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  1. #1
    Can't be satisfied. Peter Deadpan's Avatar
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    Default Help me escape this shitty career and better my life

    It's no secret that I dislike my job as a dog groomer. It's been 12 long years and the stress of it never gets easier. It's physically demanding, and I don't think I can tolerate more than a couple more years. Emotionally, I am spent. I just really need to reduce stress in my life, and getting a new job seems the easiest change.

    Easy is subjective though. I have no marketable experience simply because of the fact that I have been doing this for so long. I also have no degree. I do have a 4.0, but no one is going to give a fuck if I didn't even graduate. I am in the middle of applying for a new job, one that involves providing support for those living with HIV/AIDS. It is entry level, but given the competitive nature of the market, I really have no "edge" to speak of.

    Does anyone have any tips on sculpting an eye-catching cover letter when the applicant lacks direct experience? I read a few articles for pointers, but perhaps someone here is involved in hiring, or perhaps someone has had success in making such a career change.

    It's either that, or it's time to sell a kidney
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  2. #2
    Can't be satisfied. Peter Deadpan's Avatar
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    Nevermind. It's a limited term employment opportunity.

    Sigh. (code for cry)

  3. #3
    Senior Member Tiger Owl's Avatar
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    Look up some good guides for writing a resume (as apposed to a CV). A resume will capitalize on your strengths, energy, drive, and personality, where a CV focuses on experience and accomplishments. Sell your strengths, and being dedicated to one job for 12 years is a strength, as is maintaining good grades. They show you are smart, driven and capable, show them you are trainable, mature and not lazy and you will stand above the crowd of applicants. The worst thing an employer can say is no. Good luck in your search!
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  4. #4
    🍓 girl in an 🍎 world SurrealisticSlumbers's Avatar
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    First off, I greatly enjoy reading your posts on here, Peter.

    I also can relate to doing a remedial job for a while and feeling "stuck."

    I don't have experience in hiring, so I'm not sure that any advice I could give would be of much help as I'm ... sorta in the same boat. What I can tell you is that there are ways that one could parlay their job experience and references acquired thru working at that position for so long into something else.

    Have you looked into receptionist jobs at places like veterinary clinics or any business involving animals? Doubt specialized training would be needed if you worked an entry-level receptionist or filing job at one such office, using your experience in the field of animal care to your advantage. You are accustomed to being around animals, and I assume, are an "animal person."

    I've vaguely heard of pet massage therapy being a somewhat steady career, where one can be their own boss; set their own hours. You'd have to market yourself, but I think self-employment is possible with a job such as that. And, I doubt that there are any lofty credentials needed - if anything, you'd go through training to become certified and get a license of some sort... not sure what that'd cost. But, it isn't that different from what you're currently doing - you'd still get to be around animals but I'd imagine it's a much more relaxed setting, with some autonomy, in which a caring person who loves animals would flourish.

    I do not recommend going on websites such as Indeed.com because they are filled with scams and jobs where they want you to have 5+ years of experience in an extremely obscure field and two Master's degrees... Also, avoid Craigslist like the plague!!!

    P.S. A website I recommend for crafting a professional-looking and well-designed resume is Canva.com. It's free to use, and I feel like it gives one that extra "edge."

    P.S.S. You could still put on your resume that you attended that college from 20xx - 20xx and specify what your area of study was and what your cumulative GPA was. You just can't put "Bachelor of x" ... I'd think an employer would still be impressed that you did achieve such excellent grades while in school, even if you did not officially graduate.
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  5. #5
    Liberator Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Deadpan View Post
    It's no secret that I dislike my job as a dog groomer. It's been 12 long years and the stress of it never gets easier. It's physically demanding, and I don't think I can tolerate more than a couple more years. Emotionally, I am spent. I just really need to reduce stress in my life, and getting a new job seems the easiest change.

    Easy is subjective though. I have no marketable experience simply because of the fact that I have been doing this for so long. I also have no degree. I do have a 4.0, but no one is going to give a fuck if I didn't even graduate. I am in the middle of applying for a new job, one that involves providing support for those living with HIV/AIDS. It is entry level, but given the competitive nature of the market, I really have no "edge" to speak of.

    Does anyone have any tips on sculpting an eye-catching cover letter when the applicant lacks direct experience? I read a few articles for pointers, but perhaps someone here is involved in hiring, or perhaps someone has had success in making such a career change.

    It's either that, or it's time to sell a kidney
    .
    What sort of work would you be interested in? The cover letter should suit the job, and the resume might need tailoring for it as well. Just off the cuff, I would start by looking at the big picture of what you do, which might include: interacting with customers, handling animals, dealing with chemicals, following and implementing safety regulations, etc. If you do other jobs around the grooming shop like bookkeeping, ordering supplies, advertising/marketing, etc., include those, too.

    Have you had any luck networking? I'm told that is the best way to find a new job. You learn about opportunities before they even become public - sometimes before the manager even knows they should hire someone.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...
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  6. #6
    darkened dreams Ravenetta's Avatar
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    It can help to start articulating the ideal job and then negotiate it back to concrete options. Also, you mentioned having a 4.0 on your college credits. Could you transfer them into a local community college (tuition is usually cheapest) and put together an associates degree in a relatively short period of time?

    I see some advantage career-wise to start with an inexpensive associates degree, so that you can get a job in an area related to your ideal career, and then go onto a bachelor's degree if you want while working in the field. Many professional jobs list a degree and two years of experience in their posting, and the plan I outlined is one of the few ways to achieve that. No one ever told me that, though.

    For shorter term plans, it also helps to define what sort of environment you would like to work in. Is office-related work an option for you? or do you want something more hands-on?
    bunny omi

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  7. #7
    Can't be satisfied. Peter Deadpan's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice everyone.

    There are a lot of complications that make it difficult for me to settle on a plan of action.

    I'm a single mom of two without your average support system. I have no one who can assist with childcare. School is virtually out of the picture for that reason, combined with the fact that degrees are costly and less valuable these days. The market is saturated and competitive. The market where I live is not great; the population here in the two main cities is less than 70,000. If I were to leave my job now, I would be limited to entry level positions which pay no more than $10/hour. There are a few jobs that pay $12/hour, but they are mostly call center jobs. A few years ago, I was diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis, and because of that I cannot sit for 8 hours a day. I would quickly end up in excruciating pain. So, call center jobs are out. There are a couple very good hospitals here, but I am certain one will not hire me because I have tried several times (they do a credit check and I had a difficult time paying medical bills for awhile, so I'm sure that is a major reason they aren't considering me). The other hospital is an option, but again, we are looking at jobs that pay perhaps $10-12/hour.

    I cannot live on $12/hour. My current job affords me the luxury of freedom of schedule and pay that cannot be matched without a degree. I have considered opening my own grooming salon, but I just do not think I can handle the stress of such an endeavor at this point in time.

    I also lack basic MS Office knowledge, which could be remedied by taking some courses, but again... then I am sitting for 8 hours a day (as a receptionist).

    I feel trapped. I feel like I fucked up and there is no fixing it now. I know that is negative, but it's actually pretty realistic too.

    I am so desperate that I am currently considering housekeeping at a boutique hotel, but the pay is probably shit so that is sadly also a pipe dream. Emphasis on the "sadly."
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  8. #8
    clever fool Typh0n's Avatar
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    You didn't fuck up. You tried something, and it didn't work out for you. But that's what everyone does: there's no way of knowing if you will enjoy a line of work or not. You just have to go for it. You went for it.

    I find it helps to boil it down to what you really want to do, what you are passionate about, and then try to balance it out with the economic realities (which in your case don't look very good tbh, and this is no fault of yours). I understand you have two children, so responsibility is there and you aeren't as free as you could be if you had no kids.

    What is it you want to do? If Typh0n had a magic wand, (which he doesn't) and could make it so that anything is possible, what would you like to do? It helps to know what you want, and to balance it out with what is possible, since your problem is that you dislike what you do, shouldn't the solution first be looking at what you do like? What do you want to do, forget about the economic/money making aspect of it first, or if it's not attainable without a degree, don't think of the "how can I do this" first think of the "what I want".

    Sorry if this is useless btw, I am just trying to help, using advice that was given to me in similar situations.

  9. #9
    The Bat Man highlander's Avatar
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    I don't think people read cover letters. I have hired hundreds of people and can't recall ever seeing one. The recruiters strip that out before things get to me. The point about having a good resume is key and I like what @Tiger Owl said related to that. The thing is to get into a career where you are using your natural talents and are able to spend some percentage of your day (even if it's only 20%) doing things that energize you.

    What do you feel are the natural talents that you possess which have had the greatest impact on your success in life so far? What do you love doing?

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  10. #10
    abcdenfp Abcdenfp's Avatar
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    Feeling stagnant is really truly a subtle form of torture , I can say for myself after 10 years of sitting at a desk I wanted to shoot myself, and I couldn't see any other path, it just looked like a long repetitive line of this is my life.. wtf and then because I really couldn't see any way out I started very small , I started with this book
    Morning Pages | Julia Cameron Live
    and I know it's going to seem like bullshit but you've really have to start somewhere and this provided for me a canvas to Build out what I wanted my life to look like and if you and I had the time and some tea I would show you what two years later my life became .. build it and they will come . Dream it and I promise it is possible. Write about it for a year and you will have the blue print
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