You send off hundreds of applications and despite having the skills and experiences required by the employer, you don’t always get the job. It becomes a cycle where you never seem to get to the finish post. Occasionally you feel that burst of anticipation when you think you’re one step closer to your dream job, but then the dreaded feedback of “you weren’t successful this time” comes again.
When the job search continues on longer than you had expected, it can easily get you down. You were probably wise enough to have a plan of action in place and if all failed you even thought of a backup plan, but regardless of your efforts you have fallen off track. You feel the willpower of staying in all night to research jobs instead of joining your friends for a drink and a much-needed gossip. Your plan A had you finding a job within a month and plan B even gave you 3 but the months keep passing by and you seem no closer to finding that perfect career.
What can you do next?
How can you keep motivated in the job search and handle the weight of unemployment? Here are 4 great tips to getting back into work, and more importantly, remaining positive and productive during your job hunt.
4 Ways to Stay Positive and Productive During Your Job Search
1. Set Yourself Clear and Realistic Goals
When you’re out of work, it’s important to keep yourself on track. That’s where your weekly goals come into play.
Sundays are the ideal time to sit down and set up your week. Starting the week off on the right foot is the best way to ensure you maintain focus and finish everything by the end of the week.
Remember to be realistic — don’t set yourself huge unattainable goals like receiving a job offer by the end of the week because it will probably fail. Instead, break down your goals. Having small actions to achieve each day will help keep you motivated.
There’s something so satisfying about being able to tick things off your to-do list and seeing your achievements written down in front of you. Whether you prefer using your phone, tablet, or the good old pen and paper, make sure your targets are always in black and white and never just expect yourself to remember them. Having it down on paper will help you visualize the end goal.
2. Review Your Goals
You can’t just write a list of goals and then put away the book and expect it to just happen. Mid-week is a great time to re-evaluate how the week is going and adjust your plan of action if required.
Things change, so you have to be open in the job search to reacting to the unexpected and altering your plan to suit. For example, you might start the week thinking you’re going to focus on your Linkedin account but then you get an interview offer. You need to be able to switch up your strategy to be able to focus on the more important task. So don’t panic if your plan doesn’t happen perfectly! It’s all about prioritizing and being open to change.
3. Get Personal With Your Job Search
If you’re looking for a job, it’s almost impossible to do it without getting online, whether that be connecting with employers online, using social media to network with recruiters or using job boards to apply for posts. You definitely need an online presence, but that shouldn’t be where the job search stops.
It’s easy to forget how important networking is, and if you’re unemployed, networking is a huge part of going back to work.
There are 3 easy ways to start the process, and don’t worry! You don’t need to be an expert Sales person to have success with networking:
Grab a Coffee with a Friend
Sounds like a simple and great chance for a catch-up, but it’s also a brilliant and effective way to find out about jobs available at the companies your friends work for and potentially get a few referrals. Always keep friends and family in the loop on your employment status as you never know what they might overhear or come across that could be perfect for you. For any position, the best way to get noticed by an employer is through a referral from a current employee, so ask the question.
Go to a Networking Event
Whether a networking event or career fair, they’re a great way to meet employers face-to-face and discuss how your skills would fit with their business. Where else can you get in front of the decision maker and make your interest in their organization known?
Join a Job Club
Research your local job clubs and get involved! They’re usually run by charities, libraries, or local councils. They’re a brilliant way to get some much-needed career advice from experts whilst also meeting people in your situation. You will be able to share advice with like-minded people and gain connections that could be useful in your job search.
4. Make Time for Yourself
The job search is a definitely a job in itself, so it’s vital to take a bit of time away from the screen and the countless applications and have some time for yourself.
Whether that’s just getting out of the house for a walk or meeting up with friends, it will give you that well-deserved break and you’ll actually feel more refreshed and ready to start again on that career search. You should never feel guilty about having time off. Just because you’re unemployed doesn’t mean you haven’t had a busy or even a stressful week. Why not take the weekend off?
Handling unemployment is all about your mindset. Staying positive is key to not only staying focused when researching and sending off applications but also when performing at the interview stages. Using these 4 tips will help you remain productive. Remember, just because you’re unemployed doesn’t mean you’re doing anything wrong! It just takes time and a lot of patience.
- 4 Ways to Stay Positive and Productive During Your Job Search - June 13, 2018