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I’m getting exhausted chasing my career as a strategist. Went to portfolio school recently and kept searching for a role, can’t get the first round interview ( continued)

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Sorry to hear things are going so poorly, and there’s really nothing to say that will magically make it better. But I can say that if you want it, you have to hang in for as long as it takes. I had a similar situation in my career. I was a studio designer, mostly making PowerPoint decks, and I wanted to be a copywriter. And I spent lots of money on classes, and lots of time developing a portfolio - a portfolio that the CCO of the agency I was working at actually loved! And still, it took about 5 years to land the actual title. I went through multiple rounds of working with a recruiter, them getting laid off, and me having to rebuild my contacts. Even with the boss pushing for me, it just didn’t happen, and I saw multiple juniors get hired while I was just trying to pitch in on any projects they would let me do. And then, one day, I got called into my boss’s office and he told me they were moving me into the creative department. And about another 5 years or so later, I’m an ACD. I don’t want to tell you anything as trite as “hang in there”, but persistence and perseverance is the only way to get there. And it fucking sucks, but it also makes it that much sweeter when it finally happens. So, good luck, and I hope it happens for you.

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Thank you, recently i’m having lots of pressure than any moments in my life including the job. I may am having too much stress that creates anxiety, i cannot sleep without alcohol, my hands are sweaty 24/7. I know there is no magical solution, but i may needed to hear what i wanted to hear from you, because i don’t want to talk about this to my close friends or colleagues. Thank you for your considerate response and I hope everything is all right with you.

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I don't know if this will resonate with you, but realizing it did for me. Sometimes people don't actually want an opinionated junior even if they say they do. They want someone they know can do the work. I'd also consider looking at what all these first interviews have in common. Are you aiming for too high of a salary? Are the interviews awkward? Is there a mismatch between your portfolio/resume and you as a person?

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The industry is in meltdown and is going through unprecedented change. There are a lot of people struggling in ad land, through ghosting, layoffs and hiring freezes etc. That doesn’t solve your problem, but you can at least realize you’re not alone and some of this is a symptom of an industry that is in a form of crisis.

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Would you say you’re better at communicating in person or through writing? Just reading your post here, I feel like writing maybe isn’t your strongest suit, so I would encourage you to meet people for coffee or an informational interview rather than apply with a resume/cover letter drop, as it would give you the chance to communicate face-to-face. Also, if your job search is making you dependent on alcohol, I’d say stop looking for your dream job right now. Do something easier that pays well so you’re not broke, and work on your writing and confidence so you can try to get your dream job when you’re in a better place. No job is worth becoming an anxious alcoholic over. Focus on your happiness first and work will fall into place. You’ve got this! ❤️

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Maybe it’s a cultural thing. You might not be striking the right tone or feel like a personality match because of cultural differences even if you’re not doing anything wrong. It sucks that people have these biases. Assuming you are looking for a job in the US, do you have an American friend who can give you some honest feedback and tips to make a good first impression in emails and meetings? It’s great that you speak multiple languages. Plus, if you’re an international traveler and a worldly person that is a positive thing. But I imagine it would be hard to compete against others who have stronger writing skills. You might consider getting into an agency in another department like analytics or account and then moving your way into strategy after they get to know you. Many strategists don’t start out as strategists, I didn’t. It’s hard to break into but you can get there! Good luck!!

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Today I just found out that I'm not landing a spot at my dream agency ANYMORE because the entire structure changed and they stopped hiring. I was supposed to move to another country and start that job in less than a month. Next week I will "celebrate" a year since I've been looking for a job. I've been to many interviews and people asked me why am I not getting any job because I'm clearly very qualified for the position I'm applying for. But none of them would then give me the FUCKING job. I am seriously desperate and lost all confidence in myself. I started having nightmares of me being rejected everywhere, not only in the job context and I literally don't see myself ever getting a job. I went to portfolio school, got tons of student awards and a decent portfolio (at least nobody gave me bad feedback) and I honestly don't know what else to do. I totally understand your frustration and I guess you've also become scared of the next rejection just like me. I really can't help you with advice but wanted to let you know that you are not alone and I'm sure there's a happy place for us somewhere. Hope to meet you there very soon! Good luck! 🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻

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Thanks for your comment, and it means a lot to me for sharing your story. Likewise, I’m also in the same position as you, and I cannot say more than keep pushing your endeavor. I’m also scary to face the rejections over and over as in the past. Stay strong, my friend. As you said, you are not alone. I hope you find an agency that values you, and I also want to meet you there very soon. Good luck 🍺

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While my colleagues get the role with less experience than i have. I feel small and weak after numerous rejections. Many say that i lack of confidence, but if you don’t see the positive impacts on your life, confidence flies away. It’s a shame that i couldn’t get a job i want. But sometimes i’m angry. Doing part-time jobs sucks while chasing my career and seeing people with no to a year experience get the the job easily. I feel incompetence.. my degree doesn’t matter, itms just waste of money.

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look into the publisher side. I just went client side as a "digital sales strategy manager" at a magazine and it's good money, I am super happy. Sales might sound iffy, but I'm not a sales rep. What I'm doing now really isnt so different. Happy to chat more!!!

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Strategy here. If you want an impartial person to go to for advice/feedback feel free to DM

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You’re weak, you’re unskilled, you’re not confident. But is so most of people. When I was in college, people around me were landing these amazing jobs, the pressure got to me and it was ugly. I needed to let it all out, so I could reset. Give time, don’t give up and for everything that goes wrong, you use it to move forward. Unless, you get a knockout, the fight still on and you still have a chance to win. Keep on going! 😊

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Same. When I was in college, my friends land a job like a Thanos’s snap because their parent’s connections, which i didn’t had, and i was anxious about landing a job. Somehow I managed to land somewhere, but had to work part-time on the weekends, because i couldn’t afford living. Thank you for the comment. I know that I need to be optimistic and need to keep fighting the situation, but sometimes i’m really down and never opened my concern to anyone except here. Thank you and good luck on your career :)

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You said English isn’t your first language. Are you applying in an English speaking country where you need a visa?

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I don’t need a visa ✌️

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What city are you looking in?

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Have you tried Miami?

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