2024 Gen X Job Hunting and Resume Writing Tips

by Denise Renee  - January 27, 2024

I NOW THINK ABOUT LIFE DIFFERENTLY 

The closer I got to my 50th birthday this past December 25, the more I started thinking about things differently.

I realized I needed to stop taking my health for granted and get more intentional about making and maintaining certain changes. While I have a useful and effervescent side to my personality and I easily pass for 35, the reality is my body is aging. There are certain things I cannot afford to take for granted anymore, especially since I want to be highly functional, lucid, and have the best possible quality of life as I age.

I am particularly concerned about this because my 12-year-old son (who was born when I was 37) can be greatly affected by my choices. Last year, he suffered the loss of a grandparent he was really close to. I know he is not interested in losing me or his dad anytime soon. (Or ever, if he could help it.)

I think about how hard I have been hustling the last few years, but not necessarily seeing all the results I’ve wanted to. Juxtapose that with the dream life I want to live, and I realize that at 50, I still have a long way to go towards accomplising my goals. I am guesstimating that I have about 10 more years of hustle in me before I’m gonna wanna slow down and have a much more relaxed pace at 60 and beyond.

That makes me think deeply about my state of work, being a business owner, and being a content creator, or a personal brand as a Gen Xer today. The tips, tricks, and strategies I used to gain employment in the past are not working as they did before. Times, technology and the workforce have changed since I graduated college in 1995. Dramatically.  

My 2023 job search brought a cold reality crashing down on my head like an ice bucket challenge: to the outside world, at least on paper, I am “old.” At best I’m aging.

HOW TO WORK IN CORPORATE AMERICA  WHILE AGING IN 2024

I love how traditional Asian and African communities really value their senior members. But not in western cultures. Youth is glorified, exploited, then easily tossed aside for the next new and youthful  thing or person.

And it’s worse for women than for men. Somehow, men in our society get the opportunity to age gracefully and still have access to the same things as when they were younger (the ability to continually earn high wages, the ability to attract and impregnate 20-year-old women and much more). Meanwhile, women are encouraged to fight aging and try to look for as long as she possibly can, is considered matronly as soon as she hits 40 and almost useless as soon as she is premenopausal.

Thankfully, I personally do not subject myself to those types of standards. I love where I am in life: flaws, failures, fabulosity and all. But I must navigate the world outside my door who could care less.

I made a decision in late 2022 that although I had chucked the corporate world (again) in 2017, I determined to make another go at it for at least three years, (12 at the most) while simultaneously building my brand. My thought was that I could use my corporate position for living expenses and health insurance because I’d learned the hard way it is tough to draw living money out of a young brand that needs the same money to continue growing. I quickly realized the bind I had put myself in: hunting in a hostile job market while aging.

As I applied tirelessly to job after job last year, I had to wonder if all of the experience I was so proud to display was actually working against me. I have always been acutely aware that in some spaces, my female-ness and my Black-ness are not considered or valued. Now I have an additional layer to think about; my aging. I had to get smart about how I would plot the best course to navigate the treacherous waters of others’ opinions, especially when my income depends on their decisions.

After digging into my bag of tricks, plus comparing notes to others in my age range negotiating the same rocky terrain, I came up with some strategies to help me have a more sane (and successful… I started a new position in November 2023) job hunting experience. 

So if you or someone you know is a Gen Xer who has been struggling in their job search recently, please share this block post with them. The above video is a compilation of tips that have been working. Strategy number three in particular is what I used to land the current job I have today.

But the first step to getting a job is usually having a stellar resume. And there, too, in order for Gen Xers  to give themselves the best chance of being selected for an interview, you may find that you need to represent yourself differently than you have before, in order to be competitive. In the following video, I outline a number of tactics you can use if winning an interview has been a challenge for you.

BEYOND MY OPINION AND EXPERIENCES

I appreciate your presence on this post as you are learning from my experiences and considering my opinions. But I’m not the only voice that you can listen to.

Below, I’ve compiled resources I trust you will find helpful in your job search efforts right now. After having epic commutes to work almost all my life, both in New York City and in the metro Atlanta area, I’m tired! I’m all about the “work from home” life! And if you are too, I have some links below to some high paying WFH jobs that are hiring right now (as of the time I hit publish on this blog).

Additionally, I have links to where you can find more flexible work opportunities, free (but highly respected) certification courses to level up your skills and marketability and inspiration on the why’s and how’s of building a brand or business in your 50’s and beyond. 

(Disclaimer – Links to resources outside this website are provided in good faith as a courtesy. I am not personally connected to these sources in any way, nor am I responsible or liable in any way for the content you may see once you follow these links. You are responsible for conducting  your own due diligence on any opportunity or advice you wish to pursue. Please proceed responsibly.)

Best Source For Legitimate Work From Home Jobs

https://www.flexjobs.com/lp/remote-jobs1

High Paying Work From Home Jobs Hiring Now(ish) –

General List – https://www.flexjobs.com/blog/post/high-paying-work-from-home-jobs/

LabCorp – https://youtu.be/xIDlXtJ4cd0

Hulu – https://youtu.be/Ap5RL5S38sM

13 Night Time Positions – https://youtu.be/aIYt5EDqU0E

Hilton – https://youtu.be/wxgD0zRIsQo

Improve Your Tech Skills / Free (and Reputable) Certification Courses

https://certifications.facebookblueprint.com/student/catalog

https://grow.google/certificates/

https://www.linkedin.com/learning/browse/certifications (one month free)

https://www.semrush.com/blog/free-seo-courses/

https://analytics.google.com/analytics/academy/

https://course.uxwritinghub.com/free_course

Building a Brand in Your 40s, 50s and 60s (Inspirational Stories and Practical Tips)

From A TED Talk – https://youtu.be/Ogce5D2XMZ0

From Tueplo Academy – https://youtu.be/aR_d8oZcBeQ

From Chalean Johnson – https://youtu.be/HxXNv8Rzgys

From The Department Podcast – https://youtu.be/YjWOxhMD9Ho

From Noah Kagan – https://youtu.be/_jpibt9ueZo

From Sixty and Me – https://youtu.be/kc6QnF3s1SU

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Denise Renee

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