Support Site for The Unemployed & Underemployed
Wednesday January 23rd 2019

Long Term Unemployed Graduate Seeking Career Coaching

Hi Gilbert,

Thank you for your reply.

Yes, I’m currently unemployed and would like to seek coaching assistance to re-enter the workforce soon.

I don’t want to sound cumbersome or whining by loading you with paragraphs of self-pity and woeful plight of myself. Hence I have just included a brief introduction and my resume for your reference. Hopefully we can work out something together from here.

I am a  female site reader in my late twenties. I  worked and at the same time pursued my degree (in the evenings) before leaving the workforce in October 2008.

After the completion of my degree, I went away for a 2-month break  and returned to Singapore in December 2008. What was initially intended to be a short break turned out, unexpectedly and dreadfully, to be an awfully long  one.

I started job searching in the beginning of 2009 but was hit by the bad economic situation. Went to several interviews but weren’t fruitful. Months passed, self confidence dipped and depression started to sink in. Halted job search in the 3rd quarter of 2009, and occupied myself with both my friend’s and my own wedding preparations and new home renovation. ¬†It was a good temporary break to say the least.

I resumed my job search again in the beginning of this month. This time around, I have assessed my needs and values and realised I did not enjoy being in an office cubicle all day long without much human interaction (as in my previous jobs).

Thus,  it is likely I may have to do a career switch. As with many long-term unemployed, I too harbour self doubts about my abilities especially on how to match what I can offer (in resume/interviews) to meet those needs of the employers.

However,  I have not told anyone  about my unemployed status as I felt ashamed and had bad experiences of friends dispensing awkward solutions (eg. taxi-driver, any position in civil service = recession-proof, iron rice bowl among others).

I understand career coaches are facilitators, listening ears; not magicians who can miraculously get people out of unemployment situation overnight.

But despite reading many self-help and career assessment books, I am still lost and need a listening ear and some advice.




Hi Sarah

Thanks for your resume and self intro.

 Let me check with the career coach and come back to you soon on her schedule.

¬†Its true that unemployment can be devastating and a dampener on one’s self esteem.

 As unemployment  has no deadline one can only pray and hope that we will be able to get a job soon. The uncertainty however can often be frustrating.

 Having been through 18 months of unemployment, I felt that though that period was both tough and hard, it did alot of good for my adversity quotient. Of course, I will never want to go through that period again ever!

¬†I felt tougher inside now and could tell that my life’s goals have changed. Moreover, I learned who my true friends are and you will be very surprised‚Ķ

 I no longer care so much on making  money any more (though its important for survival) and focus alot on helping others and on building relationships

¬†I hope that you will learn from life’s hard lessons and not waste this important phase of your life. Its a¬†huge learning curve for sure.

¬†Moreover, if one is to just embrace life for it’s blessings alone we will not really appreciate the true meaning of life.¬† Try also to find a meaning for your suffering.

 It is when we have darkness and failures along the way that we learn how to better appreciate the finer things in life.

 Hope this has helps you and le me get back to you on the career coach availaibility.

 I also request your permission to post this mail on my site if possible.

 I will leave out your name of course to protect your identity.

 Take care and never give up,. We are here for you.



 PS: We have assigned volunteer  career coach Helen to assist Sarah РGilbert.

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7 Responses to “Long Term Unemployed Graduate Seeking Career Coaching”

  1. pk says:

    Dear Mr Gilbert,

    I have written this piece on 14 Apr 10; its fairly reflective of the unemployed or the underployed.. a lighter moment.

    Unwillingly Unemployed Ťč¶šł≠ŚĀöšĻź

    I Am Lost…

    I have no money; I have no direction.
    My career ended years ago.
    I belonged to the promising generation and I am a digit in the graduate unemployment

    When you are 35 – 45 years old and you loss your job, whatever your qualifications and positions, when the job disappears or a younger and cheaper substitute comes along you can kiss your job goodbye permanently.

    With three mouths to feed, an apartment to pay and no income, I belong to the lost generation.

    Not that I have not tried neither did I bury my head in the sand. I searched. I seeked help and referals
    I comb the job market for an equivalent but alas… I am either too qualified, too old or not relevant.

    I am a fighter like the Desert Rats; the only thing I bury is my dignity, pride and sorrows; I am the forgotten citizen.

    What can I do or what do I need to do? What does the future hold? I am staring blankly into the future!Tomorrow is bleak; it is blank.

    I need not be retrained to clean tables, make rooms nor sweep the roads. I need not wait at tables, take orders nor keep the stores. Not that it is demeaning but if these were my inspirations, I do not need a Uni-degree.
    I am a resource and an economic waste in my Motherland; chasing the elusive job.

    I slip through the cracks in Society. There is no safety net.
    For all that had been said and assured, there were only words filled with empty promises.

    The dream home, the retirement, the laughters and warmth, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
    This is a pipe dream

    I need not show nor do I need to tell. I will come back with a vengence when I hit the wall. Either we prosper together or you can selfishly milk every drop of my blood.

    When doomsday come, you will be my equal


  2. [...] PS: This comment appeared in the article: Long term unemployed graduate seeking career coaching [...]

  3. octavia says:

    I have been unemployed since april 2008. I had taken a break to take care of my health conditions. My job history has not been good too, as I used to work in my previous jobs and did not stay long enough. Most of my job stints were between a few months to 1.5 years. As a result, after I took a break to recuperate in April 2008, and tried to resume my job search in dec 2008, I met with many difficulties. Now, it’s almost 3 years since I have been unemployed. I keep myself busy by going to the library, helping out family members at home by running errands, and selling second hand items online, but my savings is running out and I am very demoralised. I have a degree from a local university and graduated more than 10 years ago. I don’t know what I am supposed to do now.

  4. Gilbert Goh says:

    Hi Octavia,

    Sorry to hear about your prolonged unemployment state.

    Can you email me directly so that I can understand your situation more and perhaps arrange my volunteer career coach to see you?

    Its tough out there for many jobless PMETs but do try to keep the chin up.

    I also saw that you have kept yourself busy by going to the library and helped your family to run errands. Its good to stay active and positive despite the current situation.

    Please email me directly at if possible so that I can better assist you.

    Take care and always stay positive.

    • octavia says:

      Do people with severe speech problems have any chance in the working world nowadays? I am already in mid thirties and am also very introvert….

      anyway, thanks for your encouragement. i’ll see what i can do….

  5. sp tan says:

    To PK/Octavia
    Since both of you hv uni-degree, you may like to consider teaching or giving private tution. One of my friend was an engineer. She was in her 40s when retrenched. Now she seems to be doing quite well by giving private tution to secondary school students. You may like to try.

  6. Wonderful, totally agree with you

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