Unqualified

Two weeks ago, I was rejected for yet another job that I applied for. This time I actually made it to the interview process. Usually, I get no response. If I’m lucky enough to garner some kind of communication, it comes in the form of a generic automated email from their HR department thanking me for my application but regret to inform me that I have not been considered for the position. But this one was supposed to be different. I could feel it. I had years of experience doing the work they were looking for. I crafted an enticing cover letter to accompany my glowing resume. I didn’t stress over the interview. I kept calm the week prior. I visualized. I just let it flow. The day of the interview, I wore a nice tie and button up. I walked with confidence and I spoke in a tone to match it. I memorized the names of everyone on the hiring committee. I looked them in the eye. I thoughtfully answered all of their questions. But despite all this, I still received an email letting me know they decided to go with someone else they felt was more qualified. And just like that, I added another slip to the growing folder labeled rejection.

At first I went through the natural cycle of emotions after being on the receiving end of this bad news. I was angry. I was sad. I was disappointed. I felt like I’ll be in this dead end forever. Just another millennial, jaded from the realization that the world I believe we can live in, doesn’t necessarily match up to the world we are actually living in. Apparently my passion and idealism didn’t translate to being a desirable candidate.

How could this be? I obsess over social justice. I am passionate about helping transform our communities. I am constantly studying, brainstorming, analyzing, imagining, and critically thinking what we could do to actually experience some semblance of harmony in this society. I’ve dedicated my life to this cause. So how in the world am I not qualified for a position that is geared towards social justice and anti-oppression work? Can’t the hiring committee hear the sincerity in my voice? Don’t they feel my absolute devotion to this goal in the way that I look at them? What do they want? Experience? I have almost 7 years of it working in the field. Education? I’m getting my master’s degree as we speak. Strong communicator? I’ve been a professional public speaker for 8 years. What more could you want?! This mystery left me perplexed and confused.

Then the realization struck me. They were right. All of these employers/gate keepers/higher ups that passed up on me were absolutely correct in their decision. I’m not qualified. I’m really not. This was a liberating notion to consider. I just didn’t have it in me. It was that simple. I was not qualified to work for someone else and follow their vision. I wasn’t meant to have a boss, I was destined to become one myself. If I’m looking to actually make an impact in this world, I can no longer wait around and hope for someone else to recognize my potential. That’s no one’s responsibility but my own. I willingly accept this as my personal gospel.

Thus the inception of this website.

Here I’ll be sharing my thoughts on:

Politics.
Racism in America.
Hip-Hop.
Analyzing History.
Leadership Skills.
Public Speaking Tips.
Social Justice.
Changing the world.
Personal transformation.
Coming of age as a millennial during the chaos in this world.

I’ll share my poetry. I’ll post my speeches.

I look forward to going on this journey with you.

Peace,

John Eklof

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