I’ve been reflecting on the past couple of years of my life lately (because I’m getting to the point where I have to make decisions,
ugh.) I believe if you want to look forward in life you should probably look back first to see number one: how far you’ve come, and number two: what you can do better.
The mistakes, the highs, the lows, what you valued the most at one point in time, what you no longer do, etc… it all comes in handy when you want to chase the next best thing.
Jobs are basically you selling your labour in exchange for a wage that allows you to live comfortably. I’ve decided I’d like to be a joyful labour-giver so I’m putting my past on paper (or on the internet in this case) and having a conversation with myself as to what I learned with each job I’ve had, and how they might help me navigate the future. You are more than welcome to join this conversation
and judge me for all my decisions.
Admin for my aunt’s business : my first ever real money-paying job at 15 years old.
Reason: I wanted to learn what it means to handle money.
Job requirements: I sat at a desk and helped my aunt put information into a program on her desktop in order to keep organized.
Lesson(s) learned: that desk jobs can be awfully boring and that, even though I’m organized, I need to stay on my feet for a living. But also: data bases are so important!!! And, working with family can be super fun!
Chuck E. Cheese cast member – I had my first real interview here and landed the job on the spot. (T’was great for my self esteem.)
Reason: I was ready to start my career. I wanted to work with kids because I’m an extravert and thrive in energetic settings.
Job requirements: cashier, party hostess, kid-check attendant, custodian, etc…
Lesson(s) learned: Customer service = learning how to control your tongue = developing incredible patience. I learned to be extra respectful to everyone working a job, no matter how small it may seem in the eyes of our society.
(Shoutout to all the CS/retail workers out there, the people who work day and night for minimum wage, and those who take on the toughest tasks to live an affordable life.)
Web Assistant – I took on this job as a risk in my first year of uni at Glendon, and truth be told: I had no idea whether I was qualified enough to do it.
Reason: I wanted to step out of my comfort zone and explore my career options.
Job requirements: help the research officer at the university keep the website creatively updated.
Lesson(s) learned: it’s okay to learn as you go, as long as you get the job done (properly). You never know what you will end up enjoying as a job. And, working from home is amazing.
Santa’s Helper: I took on this job as a seasonal one for extra cash and experience!
Reason: I was excited about Christmas and wanted to work a job that spreads the joy!
Job requirements: take photos of people with Santa.
Lesson(s) learned: Christmas is corporate. That is all. You want to spread joy this time of year? Help the less fortunate.
eAmbassador – I started getting paid to be an eAmbassador in my second year of Uni after volunteering in first year.
Reason: It sounded SUPER cool. Also, I used to write in high school for the newspaper so I thought why not make my own little newspaper blog-style.
Job requirements: blog, tweet, make videos, attend Open Houses, have meetings, work with a content team (best team ever).
Lesson(s) learned: that I am capable to do whatever I put my mind to. That I never realized a job opportunity could turn into a genuine passion and/or outlet for my creativity.
Employee at Centre Flavie-Laurent in Winnipeg: a charity that provides services and products (like furniture/clothing, etc…) to those in need.
Reason: I wanted to immerse myself in a French setting while helping people.
Job requirements: organizing the warehouse to help those who don’t have enough to sustain themselves.
Lesson(s) learned: people are amazing. Language is so helpful. Here’s more about this job in a blog I wrote last year because the lessons are infinite…
French teacher: I worked as a French teacher in 3 different settings at 3 different periods in my life: at a private school, at a summer camp, and within an organization.
Reason: I love working with kids, and I’m in the French BEd program, so this opportunity was inevitably in my path.
Job requirements: teach French, make meaningful connections, motivate, support, and work with teams.
Lesson(s) learned: that teaching is commendable because of how incredibly stressful it can be, yet how indefinitely fulfilling it will be.
Hostess for a YouTube series: my latest summer job!
Reason: I wanted to take on something new that I was afraid of doing! And, I love using media in innovative ways.
Job requirements: help first-year students navigate their way with the transition into University.
Lesson(s) learned: being in front of the camera is equally as fun as being behind it. Enunciate. Speak loudly into the mic. Practice. Step out of your comfort zone. Enjoy it.
This basically became a CV by accident but I’m glad I flushed out my past in this way and I’m so excited to see how my career grows after experiencing some of the most ambiguous jobs ever. You really can learn something wherever you are planted, but it’s up to you to use the lessons to your advantage. Here’s to the next best gig!
What’s a job that taught you the most in life? Would you say it might also influence you in making career decisions in the future?
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