i can't cut it as a professional programmer. can someone help me find an occupation?
You could be condescending and tell me that the problem is the economy or you could attempt to understand my situation and perhaps realize that my problem is not only the economy.
Long story short, I graduated with a bachelor's in math more than 5 years ago. straight out of college I couldn't find a permanent a job (supposedly because I had no work or internship experience) and did a string of temp jobs until I finally found a below-average paying full time job at a below-average company. nothing wrong with below-average salaries and below-average companies, but having been all my life an above-average student it was not possible for me not feel like I had failed. and it wasn't even the below-average salary or the company that I worked for that depressed me, it was the nature of the job I was doing. Never in my life had I felt so much anxiety and depression on a daily basis. The job, by the way, was a job with computers, but not 'fun', or 'cool', or 'intellectually rewarding' like the computer science courses I took in school. I didn't feel like I was working with computer programs. I felt like I was just starring at lines and lines and lines of meaningless code.
again, long story short, I tortured myself at that job for more than 3 years. i didn't quit because i couldn't find another relevant job (the experience I acquired was worthless, since all this technology I was working with was proprietary) and because I believed that 'sucking it up' and 'working hard' was necessary in order to get the type of job that I wanted. so i endured torture until one day my boss felt sorry for me and fired me.
fast forward a year and i still can't find a job (since the experience I have is irrelevant and since employers obviously would feel uncomfortable hiring a person who has been unemployed for so long and who was mysteriously 'let go' due to reasons other than a mass layoff. and also the fact that the economy 'sucks')
in spite of all the misery i endured both employed and unemployed I was fortunate enough to receive a grant to go back to school for a few months and acquire knowledge of widely used technologies. the idea is to get a certificate at the end of the training course. but i've taken sample exams and it's clear that I know nothing. i probably won't even bother taking the exam because it's obvious that I won't pass it. it's not only that the training course did not prepare me properly for the exam. it's also that I no longer care about the stupid certification. even if I kill myself studying and I somehow manage to fill my brain with encyclopedic knowlege of this technology, then what? i've already been warned that just the certification won't get me a job. i still need to show initiative and do sample work and then show that work the next time i interview. and then even fi I get the certification and do the sample work there is no guarnatee I will get hired. employers can still feel hesitant to hire a person who has been unemployed for so long. or i will interview for a position and do well at the interview but fail to charm one person in human resources. maybe i couldn't explain something properly, failed to show enough passion, failed to show direction, or answered a question more honestly than I was supposed to. or maybe they'll just call my previous employer and not hear what they wanted to hear.
in short - i no longer care. even though i enjoyed doing math in high school and college and did well academically, and even though I enjoyed learning C++, java, VB, in college, and again, obtained straight As, I think it's clear that I'm kidding myself and that I'm trying to ignore the fact that professional programming lacks the quality that, at least for me, made programming enjoyable in school.
i don't need to be told that I am depressed and that i need help. i already followed the advice wise people gave me and got myself medicated. my psychiatrist actually denies that I am depressed and he says that he doesn't care if people on the internet disagree with his assessment (it's not uncommon for laypeople on the internet to diagnose me with depression). According to my psychiatrist I am discouraged. Depressed or not, I think it's true that I am discouraged.
As I have explained here, I simply don't care anyone. It's taken me many years to see this but I think it's clear that I made the mistake of thinking that just because I liked the stuff that I was doing in school I was going to enjoy doing jobs that require people to have, amongst many other things, the knowledge that is acquired in school. So I chose the wrong career path. and yeah I know that work is work and that work is not supposed to be fun but if my particular line of work is going to make my life miserable and make me with I was dead I think I might as well find another way to earn a living.
So instead of kidding myself and pretending that things would have been better for me if only I had had the job that I wanted to have (a job that probably doesn't exist) can someone help me figure out a way to get a rewarding job? By rewarding I don't mean lots of money or prestige. I don't have a family and I don't have a social life so I don't have to worry about feeding anyone or keeping up with anyone. I just want a job that's less demanding and stressful than a programming position and hopefully more stimulating than stocking shelves at a supermarket.
can someone give me some ideas? No, I am not going to teach. Yeah, I know that many school districts will hire almost any loser to work as a teacher, but I am not interested in working with kids nor do I think I have the emotional strength to take so much crap on a daily basis nor is explaining my thoughts something that comes easily to me. Driving a truck? Well. Maybe. But can I do bit better than driving a truck? how about working at a national park? that's probably a job that I could do, but those jobs are very competitive and even PhDs compete for those jobs. how about the armed forces? I'm in my late 20s and in the best shape of my life. maybe some branch of the military will take me if I successfully conceal my medical conditions from them. Post office? How about post office jobs? or how about a job with computers but doing something that at least vaguely resembles what I was doing at school? like some job making pie charts using excel or creating forms with database data using access? Do those jobs exist? someone please give me suggestions. i wish I could self-employ but unfortunately I don't have anything to sell or any service to render. any hints would be appreciated