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Recently fired. Climbing out of depression. I need some advice.

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  • Recently fired. Climbing out of depression. I need some advice.

    A week ago I was fired from my job as a pre press graphic designer at a medium sized print company. It wasn't caused by any particular event, just a series of small mistakes that built up on my record. I don't really have an excuse besides this year has been rough.. I've been deeply depressed and anxious about a lot of personal things and I definitely allowed it to affect my work. At some point I think I realized it was coming and just kind of gave up..

    I spent most of last week doing a lot of nothing. Thinking about my options and taking inventory of how things were going in life. It's honestly been eye opening. I definitely understand the whole 'being fired was the best thing ever' mind set because I can easily see how messed up I've let things get. I know I'm such a better person than what I've thought of myself.

    I know I have the technical skill and creativity to find a career I'd enjoy. I know I can do it. I've just got to fix this bs depression I'm stuck in.

    Ive begun to weigh options of the path in front of me. I don't know how to really 'dive back into it' now and finally pursue a career path that might be satisfying instead of just breezing through half-assed dead end jobs.

    As for what kind of career I want to pursue, I'm still thinking about that. Like I said I've spent so much time being really hard on myself about my work. Even though I've had several peers and mentors tell me otherwise, Ive been so critical about everything I've ever done. Everything I wanted to do felt just like a pipe dream, like I wasn't cut out for a 'real' graphic design job. I hate that I thought like that. So much wasted time.

    It's hard to explain what I want to do career wise. Here is just a list of most of my skills and interests that might relate to a career

    Drawing Cartoons
    Packaging
    Developing Ideas
    Giving Feedback
    Telling Stories
    Presenting Information
    Working with text
    Brainstorming
    Working with Color
    Creating patterns

    Drawing cartoons is one of my favorite things to do. Growing up I always wanted to make a cartoon or comic or something but now I think I'd really enjoy something like designs for childrens products, toys or snacks or something? That would be a dream come true really!

    Thing is I don't know what to really do right now. I need to get moving forward and get out of old habits. I'd even love to move away from my current city and get a fresh start. Finally get my head cleared and start making improvements.

    I don't totally know what I'm asking. I don't even know what kind of answer Im looking for. I just want some form of advice. Im feeling this weird mix of anxiety, excitement, opportunity, and defeat all at once and it's honestly motivating. I want to get started now!

  • #2
    Seriously, have you tried antidepressants or therapy? Depression is a serious problem that interferes with people's lives, and you've just spelled out an excellent example. If you haven't already done so, make an appointment with your doctor, and tell him/her how you're feeling. There are treatments that usually get good results. No excuses, get it done.

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    • #3
      You for the typical designer personality type. try to stay positive and keep a positive vibe (easier said than done, I know)... I know it's not easy bit you aren't alone.

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      • #4
        You might need medication, or you might not. You could just need a different focus. Graphic design can be depressing if you are mostly working for clients that you don't feel are doing anything to make the world a better place.

        My art school was geared towards ad agency work, but I wasn't interested in selling consumers products that they might want but don't need. I've always felt that there should be more to life than consumerism. So I worked in-house for companies that I thought were doing things to make the world a better place. Some of them were interesting. Some of them weren't. The most depressing company I worked for was an insurance company. It only lasted a month. In hindsight, I should have never taken that job.

        Try shifting your focus away from graphic design and towards something more meaningful. That more meaningful thing may include your graphic design skills, but graphic design will be secondary to the mission of whatever you choose. Do some soul searching and figure out what you are really passionate about. It's probably not graphic design. Graphic design is a means to an ends. Take any job that will help you get by, and don't let the job get in the way of what you are passionate about.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by designzombie View Post
          ...companies that I thought were doing things to make the world a better place.

          ...an insurance company.
          Ooo geezus, that blew the glass right outta my contradiction sensor!

          I'd rather be killed than come to your party, but if you don't invite me, I'll kill myself.

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          • #6
            It sounds like the depression is what's holding you back. It might help to talk to someone, even if it's just a friend. I would take the time to enjoy having no responsibilities job-wise, and do whatever the hell you want for a while. Try a new hobby. Find things about your life that make you happy.

            You have a good range of talents. When you are ready, pick the thing you most like doing and follow that.
            Time flies like an arrow - fruit flies like a banana

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            • #7
              as the B says, depression is a very serious problem. you have to get out of it as soon as you can or things will get harder to get out. if you haven't tried antidepressants or therapy do it quickly. you are very talented so you can shine again. Don't think just do it!

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              • #8
                Exercise is good, get those endorphins pumping! Good luck.

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