Middle-aged, crazy to learn skills

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Text/Wang Min Tang Yahua Li Qiuhan Zou Shuai

Source: Shenran (ID: shenrancaijing)

Is your profession more popular as you get older?

For traditional occupations such as doctors, lawyers, teachers, etc., this is not a difficult question to answer, but for many emerging occupations that are popular today, age has become a curse for workers, and 35 years old is a powerful curse. It is regarded as a watershed for professional people.

Age has indeed brought trouble to many middle-aged professionals. An analysis report on middle-aged and elderly job seekers released by Zhaopin Recruitment in 2021 mentioned that 80.1% of middle-aged and elderly job seekers believe that the biggest difficulty in finding a job is the age limit. As the age increases, the risk of being laid off also increases. Among the respondents in the report, job seekers aged 35-40, 41-45, 46-50, and 51-55 were arrested by companies that were operating normally. The proportions of age-related layoffs were 4.8%, 7.6%, 11.5%, and 20.6%, showing a gradual upward trend.

The current employment environment is full of uncertainty. Once middle-aged people lose their jobs, they face even greater pressure for re-employment.

Whether it’s to break the 35-year-old curse, pave the way for future employment, or relieve anxiety and improve themselves, a group of middle-aged people have begun to learn new skills. Learning editing, drawing illustrations, taking various qualification certificates… Recently, we chatted with several professionals over 30 years old who were learning new skills in their spare time.

Among them, some are nearly forty years old, and it took a year to get two practical certificates. The goal is to continuously improve their skills and make themselves more and more versatile; some have a low ceiling for their main business. At the age of ten, he began to learn illustration and found his second career; some were unable to do their main business, could not find a good job, and were disliked in the workplace, so they decided to use off-get off work time to learn editing and prepare for future employment; The hobby is to cultivate skills, and plans to spend thirty years practicing Chinese painting, and when he retires, he will make a living by selling paintings; in order to get rid of the restrictions brought by ordinary education to his workplace, he will gradually challenge the difficult certificates related to his career.

When a person learns new skills in middle age, it is a process of facing reality, facing up to oneself, understanding oneself, and exerting one’s strengths. Below is their story.

Especially with a sense of crisis,

What skills are missing, make up for the test

Xiao Hong | 39 years old business Beijing

I am 39 years old this year. Last year, I took the performance agent qualification certificate, and this year I took the psychological counselor certificate. Both certificates have come in handy.

My main business is business and I have been engaged in related work for more than ten years. Last year, in order to broaden my career path, I sorted out the skills I currently have. In conclusion, I found that I am good at crisis public relations and sales skills. The most important thing is communication skills. I also thought about how to make Your own longboard is longer, and research is a way to improve yourself and to verify your ability.

I have been helping a friend connect with film and television resources for the past two years, but when they want to connect some official and high-level resources, the other party needs me to have a performance agent qualification certificate. After I got this certificate last year, it is now considered a Use it all.

As for the certificate of psychological counselor, I started reading psychology-related books about five years ago, and I have been accumulating knowledge in this area, which not only relieves my psychological pressure, but also better communicates with others. I happen to have a friend who is engaged in vocational education and training. After communicating with him, I feel that I can apply for a class to take a psychological counselor certificate and expand my psychological ability.

After taking the online course a week before the exam, I went to the exam and passed it all at once.

At present, I have not received paid consultation, but some time ago, a mother and daughter in the community encountered some communication difficulties, so they came to me, and I mediated. Although it is an obligation to help, after helping others mediate, I feel very happy myself. I feel that what I have learned is useful, and I can gradually accumulate it in practice. Maybe I can also engage in related work as my main business in the future.

I think that on the one hand, the research is a process of checking and filling omissions. After working for so many years, any skills that are lacking can be quickly filled through the research.

I am an activist myself, and I will do whatever comes to my mind. For example, for the certificate of psychological counselor, several friends around me came to consult me ​​on how to apply for the exam, but in the end, no one signed up. And after I get the certificate, I can do some related things around the certificate, but the people who have been watching it all the time remain in place.

I think a lot of people are talking about lying flat, but they are actually fighting anxiety behind the scenes. Society has been developing and information technology has been iterating, but when a person reaches middle age, as long as he has one more skill, even if he may have to go to a company in a new field and the salary is very low, due to the diversification of his skills, the salary will also have a certain amount. elevated.

I am a person with a particularly sense of crisis. The requirement for myself is to have input all the time. The goal is to continuously complement work skills, expand interests and hobbies, and make myself more and more versatile.

Zero basic learning illustration,

But I have enough volume and draw 10 hours a day

Xiao Ran | 31-year-old freelance second-tier city

I have done marketing planning work in Internet companies, real estate companies, etc. The development path of this career is to manage from the grassroots level, but I am afraid that I feel that I am a planning manager. At 30 years old, I can’t stand it anymore.

After I had my baby in 2021, I started to figure out a way out. The friends around are divided into two categories. One is a mother who is similar to me, with an annual family income of 250,000 to 400,000. They are all very anxious. The other type is the two-dimensional friends who have played together since childhood. They have been painting for many years, and now they are all painters at the top of the pyramid, working in large factories in Shanghai. They don’t see the shadow of anxiety, they make games when comics are in recession, and they make figures when games are in recession. They have skills and can continue to learn, that is, they have confidence.

I have loved to draw since I was a child, but I didn’t learn it specifically. After taking maternity leave, I didn’t want to do my previous job, so I quit my job. My husband asked me to take an MBA exam, improve my education and then look for a job. After reading the books for a few months, the more I read it, the more I hate it.

I thought of outsourcing painting at home, so that I can take care of children and make money, and I like it, and I can still do it until I get old. So I signed up for the illustration online class in early 2021 and started learning. There were college students, high school students, and junior high school students among my classmates. I didn’t dare to talk to anyone for fear of not being able to keep up with their new vocabulary or being asked how old I was. Most of them have a good painting foundation since childhood. I have zero foundation and feel a huge gap, but I have social animal experience, enough to draw 10 hours a day, and hand in the most homework.

At the beginning, my family was very supportive, but learning to draw is a matter of complete disproportion between the initial effort and the gain. I was busy every day and didn’t make money, and my family began to not understand it.

After learning original painting for a year, I went to an agent of a game company to work as an original artist for 2 months, but my home was 38 kilometers away from the company, and the commute time was too long. Later, I quit my job to receive drafts at home and became a freelance illustrator.

Now I have received a lot of business drafts, and each picture is quoted at 1000-2000 yuan, and the monthly income is about 15,000 yuan, which is higher than my previous planning salary. I hope to reach the level of 5,000 yuan in a picture next year.

In life, I live more freely now, I work out 4 times a week, and I can take care of my baby. Do what you want to do, and leave when you want to take a vacation. Psychologically, I used to find a psychological counselor every month to relieve anxiety, but now I don’t need it anymore. I remember the last time the counselor chatted with me: “After you started your career, you found that you are also a valuable person, and you finally put yourself I put it in a very important position.” At the same time, my friends and family members were impressed by me, and my self-confidence also increased.

I already have the confidence, and I have learned self-esteem and self-love, and my mentality is very stable. Looking back, many of my former colleagues who were planning in real estate companies have lost their jobs, and my transition was fairly successful.

For professionals, if your main business is an iron job, or you have more and more popular skills, congratulations. If not, I suggest that you quickly master a skill that can last until the age of 30. After the age of 30, there will be old and young, and there will be a mid-life crisis. It is too easy to be anxious.

After doing the main business for four years, I was disliked.

Learn Clips to Prepare for Entrepreneurship

Zhao Zhao | 38 years old Film and television copywriting planning Second-tier cities

I am 38 years old, my main business is film and television copywriting planning, and I am now learning editing.

In 2018, I started to do film and television copywriting planning. I graduated with a major in journalism. After graduation, I worked on websites, magazines, and editors. But after doing it as a career, I found myself growing slower and slower.

Film and television copywriting is different from other copywriting. In addition to writing skills, it also needs a sense of picture. When I work, I need to write proposals, text scripts, and shooting plans, and I also need a certain amount of eloquence. Compared with other colleagues, I can’t do it well.

When I changed jobs this year, I found that it was hard to find a good job, and the good company I wanted to go to was not successful. I feel that my eloquence is average, and my image is also ordinary. Once I fail to find a job, I lose confidence once. Later, I came to a small company and was unable to do it.

In March of this year, my computer was about to break down. From thinking about what kind of computer to buy, I thought about my future employment. I originally wanted to do film and television, but this career is growing slowly, and I am not too young. I have plans to save money to buy a house and get married, and I want to make more money.

I just wanted to learn a new skill. I thought about learning photography, but the equipment is expensive and expensive, and there is another way to learn editing, a computer is enough, so I spent 9,000 yuan to buy a computer with good performance, wondering if I can become an editor in the future .

Now everyone is playing short videos. In recent years, the demand for editing short videos is huge. There are only a few people in our company, so the business is a bit busy.

After I decided to learn editing, I went to the online course to study two or three lessons every night after get off work. It took me two months to finish the course, and now I can do some entry-level editing.

My professional age is not very anxious. Some seniors are still active in the industry, but I have professional pressure. I think if I can do copywriting and editing at the same time, I can set up my own studio and hire a few editors to do the work alone, and maybe I can turn to the director in the future.

If you want to learn skills, I think it depends on what you like. If you are not in the industry you like, you can spend half a year or a year relying on the industry you like. Everything has to be based on your heart.

Ten years of studying Chinese painting,

Plan to study for another 20 years to make a living by selling paintings

Yaocao | 43-year-old publishing industry practitioner in Beijing

After middle age, I kept learning new skills. Now, I have learned to draw Chinese paintings and I can play the piano.

I am in the publishing industry, doing research projects, and also involved in some exhibitions, but the publishing industry’s exhibitions have not been done for three years, and the income has decreased. I am also thinking about how to make money in the future.

Among the new skills I learned, I spent more time on drawing. I started learning when I was 30 years old, and I have been learning for ten years. Generally, I will find Chinese painting tutorials on the Internet. There are many masters in our unit. They can point out my shortcomings, and I will correct them according to their opinions.

Yaocao's paintings / provided by the interviewee Yaocao’s paintings / provided by the interviewee

There is a certain market demand for this skill. A friend of mine who is an art editor resigned and made a living by drawing illustrations for big media. When my father taught medical courses, he didn’t have any wall charts, and he didn’t know how to draw. It was my mother who drew him the human body. hanging paintings. When I first wanted to learn to paint, I watched my mother paint every day, and I followed along.

In fact, it is very difficult to sell paintings, even more difficult to earn than the royalties. First of all, you have to become famous before the paintings can be sold. However, I also found that people who study Chinese painting generally live longer and continue to improve their skills. I am confident that in another 20 years, after retirement, I will be able to reach the level of selling paintings for a living.

Ten years ago, when I was in Panjiayuan, I saw a particularly exquisite Chinese painting with fine brushwork. The painting was of a tiger, but it only sold for 20 yuan. After that, I basically stopped painting flowers, birds and tigers. What I think is that if people can be painted, there may be sales. There is already a profession on the Internet. People are painted online, and the paintings are delivered by express.

Even if I don’t think about making money, I just like it as a hobby. It takes at least seven or eight hours to paint a picture, which is a long time, but after painting, I feel full of energy, unlike reading, I will feel dizzy after reading for a long time.

I think people still have to learn something new often. Many people around me “died before the age of 30”. Failure to study leads them to always stick to the views before the age of 30. When they encounter different views, what other people say is useless. It’s as if the calculator is broken, and no matter what is entered, it only outputs a number.

Education has limited my career.

Testimonials can prove themselves better

Elsa | 31 years old financial position Beijing

I switched to a financial company, and I think I’ve been promoted in the workplace a little faster than many of my peers, and now I’m in management. The thinking and thinking of doing executive work and management work are indeed different, and now there is more thinking from the first perspective.

Now I am 31 years old, I am taking the CMA Level 1 (professional qualification created by the American Institute of Certified Management Accountants), and I plan to take the first exam in March next year. For an interdisciplinary person like me, CMA is quite difficult.

CMA is not my first time to test. As early as 5 years ago, the seniors of the company suggested that everyone take the fund qualification certificate or securities qualification certificate. Everyone bought the book and signed up. In the end, it was only me who passed the test. There are also many colleagues around me who have been taking various certification exams for their own reasons. Some of them have very good academic qualifications and can learn quickly no matter what they learn. Some people have very clear goals and want to enter a certain industry. Take a friend of mine as an example. She was in her 30s at the time. She changed jobs for a year or two. After she passed the CFA Level 2 (Chartered Financial Analyst) exam, she went to a very good company.

Because I graduated from an ordinary second book, I can still feel the resistance brought by my education. Many particularly good offers are determined to be me, but because of the red line of academic qualifications, there is no way to go, which is really regrettable. So it also makes me want to prove my ability most directly through some certificates. After all, in the interview process, work experience and work ability are not objective enough. It is better to show a certificate of such and such.

I have a friend who is also keen on research. Her point of view is that as long as the certificate has nothing to do with her life and work, she will not choose it no matter how popular or good it is. It inspires me, and indeed you learn to be more patient when your job requires it. Time is precious for someone in their 30s, and choosing the right exam is more important than rushing forward blindly.

Once I reach the age of 30, anxiety becomes an inescapable concern. On the one hand, I feel that there is not much time left for myself to improve, and on the other hand, my memory and concentration ability are declining. A friend who was a few years older than me once said to me, “If I were at your current age, I would definitely be able to accomplish many, many things”, which made me feel a little relieved. Apart from doing what I am doing now, what else can I do?

*The title image is from Visual China, and the unmarked images in the text are from unsplash. At the request of the interviewee, Xiao Hong, Xiao Ran, Zhao Zhao, Yaocao and Elsa are all pseudonyms in the article.

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