Life is replete with uncertainties. Sometimes, despite planning in advance for your future, and working diligently towards your goal, things don’t work in your favour. You may not get that sought-after job, or end up with a job that is not to your liking. Even worse, you may not land a job at all. While it is undoubtedly unsatisfactory and disheartening, it is extremely important for you to not give up!

As Chris Hardwick aptly puts it:

No human ever became interesting by not failing. The more you fail and recover and improve, the better you are as a person. Ever met someone who’s always had everything work out for them with zero struggle? They usually have the depth of a puddle. Or they don’t exist.

So all you have to do is figure out an alternative and make the best of the current situation. There is no dearth of options that you can’t successfully explore. We have some ideas as to what you could do if you don’t get your desired job or not get a job at all.

1. Freelance

Not getting a job is frightening. It is the most important option being eliminated from your list of options. And now that you are faced with uncertainties again, you can try freelancing for a while. Freelancing has a number of advantages. It gives you the experience to help you get a job. You get the taste of a certain job before committing to it. It helps you make the right choice now that you know whether the work is right for you or not. Apart from being an alternate source of income, freelancing is perfect while you’re looking for something permanent.

2. Travel

In the words of eminent writer Robert Louis Stevenson:

For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.

If you think you need to be rich in order to travel, you are mistaken. You can plan a trip abroad or go backpacking across India. All you need is the desire to travel. While it may seem like an unlikely option, traveling may be the best solution to your problems. Apart from making you experience new places, cultures, cuisines and people, traveling can enable you to acquire various soft skills like communication skills, networking, time management, teamwork skills that will, in turn, strengthen your personality. Travel is a great teacher and when you’re traveling you are not only exploring various options but also becoming a better leader in the process. Don’t treat traveling as an extended vacation. Research and plan your trip, for this is not about relaxing. This is about exploring your options, building experience and finding a direction.

3. Pursue higher education

Pursuing a Master’s degree or considering a fellowship after graduation is interesting, especially if you are academically inclined or have a project/subject in mind that interests you and could research further. Further study can enable you to gain specialist skills that you currently lack which can later help you in your career. You will be armed with new and specialized information and you can tailor your study as you see fit. Make sure you research your course content well before applying. Opt for a course that will help you in the future.

4. Become an entrepreneur

What is better than being your own master? Entrepreneurship has become popular with young people who are willing to take risks. If you have an idea that you think will sell, then give it a shot. Be relentless about gaining business, know your competitors and build a huge network. If you are passionate, ready to take the road less traveled, willing to work hard, entrepreneurship might be perfect for you.

5. Look for jobs

This is obvious and hence often ignored! Just because you have been rejected in a few jobs you interviewed at doesn’t mean you stop looking. This applies to both those who are unemployed and those who are dissatisfied with their current jobs. If you are out of a job, start hunting for one. Register yourself on job portals and be on a constant lookout for vacancies. Be active on social media platforms. Work diligently on your resume and keep updating it. If you have a job with which you are not happy, start looking for alternatives. You don’t have to be stuck in a place where you’re unhappy. While you’re working you are networking with contacts from your industry who can inform you about jobs of which you may not be aware of. Take advantage of the situation and apply for better jobs. Today, you have options to work in a big company as well as for startups. Both have their own pros and cons!

6. Explore your hobbies and interests

This is a good time to explore your hobbies and interests because by doing so you will be exploring what really interests you and what really makes you forget time! Learn a new language or enrol for a course that interests you. There are a plethora of certificate courses and diplomas (online & offline) available that may help you. They can be technical courses, academic courses or vocational ones. Maybe you can learn a new programming language, musical instrument, a dance form or a form of martial arts. Anything that you feel makes you happy and thoroughly enjoy doing, go for it. People who already have commitment find it really hard to give time to their hobby. Now, you have time and hence you should make the most of it.

7. Internship

Internships are not only valuable for students; they are also great learning tools for people looking out for jobs. A good internship program can help you to understand a particular industry, company and help you evaluate your potential as a full-time employee. Also, if you do well in an internship there are chances for you to be absorbed into the company.

8. Volunteer or work for an NGO

If you care about a particular cause, why not work on it? Volunteering and working for non-profit organizations, will not only give you satisfaction, but also show you a completely new side of life you were unaware of!

9. Start a blog

Blogging has become a popular tool for showcasing your skill sets and for businesses on an online platform. If you are interested in certain subjects, you can start penning down your thoughts and opinions. The biggest advantage of a blog is you can get as creative as you want, gathering a lot of useful information in the process.

So don’t waste time worrying about what didn’t happen. Start considering other options and grabbing new opportunities. Like Benjamin Disraeli says:

The secret of success in life is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes.

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