Reply To: PPVE Grads – Share your updates & stay connected

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Hi Rachel & Kristen (and everyone!),

It’s been a while and I just logged on to see if people are still posting so I figured I’d give a quick update.

Well, I’m still in my current job, but taking baby steps – I definitely had hoped I’d be further along by now, but I’m also trying to go easy on myself and recognize that this is going to take time. I have made strides to improve my life outside of work which definitely have helped!

I’ve applied for some jobs but not a ton (maybe 15 since January). I find it really hard to find time to apply – usually when I get home I have a headache from looking at a screen all day, so the last thing I want to do is look at my computer some more. And weekends are usually when we have fun things planned (and errands), so it’s hard to squeeze in.

I am also still struggling with what direction to go in; I still feel strongly that my work has to be my passion so I keep looking for plant/horticulture roles even though after the PPVE I think I should find a remote or admin/support-type role. I feel like my resume is geared towards horticulture/landscape, but I’m trying to take a step back to a more thriver-friendly admin role. I tried the skills resume, but think I need to make it even more generic. I’m also not sure how to address any potential interview questions about why I am changing industries or why I want to “take a step back” career-wise. I don’t know how to be honest in saying I just want a job I can do and feel good about, but still have time for my life. How do I tell potential employers my career is not my number one priority in life without sounding lazy?

I did have an interview and an offer, but it would have been a massive pay cut, fewer benefits & no health coverage, and no more flexibility than I have now. The only benefit would have been doing something not in an office and more directly working with plants, so I turned it down. I didn’t want my desperation to land me in a job where I’d be just as unhappy with less money.

I’ve also been toying (again) with the idea of starting my own side business. I want to start selling my paintings on Etsy and I heard about this thing called art licensing where you give retailers the rights to print your work on their products. I just feel like it’s a catch-22 – I’m risk-averse so I don’t want to quit my job and just jump in, but I paint very infrequently due to limited time and stress from work, so I can’t really start until I have some quality original paintings that are worth selling. I definitely need to work on cutting back my Netflix consumption and using that time to paint. Maybe I’m just making excuses to protect myself from possible failure, but I would just love to have some long blocks of uninterrupted time to paint and I never seem to get those – life’s more “urgent” items always seem to be prioritized.

Anyways, sorry for writing so much. Thanks for reading and I hope everyone else is doing well on their journey!