A Year of Doing Things I’m Afraid Of

A picture of the blog I'm currently writing with the caption: "writing my last blog post"
When I first met with my supervisors to begin blogging for Life at U of T, I was suddenly unbelievably, irrationally nervous. I confidently applied for the role of Career Centre Blogger because I loved to write, I wanted to think more about my career, and I was qualified for the position. But as soon as I stepped back on campus to begin writing for the year, I was filled with self-sabotaging doubt.

Knowing My Limits

Definition of stress: a state of mental or emotional strain Source: http://copewithlife.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/stress.gif

Looking back, this was probably the busiest school year of my life. I balanced five co-curricular clubs, a full course load, and a weekly blog, which sometimes left me feeling stressed out and burnt-out. As the year draws to a close, final exams, essays, and projects and commitments are naturally starting to pile up, which have only increased my stress levels. I’ve barely been getting any sleep, and Kraft dinners have become a staple in my diet. Long story short: I have too much on my plate right now (macaroni included).

Exploring Online Identity Through LinkedIn

Picture on linkedin logo with people in front of it
A realistic portrayal of my LinkedIn experience
I'm about as good at operating LinkedIn as my grandmother is at using Facebook. To put it simply, I'm not the best at LinkedIn, which is why I attended the LinkedIn Lab workshop at the Career Centre. I recently made a profile a few months ago when I realized that building an online brand is extremely important when finding a job. It's kind of unfortunate: young professionals nowadays need a solid resume, a unique LinkedIn profile, a blog, and a good online footprint in order to get a job, while other professionals who didn't grow up with the Internet just needed a good resume.

Networking is Getting a Little Easier

A wordle of job-related words
Job-related words... get it? Picture via Pixabay
So, networking is something I’ve always struggled with. I’m afraid people will think I’m trying to schmooze. I’m afraid of awkward silences. I’m, overall, a very self-conscious person when it comes to networking. However, after going to workshops and networking events—mainly because of my Career Centre Student Blogger job—networking is starting to get a little easier every time.

The Bullet Journal: Does It Actually Work?

Picture of page of bullet journal that has two points: "make bullet journal" and "write blog" My productivity is directly related to me keeping an agenda or calendar. For example, I still haven’t bought a 2017 agenda, and I’ve been tremendously less productive than I have been with an agenda. So, in my current predicament of lacking an agenda and suffering the consequences, I decided to try out a bullet journal for the first time. I've read stories online about professionals changing their professional and personal lives through the bullet journal, and about the benefits of using bullet journals for career planning. However, I never got around to trying it out. I guess you could say I needed a bullet journal to remember to get a bullet journal. The first thing I wrote down in my bullet journal was:
  • “Make bullet journal”

Commuting Thoughts

Motion-blurred road
It's a metaphor. Picture via Pixabay
I always seem to have epiphanies about my life and my career when I’m doing mundane things. When I’m in the shower, washing dishes, or cooking, my thoughts start wandering, and I end up coming up with all sorts of ideas. Most of them are terrible, or weird, but sometimes, they actually lead to relevant insights.

Learning How to Own My Interview

Picture of a laptop and pen and notepad
Picture via Pixabay.
What's your one-minute success story? This was the first question we had to ponder at the Career Centre's Own Your Interview workshop, and I had no idea what to say. In my defense, it was 10 am, and I was incredibly sleep deprived. It was certainly a wake up call that I was NOT prepared to own my interview any time soon.

My Resume Wasn’t As Good As I Thought It Was

A crude illustration of a resume
Resume writing is more difficult than this illustration makes it out to be. Image courtesy of Pixabay.
I stepped into the halls of Sid Smith, resume in hand, feeling confident. I had a few questions in mind that I wanted to ask the career educator I was placed with at the Resume Blitz, but I wasn’t feeling completely hopeless or lost. (For now, at least.)