When You're Looking For Work, Positivity Matters
Author: Michael Scaletti
Looking for work can be exceptionally frustrating, especially at times like these. It's worth noting, however, that simply by remaining positive you can improve the likely outcome of your entire job hunt. Whether this is the tenth interview of your job search or the hundredth, it is important not to let any negativity or frustration escape during an interview, or when talking to a potential employer. That can be hard though, and its a lot more useful to share some tips on HOW to stay positive than it is to just tell you to do. So let's get started!
Express Your Feelings
We all need support structures to get us through difficult times. You may feel like you're complaining too much or are being a burden, but the truth is keeping your frustration bottled up is neither healthy nor productive. It's also a good way for it to boil over at an inopportune time, like, say, the middle of an interview! There's no weakness in needing help, support, or just a shoulder. Talk to a friend, or your partner, or your family. Get those negative feelings off your chest and you can begin to deal with the source of them in a healthy fashion!
You're probably not going to get the first job you interview for. You may not get the fifth job you interview for. That's okay. Remember that looking for a job is a process, and prepare yourself mentally for the long hall before you even start. More useful than expecting to have a new job within a certain time frame is to give yourself measured and achievable goals that you have complete control over, such as "I'm going to apply to 5 jobs this week", and then reward yourself when you achieve them! That way, not only are you making progress but you can FEEL that progress.
Make Time for Life
I'm sure you've heard people describe looking for a job as a full-time job in and of itself. There is certainly some truth to that. But just like a good job will have a quality work-life balance, make sure to make time for life during your job search! Set aside a certain number of hours each day for looking for work, and when those hours are done, STOP. Take some time for yourself. Focus on relaxing, read a book, watch your favorite show or movie, or grab a bite to eat with some friends. Life shouldn't stop just because you're looking for a new job.
Track How Far You've Come
This one doesn't apply if you're just entering the professional world and are looking for your first or second job. I bet if you look back at the first job you had and compare it to your last or current job, they look pretty different. We all grow and change and progress over time. Take a minute to look back at all the progress YOU'VE made. Just that moment can be enough to help break through the doldrums and realize that your journey is on the right track.
There will likely be a lot of time during your job search where you feel like you've hit a brick wall. You've applied to every local job in your industry you could find, you haven't had any positive responses yet, and you're still waiting to hear from the last ten interviews. This is a good moment to take a step back and give yourself a quick break from the job search while still making progress on your overall goal of getting a new job.
Do a quick analysis of your skills and proficiencies. Recognize where they might be lacking for your industry, or where adding a new one might open up additional pathways to employment. Then go about adding that skill or proficiency! Take an online class, but a workbook, or simply go through a youtube workshop. Learning new skills is not only invaluable to your job search, it's also incredibly rewarding.
Contact The Job Shop
Don't forget that you don't have to go it alone. There are a ton of useful resources available for your job search, and one of the most useful is an Agency. At The Job Shop we can provide you with career guidance, resume writing help, and interview tips, plus match you with top companies throughout the bay area looking to hire! And we're a free resource for job seekers, so you never have to worry about paying us a dime for helping you find the perfect job!