Changing myself to suit others — Scope | Disability forum
If we become concerned about you or anyone else while using one of our services, we will act in line with our safeguarding policy and procedures. This may involve sharing this information with relevant authorities to ensure we comply with our policies and legal obligations.

Find out how to let us know if you're concerned about another member's safety.
Please read our updated community house rules and community guidelines.

Changing myself to suit others

Gnu89
Gnu89 Community member Posts: 251 Pioneering
edited September 2023 in Work and employment
I have looked back on all the job applications and interviews I failed and I think the problem is me.  I have always been told to "just be myself" but "myself" is awkward, unattractive and uninteresting.

I am thinking I should "fake it till I make it' instead to make me seem more attractive and employable, even if it compromises my sense of self, like changing my hobbies, being interested in things other people like and changing my appearance to look more normal.

What do you think?

Comments

  • Albus_Scope
    Albus_Scope Posts: 2,883 Scope online community team
    Heya @Gnu89 You should never see unsuccessful interviews as you failing them.  You didn't fail anything, you just weren't exactly what the company wanted.  It's taken me a long time to realise this, but once I did, it made everything a load easier. And I'm saying that as someone who gets a bit of the old RSD fairly often. 

    Masking can be *so* exhausting, so I'm personally a fan of people just being themselves.  The right employer could be just around that corner. :) 
    Albus (he/him)

    Online Community Coordinator @ Scope

    Concerned about another member's safety or wellbeing? Flag your concerns with us.
    Want to give us feedback? Complete our feedback form now.
    Opinions expressed are solely my own.
    Neurodivergent.
  • Hannah_Scope
    Hannah_Scope Posts: 7,267 Disability Gamechanger
    I've popped an email over to you @Gnu89 :) 
    Hannah - She / Her

    Online Community Coordinator @ Scope

    Concerned about another member's safety or wellbeing? Flag your concerns with us.
    Want to give us feedback? Complete our feedback form now.
  • Gnu89
    Gnu89 Community member Posts: 251 Pioneering
    @Hannah_Scope I've read your email, I don't mean to worry anyone but I have had a lot of rubbish experiences the last couple of years.  My self confidence is at an all time low.  I live in Wales and I was briefly on a programme sponsored by Scope and run by Whitehead Ross in Swansea early this year.  It didn't work out and my mental health spiralled which led to private counselling and medication.

    I only ask about changing myself as only certain types of people seem to succeed and get by in life.  I know it sounds ableist but my condition seems to be a constant barrier.

    I have also been with Maximus in the past but they were horrible and ignorant about neurodiverse conditions and their challenges, where I had to compromise and adjust until I had enough and left them.
  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Community member Posts: 2,555 Disability Gamechanger
    Speaking as someone who's creepy, weird and boring...I get fed up of the phrase 'just be yourself'.  That only applies to people who have socially acceptable quirks.  Personally, I've never got anywhere by being myself.

    Getting a job is like playing a game, you have to apply certain tactics to win.

    That can include altering your appearance or feigning confidence to match the type of job you're going for. 

    It can also include 'toning down' aspects of your personality that might be undesirable for that particular role.  Though pretending to like more normal hobbies is probably not recommended.  You'll quickly get found out when you can't name your favourite football team or the latest Love Island contestants...  :#
  • Gnu89
    Gnu89 Community member Posts: 251 Pioneering
    @OverlyAnxious You have a point.  I can't stand football or reality TV.  But a liking for Bandai model kits, action RPG games, Gundam anime and unusual tastes in music aren't exactly mainstream traits.  Also the paradox of relevant experience.  To have experience, I had to have done it in the first place, it's kind of like the chicken and egg paradox.
  • Albus_Scope
    Albus_Scope Posts: 2,883 Scope online community team
    @Gnu89 I'd say they may not be totally mainstream, but they're certainly popular!  I'm saying that whilst being surrounded by Space marines and Diablo figures. 

    Whenever anyone says "Just be yourself" my usual answer is "Straight away? No that's a terrible idea"  So I just tone things down a little bit, be a bit more businesslike and just keep plugging away. 

      I was once turned down for a job I went through 4 hours of interviews for. Their reason was I made a joke, so obviously wouldn't take the role seriously.  That utterly destroyed my confidence and I really wanted to give up.  But the next interview landed me an amazing job. :) 
    Albus (he/him)

    Online Community Coordinator @ Scope

    Concerned about another member's safety or wellbeing? Flag your concerns with us.
    Want to give us feedback? Complete our feedback form now.
    Opinions expressed are solely my own.
    Neurodivergent.
  • WhatThe
    WhatThe Community member, Scope Member Posts: 888 Pioneering

    Me again..

    What's clear is that you have an eye for detail and that's one of the innate strengths I refer to in your other thread. Don't underestimate this or any other quality which comes naturally to you. Attention to detail is required for creative work, computer coding and customer service which span all sorts of industries and could be done from a safe distance. Eliminating occupations through trial and error (incl volunteering) is probably more common these days than following a clear career path. 

    Identifying your 'transferable skills' for work includes any practical skill (making or fixing things/cooking/driving/financial numeracy) your excellent use of the English language, your sensitivity to others, your resilience and your determination to learn and improve yourself.


  • WhatThe
    WhatThe Community member, Scope Member Posts: 888 Pioneering

    Gnu,

    I want to add that emotional intelligence in men is more rare than perhaps you realise. 
    It's certainly an asset in a close relationship.

    No two interviews are alike in my experience and only a good employer knows how to put somebody at ease after allowing for nerves. Tending or nurturing roles (human, animal, plant, ocean) usually attract kinder, more sensitive souls more likely to share your interests and values. An ideal vocation is one which allows you to wear comfortable clothes of your choice   


  • Gnu89
    Gnu89 Community member Posts: 251 Pioneering
    That's nice of you to say.  Thanks.

    @WhatThe
  • WhatThe
    WhatThe Community member, Scope Member Posts: 888 Pioneering

    Thank you back. That's nice to hear! 
     
  • Gnu89
    Gnu89 Community member Posts: 251 Pioneering
    edited September 2023
    @WhatThe I was thinking about what you said about sensitivity to others and looking back it starts to make sense. 

    In my past interviews, the job centre and Maximus the people likely weren't interested in my wellbeing and saw me as a replaceable asset.

    My advisor at the Salvation Army always looked out for my wellbeing and that is the sort of person to look for in my view.
  • WhatThe
    WhatThe Community member, Scope Member Posts: 888 Pioneering

    Nice people usually have a way of showing us they're nice even when we're not receptive to it. I don't think compassion can be taught or acted but it is out there (just not in benefit delivery service).

    Bonding with that guy is important to remember, for sure. When you don't have to struggle to be understood is what you're looking for in any encounter. Maybe contact him and catch up     


  • 2oldcodgers
    2oldcodgers Posts: 743 Connected
    Gnu89 said:
    I have looked back on all the job applications and interviews I failed and I think the problem is me.  I have always been told to "just be myself" but "myself" is awkward, unattractive and uninteresting.

    I am thinking I should "fake it till I make it' instead to make me seem more attractive and employable, even if it compromises my sense of self, like changing my hobbies, being interested in things other people like and changing my appearance to look more normal.

    What do you think?
    The purpose of a job interview is for the applicant to sell themselves to a potential new employer.
    Much like a CV, you should review and possibly rewrite it for every position you apply for ensuring that you match as much as possible the qualities that the employer is looking for.

    You seriously cannot just tell the employer that what you see is what you get.

  • Gnu89
    Gnu89 Community member Posts: 251 Pioneering
    Thank you to everyone for your messages and different views. 

    I am in the process of making beneficial changes in my life, it is a difficult and painful process which has encouraged me to explore self compassion and taking up new interests to broaden my horizons.

Brightness

Complete our feedback form and tell us how we can make the community better.