The longer you look for a job, the tougher it becomes. Who could blame you for feeling despondent, discouraged, and even depressed? Unfortunately, all of that also makes it harder to get out there and look. And the less you get out and look, the less likely a job offer will come your way. A major part of anyone’s job hunt is staying motivated. Let’s look at some ways you can keep your head in the game during your job search.
No matter how long you expect to be searching for jobs, the actual time it will take will be far longer. If you’re really wondering how to stay motivated during your job search, you need to play the long game. You can set goals to monitor progress and keep your motivation up. Goals like, fill out 5 job applications, add one new skill to your resume, or attend one online workshop or networking event. Don’t overextend yourself. Working too hard is counterproductive. It burns you out.
If you’re working part-time, freelancing, contracting, or otherwise occupying some form of employment, track your finances. You need to get a sense of how much money you need each week and how much time you can spare for job searching.
If you’re having trouble staying motivated during your job search, one of the best things you can do is take stock of how much progress you’ve made. Dig up old versions of your resume. You’ll be struck by how, well, bad they were, and how far you’ve come since. Reread old cover letters. Again, you’ll be blown away by how much better your current version is.
What was your initial motivation for looking for a new job? After weeks of unsuccessful job hunting, we can easily lose sight of our primary motivation and feel like it’s easier to stay in the same job. Perhaps you want new challenges, more flexible work hours, to break into a new industry, or simply find a role in a company where there’s room to move up and gain more responsibility. Perhaps you’d like a higher salary or more benefits, or an opportunity to learn new skills.
Chatting to family, friends, and mentors about your job search can give you an outlet for your frustrations and help you see things from a different perspective. Didn’t get a response from that job you applied for? Perhaps a chat with your best friend will help you realize it wasn’t quite right for you anyway. Cringing over an interview that didn’t go as well as you’d hoped? Maybe your career mentor will give you some tips on how to nail them in the future.
Look back on what you’ve achieved in your life so far and remember how capable you are. In particular, remind yourself of how far in your career you’ve come, the skills you’ve picked up along the way, and the amount of knowledge you have. Doing this will help you to stay positive and realize what a great asset you will be to the right company.
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