Jobless 34-year-old programmer who stayed only 2-15 months in any job looking for direction

Hi Gilbert,

I saw various posts that you guys have worked on this website, and I was encouraged to send out this email.

I never thought that I would end up in such a predicament.

It has come to the extent that I have no choice but to send this email.

But, I am not sure if you guys can help.

Anyway, I am an unemployed 34 year old guy.

I started work in the helpdesk but kept switching companies due to low work performance and/or unhappiness with the management.

The longest period I have stayed in an company was 7 months.

I managed to get a certificate in programming and got a job in the industry.

Strangely, that did not stop me from switching.

I then worked for many companies in the past 8 years.

However, each job lasted only 2-15 months.

I was never fired from any of my jobs.

All this is due to various non-professional reasons.

I keep wanting to move on, repeatedly.

But every move ended up a lateral one.

I did not move up the ladder.

For my second last job, I got my highest salary ever.

A long-time friend then recommended that I try testing (a niche area).

I tried that and felt a great sense of achievement and satisfaction!

I thought that this was perhaps my real calling.

I decided to pursue that area instead.

I managed to get a job in this industry.

But things turned bad in the end.

And I decided to leave again.

I took a month break to think things through.

Just last week, I sent out my resumes and went for interviews.

One interviewer asked what do I see myself in 3-10 years time.

I felt so lost.

At my age, where can I possibly see where my career path’s heading?

If I were a fresh grad, I can still share my aspirations.

But now? Sigh.

I went for another 2 interviews but got an outright rejection.

During this period, I also did some online research and found out that my passion/calling may be in dim-sum making.

I have never cooked in my life, but I thought, since I like dim-sum so much, I can learn to do it by learning from cookbooks and see what might come out from it.

But problems arise as I have only 9 months of rainy day funds.

I will also be spending money on ingredients as for my practice.

I am not sure how long it can actually last me.

If I spend time on doing dim-sum, how do I convince the interviewers that I am worth hiring?

Although I have a background in IT, these days, I find myself shunning the IT books in libraries.

Any advice for me?

Much appreciated.

Kevin Lee

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