That is the verb I was looking for.
It takes work and sometimes a lot of persistence, good sense and even faith to reach your career goal. Like me, many of you may have been encumbered by circumstances that you felt you had no control over. You may have been coaxed into an early marriage which you did not want or was too young to appreciate anyway. You may have been born into dire poverty which saw your loving parents having to dig deep into their pockets just to put one frugal meal on the table. Mainly, you may have believed that whether it was physical, spiritual or mental, you did not have the range of abilities and personality traits to succeed in your chose career or dream job.
Dream boat Mexican-American actor, Benicio del Toro, may have been a lot more fortunate than most of his peers. After all, his father wanted to put his handsome son through law school and make something of himself. Not because he felt obligated but because he could. Secretly, all Benicio wanted to do was become an accomplished actor. Living in his father’s shadow, this was never going to be easy. But he did it, didn’t he. And I somehow believe that his father, set in his old ways, proudly respects his son a lot more than he would have believed.
I can relate to the circumstances that women find themselves in. I can also relate to the handsome actor. When I was a child, like Malala, all I ever wanted to become was a school teacher, teaching my favorite subject, English literature, and putting other girls through their paces in the school gym. I barely finished high school and I never went to college. Lucky for me, I did spend a number of years working in at least three different jobs. Acceptance began to creep in once more, and the dream died.
Years later, that same dream returned, although this time told and interpreted through the eyes of a grown woman. Still working, I spent the next few years studying towards my college degree. I also paid the fees in full too. I owe nothing and no-one. I do owe it all to myself in believing that I could do it. But the hard work still lies ahead. I’ve sent through resume after resume with no end in sight to the few rejections I would receive occasionally. For the rest of the time, there was no acknowledgement of my qualifications, talent and life’s experience.
It is nothing like the old days. The nature of job-seeking seems to change every year. In spite of what you may be thinking, you are forced to re-invent the wheel. My wise father, always sensible in his approach to life, asked me whether the job-hunting process would be a lot more streamlined for me now that I have been through the mill. Politely, I replied that it is not so simple. Even when it is remotely related to what you want to do, each job or position has its own unique set of characteristics and no one company thinks alike.
You have to be prepared to sell yourself hard and reword every thought and suggestion as to why you are the best person for that job.