Change of Attitude

by Victoria Kert 10 days ago in humanity

Just a Small Shift Can Change Your Life

Change of Attitude
Photo by Angelina Litvin on Unsplash

I graduated with Academic Excellence and a mental illness that had begun to truly take its toll. I had been inducted into the Golden Key Honor Society and Tau Sigma. I had been awarded by the Multi-ethnic group. I had been on the Dean's list for several years. I had a 3.65 GPA. I had received scholarships for my work. I had a BA in Communications and went back to school for a BA in Psychology after being turned down from a Master’s Program in Industrial-Organizational Psychology.

I was furious; I had the grades, I had the experience and the work ethic. I also had a mental illness that was determined to wreck me. Voices and negative energies surrounded me. Things that I did not understand haunted me. And images of people appeared to me. It felt like I was in a movie and the audience had more say in what I was doing than I did.

I took a job that was fine for a high school graduate but made no use of my college skills. I was deeply frustrated that the degree that I had earned led to no job advancement. I had applied to what I felt was the universe and still had few callbacks, few responses, and even fewer interviews. I applied to at least ten places every evening.

I volunteered to make good use of my time. It was important for me to make myself useful and I always had the desire to give back to the community. I spent hours of my time giving for no pay. At my job, I was making $10.00 and hour. I was on food stamps, WIC, social security, and social security disability.

During this time, I went back to school for another Bachelor's degree, this time in psychology. I thought that this would increase my chances of being able to get into the Master's program that I originally applied for. I graduated with good standing and felt confident that I would find a job that would make good use of my college-learned skills.

When I finally felt that I had found my place with a job assisting others with mental illness, I was horrified to find out that they would not hire me. I went to several interview rounds, did a shadowing, and everything seemed well. I had good references and a good amount of experience. When I received the call that they would not hire me, I was devastated and went to the gym to release my aggression and frustration.

I felt inept because I truly believed I was capable of more than a retail job and had outstanding credentials to back up my story. I had been inducted into two honor societies and been on the Deans list for 3 consecutive semesters, I had two Bachelor’s Degrees and the will to succeed.

The experience left me very low in self-esteem and I started to believe the negative voices. I became tired, depressed, and lethargic. I kept trying to be positive, but the anxiety was more than I could handle. I was 31 with no career, lived with my parents, and was a single mother.

Interview after interview, I was rejected and thrown deeper into despair.

Finally, after a long day at work, I had an interview. I decided that I had been to too many interviews to feel anxious. I decided that I was going to enjoy every moment of the interview, forget about the competition and just enjoy life. I went in, talked with the people that were interviewing for the same job, smiled, hoped for them, listened to the interviewer, and simply enjoyed being in the moment.

I got the job.

And that was when I changed my perspective on everything. I decided that I was going to enjoy life, enjoy every moment, enjoy every sadness, every anger, every emptiness, every silence, every voice, every hallucination, every class, every person, everything.

Victoria Kert
Victoria Kert
Read next: Why Denny's Is the Perfect Starter Job for a Cook
Victoria Kert
See all posts by Victoria Kert