My life after college.. should I be depressed?

Hello. So I will be sharing what I have been doing since graduating college and some of my plans for the future and I would like to get some advice on how to deal with my depression. So I am 22 years old from the U.S, graduated from college with a bachelors degree in geography(3.615 GPA) in January 2016. Its almost one year since I graduated but I have yet to find a stable job. Luckily I still live with my dad and he is able to support me. So in short, I have 1 part time job experience(2.5 years) and 2 internship experiences but still struggling to find a job.

So originally I wanted to work in the environmental management career field(why I took geography as my major as there are many environmental studies involved) because I've always loved nature and wanted to help contribute the world by managing the environment. I did a relevant 3 month internship over the summer of 2015. But this didn't seem to help me get a job at all. I've applied to at least 100 companies related to environmental management/conservation but not one even called for an interview. Then I started applying to companies that were completely unrelated to what I studied in college. One company called for an interview and I got hired on the spot. This was 2 weeks before I graduated too. It was an administrative/sales type job where you work in the office the whole day. Now I actually hate these office type jobs as I am an outdoor person and love to work outside but I had no choice to take this job because there were no other jobs that would consider me. But I only lasted a month here. I could not deal with the stress from my bully boss and sitting in front of a computer the whole entire day. It just wasn't for me.

So having no luck with environmental management jobs nor an office related job, I decided to look more beyond in the environmental field and found horticulture(gardening/plant science) as one potential option. So I became interested in that and started researching a lot about it. I couldn't believe it. This was something exactly what I wanted to do. Which made me think why I never considered horticulture before as my career path. So I somehow was hired at a botanical garden as a horticultural intern(paid). I believe the reason why they wanted to hire me was because of its relevancy with my previous internship I took in 2015 and I looked and sounded very passionate in the interview. I was extremely happy they were able to give me a chance to work in the horticultural field. So this internship started in April 2016 and it just ended last week. Which is why I am starting to become depressed because I currently have no job now. Of course I am vigorously searching for one now. However, good news is that I found what I wanted to do in my career and know what I want to pursue. After completing this internship, I gained some skills on plant management+techniques and I also developed a deep passion and love for plants so I decided to go after a career based on that. So starting from January I am scheduled to take some courses on horticulture at a very well known horticultural school. Once I complete all 9 of the courses, I will be entitled a horticultural certificate. I hope this helps me get a full time horticultural job. After receiving the certificate I will aim to become a professional horticulturist. How I will do that? There is an exam for that and you need to pass. Its like how you take an exam for CPA. If I pass this I will receive the title of a professional horticulturist. But anyway, next spring I plan on working at a plant nursery part-time while I attend the school to gain some more experience in horticulture. Ultimately, I want to either open up my own nursery business or start a business from home growing plants and selling them. So basically, I want to make a living out of growing plants and selling them.

So theres my story.. but I'm just feeling so down and depressed because I should have started working as a full timer right after graduating but its taking so much time to achieve it. I see many other people my age already working full time and it makes me feel like I'm the only loser with no job. I feel like I'm going to be poor forever and not be able to raise a family and everything... And I don't even have a part time job right now, although I am searching and applying to bunch of places. I do have anxiety and depression and taking zoloft 50mg right now but the depression seems to be persisting. Should I be depressed about this? Or am I overthinking too much just because of a job that I haven't found yet?

8 Replies

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  • Hi,

    I started to read this post and felt like it was familiar. You told us about your journey a couple of months back.

    I didn't get the job I wanted straight out of university. I worked in a coffee shop. I didn't love it, but it meant that I could pay my own way and go on holidays. I wasn't prepared to move to London to get a job.

    I then got another job, working for a bank. I decided to put my all into it. It wasn't my dream job, but hey, it meant I could start saving to buy a house, and meant that I could rent a place with my husband (who at the time was my boyfriend).

    I worked really hard, and got a promotion. The people I worked with made the job. I didn't enjoy the job itself. I took the promotion because it meant I could save for my wedding.

    When I volunteered to be made redundant, I thought, finally, I'll train to do what everyone says I'm good at, teaching. So I trained, and I became one, and I started thinking about killing myself every day.

    Fast forward to my recovery. I'm working in a call centre, part time by choice, and am happy. I have made wonderful friends, have zero stress, can switch off the second that I finish my shift.

    My point is that life is about the journey, not the destination. You can't always get what you want. There is what you want, and there is what you need. You're lucky that you can hold out for what you want, but the reality is that very few people have their dream job, or even know what their dream job is.

    I found what I thought was my dream job, and it nearly killed me. You are lucky that you enjoy yours. Ask others on this site, some of them might tell you different, and tell you how to achieve your dream job.

    I think you are being too hard on yourself in some ways.

    Lori

    Xxx

  • Well no one hires me period. Whether its a part-time job or any job that even bums can do. I don't know why. Maybe because I'm Asian they're being discriminate? If so fuck them. In fact, I just went out looking for jobs right now. No one wants me. I've done enough of online applications and that doesn't work whatsoever so I started going out physically asking all the managers if they're hiring. Even if I have something I want to do theres no point if I don't get a job on it. Thanks for helping me out though, I just can't get this frustration out of my head.

  • Hi I agree with Lori, you are still so young don't stress, enjoy the journey,

  • It sounds like you are making good progress and on target to build on things for your chosen career.

    Volunteering is always good if you are without a job, while doing your courses. There is probably also scope for temporary gardening work with friends and neighbours?

    I note you have depression and so will tend to look on the negative side of things.

    Depression is like velcro for negative thoughts - but they lie

  • Well volunteering won't get me any money... and I need income so I can start paying off bills. My dad is in a very stressful situation right now financially and I need to start helping him.

  • But it's still worth doing if you don't have a paid job and you may be able to work in prestigious locations with grand gardens.

    It was just a thought

  • You seem to be jumping about away from what you studied for. Now you have found a pathway you enjoy and will need to retrain so you can follow an alternative route, this will take you time, so do you now feel your first career outlook is now dead and buried.

    Could above be what is depressing you now, the fact of additional retraining and time lost over your post further education. I would be fed up learning another trade and starting again as you watch those around you working and succeeding at their chosen jobs. Are you pushing for something different and then have problems not been able to get on the promotion ladder when you are still young, your friends have managed getting a start on those jobs that will start to pay more money.

    Would you not be better sticking to your original subjects, if need be work in the travel industry while you look for a job in your chosen field, at least you could keep your eyes open as you have now Graduated with Masters, remember this was not the case when you applied for various jobs in your field.

    Personally I am a firm believer in if I studied and found that the wrong subject had been taken to move on. I persisted and spent my life doing something I should not be doing. I in fact restudied and for a different Qualification and even when in my early twenties 21 it was to late to start a new course in education and ended up in an occupation that was not suited to me. So you need to be careful that you do not block yourself from your chosen pathway. If you start Horticulture you would start studying and your early working life would be taken up with further studies from your original subject. No wonder you are depressed ?.

    You need to consider and be careful you do not alienate yourself from your post qualification

    B.

  • I don't think you should feel depressed about just finding your passion now! I'm 53 and I'm still not sure what I want to be "when I grow up" so use thst as your comparison. I know of many people with master degrees and if they are lucky enough to have jobs, they are in mimimum wage, unrelated fields, so scratch that guilt off your list as well! I think it is FANTASTIC that you know what you want to do, and you have a plan! Rejoice and be glad! You are on a. Very good path my friend and you should feel proud of yourself! I am. 🤗🤗🤗

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