Breaking into Beauty (1)

What an eventful week I’ve had….

The company I trained with to complete my fast tracked Level 3 Beauty Therapy during the summer, have partnerships with reputable companies in order for their graduates to have guaranteed interviews, and gain their first work experience within the industry.

Well, Monday was the first “phone” interview I have been offered since I graduated in September this year.  This interview was so, how shall I say……. nice and light.  Yeah, that’s a nice way to put it.  So brief that I ended up asking her a lot more questions than she asked me.  When the call was coming to an end, I asked “what happens next?”  The assistant manager who conducted the interview said she had a couple more phone interviews and that she’ll email me the following day while completing her admin to let me know whether or not I’ll need to come in for another interview and trade test.

Ok so, I tried to stay positive, and not get paranoid because I believed that it wasn’t a genuine interview.  Maybe I wasn’t actually being paranoid because guess what?  I was unsuccessful.  Why am I not surprised?  Reasons given:

  • Currently looking for someone with more experience – interesting…. they read my CV and are aware that I am a recent graduate from The Training Room.
  • Looking for someone who is willing to work weekends – interesting…. Ok, so I stated during the interview that if I had a “choice” I wouldn’t work on a Sunday so I can somewhat accept that one.
  • Needed me to be flexible with shift work – interesting…. there was no issue mentioned on this side of the conversation with the shift patterns so I was confused.

It is their prerogative, yes it is, but the reasons given were questionable and question them I did.  Just a light questioning though.  I simply asked what their partnership with The Training Room was exactly if they were expecting more experience when they know what they were about and I’ve only recently graduated.  I also said that when a zero hour contract is being offered with flexible shifts that I can say by choice I wouldn’t work on Sundays.  I love my Sundays.  That is my favourite day of the week.  My recharge and refresh before the start of the next week ahead.  Anyway, I didn’t say all of that last bit about Sundays lol but I did tell her that I will be taking this up with The Training Room as I’m not happy with the service being provided.  I am paying for 3 years worth of careers support and it hasn’t been that fruitful so far.

I wrote that complaint, sent it in to them and got my response. In short, they said that if their partners were recruiting, I’d have an interview.  Interesting…. I sent a list of partners who were hiring and their closing dates last week to my careers officer.  So are they saying the vacancies advertised are false?  They also said that my careers officer is working hard to chase up the jobs I’ve applied to.  Interesting…. This is the same careers officer who told me to chase up the jobs she applied to on my behalf to show determination, so how and why is she chasing up mine?

They are still investigating apparently (eye roll).

Lesson learnt this week – No one cares more about you and your career than you do.

It’s a good thing that self employment is one of my aims or what would I do?  I definitely need to go harder with that.  I’ve got a plan that I need to make steps to execute.  I will still be seeking industry experience though.

Anyway, thanks for coming along this week, and if you have any interview or work experiences, feel free to share.  Until next time.

Forever learning and evolving,

Elisha xxx

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The Perfect 34th Birthday Gift…. A Blank Slate

What an interesting day!  This is the birthday I have been talking about for years!  It may seem random looking forward to my 34th but it is significant to me.

As a young single mum, I had people believing I wouldn’t do a good job or that my life would be over because of it, well I can stand up and say I’ve made it.  In the same way you look to your 16th birthday from 1st year at senior school, feeling it will take forever to get there, as an adult, 34 was it for me.  16 means somewhat “freedom”.  The first step to adulthood.  You can “legally” have sex.  You can “officially” get a job.  It’s a new lease of life and learning.

Well for me, when I was 18 I found that I was pregnant for my high school sweetheart and he was not happy about it.  He didn’t want me to have him but I weren’t killing my baby for no one!  So me and my son have been on an interesting journey together.  Now for my son reaching that 16 mark I earlier described is during my 34th year of life.

34 to me is like being 16 all over again… I have given my son practically all of me.  Having a small, to near enough non existent support system, jobs and careers I wanted to get into that I couldn’t pursue long term, if at all, because I didn’t want to be away from him too much at times when I feel I should have been home.  I have known what it was like to hardly see my mum because before she went through an illness during my younger years, she was always at one of her two jobs.  So I have made a lot of sacrifices for the love of my son and tried to be the best mum I could be with the time and resources I had and have.  No matter the circumstances .

Some of the things I can look forward to as individual are:

  • Pursuing roles I couldn’t do before without having to worry about childcare in any way shape or form
  • Going on short breaks in the middle of term time
  • Focusing on my health and fitness without having to worry too much about the attention it may bring because I know and love myself better than when I was 18.
  • Most importantly, enjoying my new stage of motherhood!!!!

My son fills my heart with so much joy.  Words really couldn’t describe the love I have for him.  I am looking forward to the stage we will step into together.  I will be able to support him through his adulthood in a way in which I wasn’t.  I have tried to ensure we have as open a relationship as possible so he can feel comfortable talking to me about anything with transparency on my part, as it’s good for any relationship.  So I am happy that there are still things we will be able to do together while helping him grow as an individual.  I want to see him win and hopefully we will win together.  He is my son and I can call him a friend because we have been through so much together.

So why the blank slate???? This is the first birthday I can remember having snow which I find to be symbolic.  Recently, considering I had everything figured out a couple months ago, there has been quite a few changes leaving me in a state of limbo:

  • I done well in the first year of my Spa Management degree and was excited for the second but I started back and they changed one the management modules to a practical.  That may not sound like a big thing to someone else but it really was because before we broke up they told us that the practical would be management within the spa setting.  Perfect!  Who would complain about that?  That’s what we’re working towards isn’t it?  But no, Advanced Consultations…. really???  I was not happy!  Manager … no!  Fancy therapist…. yes!
  • I am trying to change my course rather than waste time and MONEY on a degree I believe to not even guarantee a management role as I would still be working my way up regardless.  I’m currently just going back and forth with the uni trying to get a meeting to discuss my possible change to Hospitality Business Management.
  • The company I paid to do my Level 3 Beauty Therapy offer 3 years career support as they have partners with reputable companies within the industry with whom you are guaranteed interview and I haven’t had one yet! That is not down to a lack of trying with or  without them.  On my part, being newly qualified in any field it is difficult to get your first job without practical experience.  On their part, I feel that the way they’ve been advertising as if they train you up to work for their partners is possibly a con.
  • I’m definitely working towards self employment, whether part or full time.  I have just have a few things to take care of first such as getting my driving licence and money to get my kits together.
  • I booked a Floating Spa experience for my birthday today for the first time and had to reschedule due to the weather.

To bring it all home, this birthday is bittersweet.  Everything I have been working on externally has been thrown into temporary disarray.  On the other hand, I have 3 generations in my house today.  My mum who had me at 17 reminiscing about my birth, with me and my young man in training all going forward in this life together.  As long as home is good, then I’m good.

So I thank you all for coming through and feel free to comment and share your own experiences.

Forever learning and evolving,

Elisha xxx

An active summer in Brum is on the cards!!!

Induction complete!  I am officially a Project Brum Activator for the next 8 weeks!  Yayyyy!!!!

Meeting the team, getting to know our mentors and working with the other interns has been really good for the last two weeks but I never knew we could do so much in Birmingham to keep fit!

I mean I knew there were leisure/ wellbeing centres.  I knew there was an Be Active Plus scheme that if your health concerns were a part of the criteria then you could get a 12 weeks “prescription” to help you lose weight.  I knew everyone could get leisure cards, pay for gym memberships and have access to swimming pools.  But you know what?  Some of things I have been looking for have been right under my nose all the time and I had no idea!

Some of the services available that I just learned of are:

  • Run Birmingham –  You can start off with a Couch to 5K and more, even going on courses to start and lead your own running groups.  I always dreamed of taking part in Race for Life so this project got my attention.
  • Big Birmingham Bikes – Did you know that some of the wellbeing centres have bikes you can borrow and use for the day?  Did you know someone is able to teach you how to ride a bike if you don’t already know?  Did you know that you can complete road safety courses?
  • Active Parks – There are loads of activities and exercise classes being held in the parks for all ages like Zumba, Multi Sports, and Tai Chi.

Within the last two weeks, I have already applied and received Birmingham Wellbeing cards for my son, my mum and myself.  This card you scan on the activators tablets to register attendance at outdoor activities.  I can see that I am going to be enjoying this summer 🙂

Have you taken advantage of any of the services and activities mentioned?  Or are there any that you would like to try?

Look forward to sharing experiences.

Fun in the sun with Project Brum

Soooooo…… I went browsing through Birmingham City Council’s website a couple months ago looking to see what what they had to offer by way of activities.  I realised that most of the time I spent with my friends and family seemed to be centred around food in some way, shape or form. Not necessarily a bad thing but our fitness levels could definitely use some improvement lol!

So I started my search for activities, downloaded passport to leisure forms for my mum, my son and myself and came across an opportunity to do a summer internship with Project Brum.  There wasn’t much information about it to be honest but the gist of it was that we would be promoting health, fitness and wellbeing throughout the summer.  Just what I was looking for. What fun 🙂

I applied straightaway online emphasing in personal statement how health and fitness go hand in hand with the treatments offered in a spa environment.  I sent the application and didn’t think much of it until I was invited to an interview.  I have to say it was the most fun interview I’ve ever been too!

After the initial presentation as an introduction to Project Brum, we went out to a local park, got into teams and had to come up with activities to get children involved using the equipment given and then demonstrate it for the other teams.  I absolutely loved it!

We were given bean bags, a fold out ladder, plastic egg and spoons, hula hoops, skipping rope and a ball.  My first thought …… SPORTS DAY!!!!  It just took me right back to school days and we came up with a little assault course.  It was a really good day and got involved with all the team’s activities bar one.  I called my mum and sis after and was hoping that I got the opportunity to be a part of it because it sounded so good but I had to wait hear from them within two weeks.

Guess what?  I got it!  Yayyyy!!!!  10 weeks of fun in the sun with Project Brum!!!!

It’s interesting how people can have the same equipment and have completely different ideas on what to do with them.  What kind of activities would you have come up with?

 

 

It’s All About Me

Hi all and thank you for coming to join me lol!

I just thought I’d introduce myself to you all so you know a little bit about me and hopefully you come and join me on my journey through life:

I am a Spa Management student who has just completed her first year at university who desires to break into the industry and would also like to go mobile.  I have had loads of work experience in all different fields over the years including hospitality, health and social care,  and property.  I even launched a business a couple years ago prematurely if I’m being honest with you.  In hindsight, I wasn’t fully prepared so initially I went to university to study Business Enterprise but I found it wasn’t stimulating enough for me so I transferred my degree to the one I’m on now and absolutely love it!

During this summer, I am doing a paid 10 week internship with Project Brum via Birmingham City Council to help promote health, fitness and wellbeing around Birmingham.  This will be good for me as health and fitness complements the treatments that we provide within a spa environment.  I am also doing an intensive course for me to complete my Level 2 and Level 3 in Beauty Therapy via The Training Room alongside my internship separately for 12 weeks.  I invested in this in order to improve my employability.  Going into the industry as a “mature” non therapist is difficult as you are required to have a Level 3 even as a Spa Receptionist. So I thought this may help me find a job within a spa setting so I can see first hand how they are run, and also so I don’t lose my skills.

On a personal note, I’m a 33 year old mother to an amazing 14 year old son who was diagnosed with Aspergers in 2015 and we have been fighting with the school to have him supported how he should.  Horrible feeling when other people don’t love and care for your child like you do.  Single at present and very busy but I make time for whatever and whoever I feel is important.  Currently working on my fitness and enjoying my life as much as possible no matter what the circumstance.

Now you know me,  I want to get to know you too.  Feel free to share your stories with me and one another.  We can inspire each other.

Forever learning and evolving,

Elisha xxx