The Yomiuri Shimbun Dear Troubleshooter:
I’m a female university student in my 20s who is trying to find a job. I’m at a loss about what I want to do.
I started job hunting partly because I thought doing it could repay my parents’ affection for me — they’ve provided me with a very comfortable life and even enabled me to study in the United States.
When I started job hunting, I felt positive and found it interesting because it gave me a chance to learn about various companies and meet many people.
After a while, however, I faced a severe reality — it’s not easy to get a job offer from any company. This made me feel so negative that I have even come to think job hunting may be the hardest, bitterest experience of my life. I hate myself when I’m being interviewed for a job that I can’t feel enthusiastic about very much.
I know some people say we should focus on getting a job for now because we often feel rewarded after working in a profession for some time. But I’m worried I may become tied up with work and not have a chance to think about my future, if I just follow the social norm of finding a job right after graduation to start working in any way possible.
I have no idea what to do after graduating from university. I’ve totally lost my motivation to find a job.
Dear Ms. K:
I may sound cantankerous, but it seems you’re trying to find an excuse to take a break because you’re exhausted from looking for work.
Job hunting is similar to studying for university entrance examinations. The more we think about its meaning, the more we become unsure about it. However, I believe it’s good for you to have a certain period in which you just do as other students do and focus on your job hunting efforts without thinking too much about it.
If you have no idea what to do, it may be good to have someone else decide. The word “vocation” means a job that is suited to you and rewarding for you to do. It originally means work given to you by divine conviction. If you can get a job offer as a result of your job hunting, I suggest you accept it as your vocation at this point.
Every profession exists because someone needs to do it to maintain our society. If you’re given a job, it means you’re needed by society.
I suggest you start working any way you can, as I believe you may become motivated to do the job over the course of time. If you find it’s not your type of work, you can start looking for a different job. Act first before worrying.
Masahiro Yamada, professor