By Deb Bryan
The first “lighthouses” were actually nothing more than strategically placed bonfires on the tops of hills to guide mariners into a harbor. The fires served to show sailors where the port was located, but they did little to help them avert crashing into rocks. This was especially problematic in the ancient city of Alexandria, which had a thriving port but also a rocky island off the coast named Pharos. To solve the problem, the residents built a 400-foot lighthouse on the island, which for centuries was among the tallest man-made structures on earth. The fires built on the top of this massive structure could be seen for miles out to sea, and it served to not only protect ships and save lives but also promoted trade. Sound vaguely like the job search?This lighthouse picture has a romantic touch, don’t you think? It almost looks like scrimshaw with its grey/brown background, dark emotional clouds and tall ship fighting the waves. Now, imagine you are the captain responsible for a crew; fighting your way from the rocks and through the waves threatening to dash everyone and their dreams for the future. In the job search, this is reality.
The job search contains not only experienced sailors looking for safe harbors to land but also the novice, just starting to explore their new horizons. The seasoned navigators have charted points of light which help to keep their ships seaworthy and away from the rocks. Newly launched captains still-wet-behind-the-ears, have been known to wreck their vessels through taking too much on-board or listening to scuttlebutt, thus steering themselves into dangerous waters.
In my years of job search I have had lighthouses: counselors, coaches, friends and family, and linked-in advisors. I have learned much through their messages steering me through rough water. Always, I have been reminded to pass on the light I have received. Gratefully, those messages have been passed by networking which has taken the forms of discussion over coffee, meetings, volunteering, and now by writing.
How about you? Surely, you haven’t done it alone. Who has spread some light on your situation and kept you afloat? Pay the gratitude forward by networking. Someone out there really needs you to shine.
Deb Bryan has worked in the Pharmaceutical Industry for over 20 years. She is passionate about writing and Toastmasters International.
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