While job searching I learned that women and racialized groups are less likely to apply for positions unless they meet every single qualification. The employer (the Kids Help Phone) encouraged candidates to apply even if their past experience doesn’t perfectly align with the job description.
“You may be just the right candidate for this or other roles we’re looking for,” they say.
This motivated me to apply for a strategic administrative position at a college—a huge stretch for me—and I’m interviewing for the job in three hours!
Personally, I’ve stretched myself in many ways (such as confronting bike thieves and reclaiming my bike) and shared stories of women stretching themselves (such as my friend Lynette converting a shuttle bus into a tiny home).
Professionally, however, I’m a scaredy cat.
Was! I mean I was a scaredy cat. Now I’m just excited, curious and eager to get the show on the road.
How to stretch without snapping
Whatever is meant to happen already exists. All my words at the job interview, my actions while transitioning into a new position and relationships with coworkers are already out there.
All I have to do is show up. And if I show up with curiosity, enthusiasm and awareness, I’ll participate in the exact way I’m meant to.
Whether or not I get the job is none of my business. My business is to stay centered, grounded and rooted in presence.
What are you stretching toward—or away from?
Take a deep breath. Relax into the stretch. Allow air into your lungs, blood into your veins, length into your muscles. Loosen your jaw and drop your shoulders.
Show up and be yourself.
If it’s meant to happen, it’ll happen. For better or worse, richer or poorer—like it or not—it’s on its way.
And you’ll enjoy the experience a whole lot more if you show up with curiosity, presence and open hands.