I'm job hunting in the hope of finding a new sense of purpose – Hayley Matthews
I was chatting to a friend recently who’s changing careers, and he was telling me about starting a user-experience design course which pricked my ears up.
He has friends who work in that field, are making good money and having a good life, and it’s motivated my job search. He also said a career change in his 40s is exciting and it got me thinking.
To be honest, writing isn’t my main job, I’m a full-time mum and my kids are my world. Yes, I love to write a weekly column for the Evening News, however, when the little one goes to nursery full-time in the next few weeks I’ll either become Monica from Friends, cleaning all day, or will sit watching TV, eating biscuits and drinking coffee, 9am-3pm.
But seriously, a purpose is key to a happy life, I’ve discovered. My kids are my purpose and always will be but I also need to be Hayley during the day. After all, it’s when we don’t have a purpose that many of us find the big black dog at the door.
So what do I do? What jobs do I apply for? “Oh, that’s that lassie off the telly, she’ll no make soup and sandwiches in a café!” Oh but yes I will! I’m clumsy, but I love being around people, chatting, hearing stories, fixing problems, working under massive pressure, being fast paced and finding easier ways to do things.
I’d thought about retraining as a psychologist and helping those with mental health struggles. However, I’ll be 50 by the time I finish a dissertation and finding a job in my 40s is hard enough.
A friend looked over my CV and said I’m a round peg trying to squeeze into a hexagon-shaped hole. I love that analogy! And I know what she means.
I’ve not always worked as a presenter. I’ve been an area manager, running three broadcast studios in Edinburgh, Cardiff and Glasgow for 10 years. I trained broadcasters, taught script-writing, taught how to present, completed studio budgets, worked with the CEO and directors on marketing and business development, recruited staff and was great at client relations too.
I even managed public-sector relations and was on first-name terms with many police chiefs, along with council and Scottish government staff.
Without sounding like Ron Burgundy, I was kind of a big deal in the information broadcast world, albeit in my late 20s. I'd loads of energy and would easily do a 60-hour week.
But I’ve also worked in the media for 20 years as a broadcaster, TV presenter and now a columnist. So what on Earth do I do now for a job? I’m genuinely at a loss.
It’s hardly your average CV but I want to be out speaking to people, doing something I’m good at, using my skills to better a workplace, charity or company when the kids are in school. Oh and I want to be earning some decent wonga again.
So if anyone is looking for a creative media expert who can present, write scripts, people-manage, talk for toffee, problem solve, who is funny, reliable, hard-working and always smells good, please apply within. Alternatively, if you’re stinking rich, have a massive disposable income, are bored then I’d gladly be your rent-a-friend during school hours Monday-Friday!