Thursday, August 16 , 2018, 3:44 pm | Fair 77º


Louise Palanker: How to Find a Job, Confronting Life After Death, and That First Crush

Question from Max V.

This might seem dumb, but how on earth do you get a job? I understand, you go to school you can get a degree, blah blah blah. But how do you find jobs and apply for them and get known? Like the literal process? It’s so stupid that they never teach this at school.


I don’t know your grade so I don’t know how much you should already know about getting a job, but I will give you my best advice. When you are 16, start applying for summer jobs. Between now and then babysit, mow lawns, sell lemonade. Work. Get used to how it feels to work and make your own money, because nothing really changes. It just evolves.

If you work, at least during the summer, through high school and college, then the idea of going out and getting a job within your chosen field will not seem so foreign. Once you graduate college, you will put together a résumé that shows you have worked at camps or restaurants or golf courses or whatever it is. This proves work ethic and it gives you potential reference letters for future employers.

Every person has a different career path story. If, for example, you want to become a teacher, you will do student teaching while you are in college. This gives you on-the-job experience and it introduces you to a network of teachers should you wish to apply for a job in that school district. After graduation, you can become a substitute teacher in more than one school district. If you are well liked, this often leads to job offers.

Should you choose a field that is challenging to enter, internships are the best way in. My motto is, “Give it away until somebody is willing to pay for it.” Internships opened the door to the entertainment industry for me.

An internship will offer you three layers of opportunity:

» You will observe the workplace in action and determine which jobs would be a good fit for you, thereby helping you choose a specific career path.

» You will learn by doing.

» You will make connections. The workplace is a family. If you are hard working and well liked, you will be hired ahead of a name on top of a résumé.

The Internet is a great way to display your work. Once you are old enough to be online, use it. If you want to make films, put your movies up on YouTube. If you are into fashion, show your designs on Tumblr. Create an online presence and résumé. When your name is Googled, the search results should be positive.

You can also use the Internet in your job hunt. Google firms that do what you want to do. Make lists. While you are still in college, start calling and asking if they have any openings, or internships.

If you land an excellent unpaid internship, talk to your parents about living at home for a year so that you can make the most of this opportunity.

When you enter the workplace, be the first one there and the last one to leave. Be proactive. Look around. What needs to get done? Get it done without always being asked to do it. Have a smile and an upbeat attitude for your co-workers. When you are asked a question by a superior, the answer is either, “Yes,” “I’m on it” or “Let me find out.”

There is nothing that is “Not your job,” unless it is illegal. Doing exactly what nobody else wants to do is exactly how you will earn respect and the opportunity to do exactly what you one day hope to do.

                                                                 •        •        •

Question from Tyler W.

I have gone into the depths of depression over a single question. What happens after death? I am Christian, but lately I dove into the world of science and it wrecked my faith, to say the least. I am too young to be thinking about this and I would rather have remained ignorant to it. I don’t need an answer just something to give me peace.


I do not know if this will give you peace but here is what I believe: No person on earth knows what happens after death. That is why we have faith. Faith is the concept of “knowing” with all of your heart, even without concrete evidence, so that you don’t have to be so scared.

Learning more about science need not negate your Christian beliefs. For example: The Bible says that God created the Heavens and the Earth in six days and on the seventh day he rested. It does not sound possible, does it? But before the existence of the Earth and our current concept of space and time, one day may have been a billion years.

Additionally, there are many religious people who believe that the Bible should not be interpreted literally but should serve as a guidebook full of morals and wisdom and lessons.

My faith tells me that no matter your religion, we are all a part of one human experience. We are here on earth to learn, to grow and to share together. The most powerful force known to us is love.

When we cross over, all of the mysteries of life become abundantly clear. We are not meant to fully know them while we are on our human journey. We are meant to connect with one another and to share knowledge, art, music, laughter, experiences and most of all, love. Know that your life has great meaning and that you are here for a purpose.

In a long, long time, when you do cross over, that meaning will become clear. Right now, just live.

                                                                 •        •        •

Question from Kendra B.

Today, I am worried about ... not ever getting my crush. It frightens me that he thinks I’m creepy. I’m really not on the inside with his group. How can I show him my feelings without him walking away? I feel left alone to rot with no one by my side. Should I change my personality or be myself? It’s just depressing.


You should be nothing more than your own true self. It’s called a crush for a reason. It crushes you. There is no way to make a person like you. All you can do is show him who you are. If you don’t know the kid, think of ways to get to know him better.

Everybody goes through these painful crushes. They make you feel like you will never love anybody the way you love this person. The truth is, you will. A crush is like sending your heart to the gym. It’s a workout and it builds you up for a lifetime of knowing what it means and how it feels to love. It sure as heck gets your attention.

And when you are in your 29th year of marriage and you have had it with that guy and the stupid sounds he makes when he cleans his ears and the piles of debris he leaves in his wake and the oil dripping onto your driveway from the old car he plans to restore, you will remember how much you once longed for him and smile because this is still him and you still do. That’s what real love is all about. Your crush is here to teach you.

                                                                 •        •        •

Got a question for Weezy? Email her at [email protected] and it may be answered in a subsequent column.

Louise Palanker is a co-founder of Premiere Radio Networks, the author of a semi-autobiographical coming-of-age novel called Journals, a comedian, a filmmaker (Family Band: The Cowsills Story is currently airing on Showtime Networks), a teacher and a mentor. She has a teen social network/IOS app and weekly video podcast called Our Place, built around a philosophy of cyber kindness. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are her own.

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