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Staying positive during your job search

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over 3 years ago

by Nick Begy

Staying positive during your job search

It is a tough market out there, and many of you, like myself have been applying for seemingly 100s of roles on a daily basis. It is only human nature that your positivity and motivation will fall off a cliff at some point.

However, we have to maintain that positive mental attitude, which will build resilience and help build up that motivation again. We can’t give up!!!!

I know there isn’t that magic button you can press, and all is hunky dory, but there are a few ways we can help ourselves.

1. Have a routine

Having some certainty about your day, some structure, and some familiarity will help reduce stress and anxiety, and help you be more productive. Consistency, like getting up at the same time, the same morning routine can help enormously. Check out another blog we have done on how to supercharge your mornings.

Set times of the day to apply for roles, tweak that CV, write covering letters, or as I am doing writing articles and create engagement online such as LinkedIn.

2. Set yourself achievable goals

Creating a To Do list of things you want to achieve is incredibly motivational, and you become far more positive as you tick each one off. I for example sit and watch TV at night and email myself To Do lists, so when I switch on in the morning they are there and ready, and I already have some structure to my day. Apps also are available to do this, but you have to remember to check them. 

Goals could be “to contact x potential employers”, applying for y jobs, or writing an article on LinkedIn. 

3. Make a list of your achievements

Let’s build that positivity by listing some things you have achieved in work and personally. It's all too easy to focus on the negative and the now, and forget you have achieved some great things. Think of problems you have solved, targets hit, people helped, it is all good for your self-esteem.

As an added bonus, having all your professional achievements lined up can also make it easier to include your most impressive work experience on your CV and discuss your career highlights in job interviews.

2 birds with one stone (no birds hurt in this blog by the way).

4. Volunteer

Helping others gives you a great sense of purpose and gives your mind things to focus on. Plus, not only does it keep you busy but it also looks good in that growing gap on your CV. More and more employers will ask “what did you do during these difficult times”, so don’t be stuck for a positive answer.

The other positive is it gets you out and meeting people and networking. It is very easy to become too insular and locked in your 4 walls.

5. Focus on the things you can control

When searching for a new job, there will inevitably be some things that you have no control over, such as the job market, economy, industry trends, or even your location. To keep up your job-search motivation, try to subdue your stress about the things you can't influence and instead focus on what you can do to improve your situation.

Things you can control are your CV, your engagement on tools like LinkedIn, who you contact. 

Even things such as what you eat, which can have a huge influence on wellbeing can be controlled. Here is a good blog we did on that subject:

Give these a go, as they will make a huge difference to how you feel.

Worrying about the uncontrollable will only lead to heightened anxiety..

6. Take a step back

Don’t focus too much on one thing, and become myopic in your outlook. Focussing every second on that perfect job etc will lead to frustration and burnout. Take a step back. 

Spend time away from the computer, go for walks, meet friends, learn something new, take up a hobby. You want to get this chance when you find that perfect job, so take advantage. It will make your whole job search far more productive, and give you something else to focus on.

This situation is temporary, and though it may not seem like it, things will get better.

I know at times it seems bleak, but you are not alone, and if feeling a bit dejected, try this blog on dealing with application rejection.

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