Finding a job can be difficult for just about anyone. When I first started university I thought all I had to worry about was maintaining a high GPA and all good things would follow (was I ever wrong). So now a recent graduate, I have the fun of experiencing job hunting in a very competitive time where baby boomers just won’t quit and graduates are running over each other for great opportunities.
I live in a small city and most of the buildings are very old, which means accessibility is hard to find. So that limits where I can apply. When you have a disability, there are things you look out for that nobody else has to worry about. For example, is the building accessible? Is there parking close by? A job description is never going to say, “Must be able to climb stairs” because it is just assumed everyone can. So you need to do your research and ask the hard questions. You have to be comfortable where you work and everyone needs to understand your limitations. If they don’t, that is their loss not yours.
In conclusion, I am still learning about what to do when looking for a job with a disability. I would say do not let the word “disability” stop you from taking an opportunity you know you can do. Nobody is perfect and for better or worse, I know LGMD is with me all the time. But so what? Use your strength to do bold things, and not suffer. If you want something in life, don’t be afraid.
My advice would be to never be defeated by anything or anyone. By now I have probably been rejected over a hundred times and if anything, I have grown and learned from it. Do not let the things you cannot do get in the way of things you can do. Always stay true to yourself and never let what somebody says distract you from your goals. I hear negative and false attacks all the time; someone is always telling me what I can’t do. But what they don’t realise is that it makes me fight that much harder. You will see that obstacles do not have half the strength that you have. Everything is possible for the individual who refuses to stop fighting, and honestly, strength has nothing to do with physical capacity. Take some risks, life is too short to play in the safe zone and never fear failure or rejection. You will be defined not by how you sit in comfort, but how you stand in times of challenge. Knowing is better than wondering and even the biggest failure is better than never trying. And what matters the most is that you never stop- no matter how slowly you are going.
I’ll leave you with one of my favourite quotes by Brian Tracy, “Between you and every goal that you wish to achieve, there is a series of obstacles and the bigger the goal, the bigger the obstacles. Your decision to be, have, and do something out of the ordinary entails facing difficulties and challenges that are out of the ordinary as well. Sometimes your greatest asset is simply your ability to stay with it longer than anyone else.”
Ivana was born in Sanski Most, Bosnia & Herzegovina but moved to Canada at the age of 3. She was diagnosed with LGMD a few years ago and it has forever changed her life. She is a regular contributor and her blogs will be everything she has learned along the way and what she continues to learn today.