meanwhile, enjoy the career advice we can offer you, and join us for the opportunities we can create for you!
At ThoughtBasin, we believe we are part of the solution for youth unemployment. We love what we are doing, and if you like it too, we urge you to let us know how we can do better for you, and what you have to say! Share and comment below, and reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to give us an interview, or a guest post about the topics we hold dear: youth unemployment, getting youth to solve real-world problems, and getting youth to get that first internship or entry-level job, and being placed in the position where they can engage with the world around them.