What Do You Do When They Move Your Cheese?

Flämischer Meister des 17. Jahrhunderts / unknown Flemish Master of the 17th Century. Public Domain.

Most writers readily come to terms with the fact that we do a lot of work that may or may not ever pay off with wealth or acclaim. We enter the maze willingly, knowing that the Big Cheese is a pipe dream only a few of us will ever see. We run, content with the crumbs we pick up along the way and the occasional bit of fromage that we find.

Other jobs aren’t like that. It is possible to work towards a degree, certification, or promotion and logically expect that it will lead to an improved job situation. Yet so many people are yelling at their computers, frustrated beyond comprehension that although they are the ideal candidate for a job and their resume reflects all the supposed key words and phrases, they can’t even get an interview.

My hubby is in this position now. He’s an IT guy with an excellent resume, but in spite of his degree, excellent work history and stellar references, he never gets a simple call. We have no idea why, and no way of knowing.

He’s not the only one. I see it on my social network feed all the time; people who can’t seem to get past the magical algorithm that chooses which applicants get a call and which get ignored. Of course it’s frustrating. They can see the cheese. They deserve the cheese. They’re more than willing to settle for a small piece of the cheese instead of the whole wheel.

Then they look up, and see some Rat picking up the cheese and moving it somewhere else.

So what’s the smart thing to do? A year or so ago, I’d say “I’m plucky! Perseverance pays off in the end! I see which way that Rat went…I can get there! I can get that cheese!” Now, I’m not so sure. I think that Rat is smirking at me. I think it gets a kick out of seeing me and my hubby chase it down just to move it away at the last minute.

This Round of Words in 80 Days is just about over. In April well start a new round.

I wonder where the cheese will be by then?

About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice.
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2 Responses to What Do You Do When They Move Your Cheese?

  1. You’re right. We writers pour our hearts into our work, never knowing if we’ll ever get the big break. I’m content knowing that a few people are reading and (hopefully) enjoying my stories. For me, I try to focus on the creation and connection of writing–creating worlds and characters and sharing their stories with readers. I’d like to make a living at it, but if I focus on that, I get worried/anxious/frustrated. So instead I focus on the joy of creating.

    I’m sorry your husband’s job search is frustrating. In IT, it’s hard to find that balance between being qualified but not overqualified. I hope he finds the right fit soon!

  2. shanjeniah says:

    My Accomplice, who is a chef with impressive, diverse, and award-winning skills, wasn’t getting any calls at all, and he was seeing the same jobs posting again and again after he applied for them.

    So, on a hunch, I asked if I could check his profile – and found that he had transposed two digits in his contact number! People actually had been calling him – but at the wrong number!

    He’s working now. It’s not an ideal job; it pays a bit less than he was making, and that was modest. But the unemployed time allowed him to focus on a business venture he’s been dreaming of for years, and now he’s almost ready to launch.

    It also gave me a nudge toward a very part-time re-entry back into the workforce, now that the kids are older (my younger will be a teen in July; my older, 16 in September), and like being home alone. Since we have always homeschooled, I was focused on that when they were younger, but it feels like a good time to pick up a few hours where I can make folks’ days a bit brighter. I’ve had a longstanding desire to be a barista; that would be fun!

    So I’m creating my CV now, and hope to be working by the time spring is over.

    I hope things turn around for you and your IT guy – he sounds like a nice grilled cheese might be just the thing!

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