I went to art school and have been working in the creative industry for about five years now. I am going back to school this Fall for nursing though because I didn’t want to purely do art for the rest of my life. I see myself has having dual careers, nursing as the main one (day job) and art as the freelance one.

My question is about my LinkedIn profile!  Should I make my LinkedIn profile for nursing only? Art jobs boil down to the portfolio, so I think having a separate online presence will be enough for freelance. Yes, I think I answered my own question. I don’t think I should mix the two because it will confuse nurse recruiters.

I’ve been reading your blog, and you are right, self-pity gets me nowhere. Yet I have anxiety because I have forgiven myself of my past, yet I cannot forget as the choices haunt my life.

1) I am 40 in Dec.
2) I live with my mother who exasperates me endlessly. I am the eternal teenager and now, in order to just avoid conflict, I have accepted my role as one.
3) I have a daughter in college for nursing. My other is 16, goes to high school, and is working at a tea shop. She lives with me and my mom.
4) I’ve been in poverty.
5) I’m in school, getting an Associate’s Degree in Science, but I only have 8 credits.
6) I’m unemployed–I worked 10 years as a Montessori instructional assistant–stayed too long because I knew I was in for another dead end job.
7)I have great anxiety because I feel like a bum with my mom. I’ve never been financially independent. So now that creates the low self esteem and confidence.

I know you can’t tell me what to do. I had a child at 19 and another at 22. So I’ve never really known myself. Just that I am a very kind person. After ten years and those last two years in that horrible job, I don’t want another dead-end job. I’ve thought about a business. I don’t know what —I’ve babysat and cleaned in my life and that is not my idea of a fulfilling job. I can’t sew. I can barely cook. I don’t have musical talent. And people have always run me so running a business?? Not to mention, how would I start a business on food stamps and school loans? I can barely afford gas for school. All excuses I suspect.

I know all you probably see is negativity, yet these are the realistic facts. I’m stuck. And I feel screwed and desperate. Like I should go to work at the Dollar Store or McDonald’s for less than what I had made at years of the other dead end job.

Enough of a sorrow email, I have just felt compelled to write. Cause I’m a mom. And I feel pathetic with my stance and that I have failed my children.

Here are three ideas:

1. Find the person who is in charge of the area of the company where you want to work. You can use LinkedIn for that. And contact the person. Let them know you want to work with them and ask them to keep you in mind. Then email periodically to check in so you stay on their radar. You can also email them with an updated resume if your resume changes while you’re waiting. It’s good to say, “I just want you to know about this recent accomplishment… and I’m still looking forward to interviewing with you when the time is right for the company.” Something like that.

2. Send an email that is essentially a pitch to do consulting. Show them that they need you to solve a problem they didn’t know they had, or they didn’t realize would be easy to solve – by hiring you. You can start as a consultant and get them to hire you full-time later, or you can convince them in the interview that it’s a full-time position.

3. Work for free at the beginning. At a very small company there is often a need to hire someone before there is money to hire them. If you get a foot in the door before there is money, and you do a good job, then when there’s money the job will already be yours. And bonus: you’ll get extra stock options for working for free.