With this long glorious summer break drawing to a close it got me thinking about what I’ve been up to and how helpful or not so helpful the things I’ve been spending my time on could prove to me in the future.
Since my exploits in Germany drew to a close I’ve been working in a factory packing bulbs (of the plant variety) into pretty boxes and pots ready for sale across the UK and helping my friend renovate his new house (it smelt and looked like an old gents pub so that’s been no easy task).
All of this got me thinking: even if we’re spending our time doing things that seem completely unrelated to our ultimate career goals that doesn’t mean that we’re wasting our time. Many seemingly unrelated activities and work experience can furnish you with more transferable skills than you might ever have imagined. I’d also like to stress that you should never feel ashamed of the places that you’ve worked or the things that you’ve taken part in for that very reason (and more besides). So whether you’ve worked in a fast food restaurant, a local shop, pub or factory, you are likely to have developed the skills to approach a new range of tasks and almost certainly grown in confidence.
Being able to reflect upon your experiences and identify what you have learnt from them is a really important thing to be able to do and although it seems like an arduous task when you begin, you’ll soon get the hang of it. An example from how I’ve been spending my time recently would read as follows: I am a perseverant person as demonstrated by my recent performance in the battle against our nicotine coated living room ceiling; it kept coming back but I refused to give in and soon my brown and smelly adversary was no more! KO!
In all seriousness the moral of the story is to never underestimate what you can learn and take away from your part time and casual work experience that could help you in the future. So when you look through your CV and all you see are irrelevant experiences that don’t relate in the slightest to the work you hope to pursue in the future, take another look.