Job Transition Lessons

When I was in kindergarten we had an assignment to make a book of an original story based on what we wanted to be when we grew up. I loved the artistic part of it… using glue, lots of crayons, making up a story. My story was about a heart that became a police officer. I didn’t draw a girl or a grown up woman… I just used a heart. I remember loving the whole process of creating something and using my imagination. But in thinking about this story, it’s quite striking to think of my “artistic use” of a heart, instead of a human form.

Flash forward to the present day and I have been in a job for eight years that never really worked for me. It was my college summer job and I was hired on full time right after I graduated college. I was extremely lucky in one aspect to have secured a job right out of college. I’ve known the people that I work with since I was a kid, and there is a certain level of comfort. The actual job has nothing to do with creativity or using my heart. I’ve come to terms with the fact that no amount of convenience will make this job work with my personality. So, in researching what I want to be when I grow up, I’ve discovered quite a few things… and they all lead back to my kindergarten story.

Six months ago I decided to get my real estate license. I took the classes online and studied constantly to understand something that was relatively foreign to me.

Why real estate?

Well, it’s helping people ultimately. It’s about finding someone a their haven or helping them sell their home to move onto the next chapter of their life. I knew I would still need a full time job while building up my real estate business. See, I’m a millennial, so I don’t have a huge savings because that extra money goes to paying off my student loans. People my age know that we need to work twice as hard as our elders to even attempt to get half of what they had. Multiple income streams are a necessity. So that left me thinking of what I should do for a full time job. And I thought back to the story once again. The heart of helping people is real estate, but the love I had when creating that book was a fire that has always been in my spirit. Whether it was in acting or writing, I have always been a creative. So, where do I go with that?

My new job hunt is in the realm of marketing, content marketing and copy writing. It mixes the technical aspects of the skills I have attained since graduation and mixes them with my natural artistic abilities and curiosities. Looking at job listings can be incredibly intimidating. I’m constantly thinking that I don’t have the proper skills to transition over. Or seeing things like, “minimum of 5 years experience” automatically makes me feel like I’m out of the running. But I’m focusing on the transferable skills that I have that I didn’t even think could be assets. For instance, project management is a huge skill that can transfer across multiple fields. Time management, delegation, social media, my English degree, etc. I actually have a lot of skills that can be used in the field I’m choosing to go into.

So my job, while looking for a new job, is to not second guess myself.

Moving into something new is scary but also exciting. My penchant for learning is valuable in the job search because I’m genuinely curious about the company’s I’m looking up and the potential role I may fill. The networking aspect is also very intriguing to me. For so long I have clung to the same group of people, so when I go out into the world to network, I feel like Aladdin and Jasmine about to belt out singing “A Whole New World”.

I don’t know what my life is going to look like by the end of this year, but I know it will be different. I am determined, I am motivated and I feel the need for change. The little kindergarten girl is still in me and I am beyond grateful to say that I have not allowed the harsh world to let her to die.

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Michelle Sabato

Michelle is an actor and writer who was born and raised in Cleveland's Little Italy. Some of Michelle's hobbies include: reading, writing, film and carrying conversations solely made up of movie quotes.

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