Staying positive during a job search is easier said than done. Job search fatigue is a real thing, and getting rejected over and over again can really hurt your confidence. It’s very overwhelming, especially when the clock is ticking.
Most of us spend hours wading through job postings, fine-tuning our career documents, and uploading them into cyberspace. It’s rare if we hear anything back, and we wonder if our submissions fell into a big black hole. Here are some tips to help you improve your job search mindset and maintain mental fortitude.
Tips for Improving Your Mindset
- Know that finding a job takes time. The average job search can take anywhere from 6 to 9 months. To maintain a sense of fulfillment, try committing yourself to a purposeful project or some volunteer work. It’ll take your mind off things as well as improve your resume.
- Avoid worrying! This can be tough to do, but anxiety can cause you to lose focus and miss out on opportunities. Try developing a plan for dealing with stress and setbacks.
- Realize that jobs are always available. It may take a while before you hear back from an employer, but sometimes it’s just about looking in the right place at the right time. Try using a combination of approaches like using job boards, networking, and volunteering to make the most out of your efforts.
- Be selective in your job search. The more specific you are about the kind of work you’re looking for, the more likely you are to find it.
Treat Job Searching like a Full-Time Job
One way to keep your mind healthy while job-hunting and to increase motivation is to treat it like a full-time position. You will want to set your alarm for the morning and get up at the same time you would normally get up for a full-time position. The point is to go through your normal routine. Eat some breakfast, drink your coffee, and even get dressed up like you’re going to work.
Carve out a part of your day to focus on job hunting, a portion for networking, and then finally, make sure that you have time for self-improvement. While you are taking time to search for jobs, make sure to increase your opportunities by using multiple platforms. There are many great ones out there, and you can find a job through Lensa, or other similar platforms that fit your specific needs. Also, get in the habit of ending at the same time.
Manage Your Expectations
The most important recommendation is to manage your expectations. A lot of people go into their job search thinking that they’re going to throw out ten applications, get five interviews, three offers, and then they’re going to be done in one month. That’s just simply not how it works. Realistically, if you apply to 100 jobs, you should expect to get 95 rejections, about five interviews, and maybe one or two offers. If you do the math here, you’re really looking at a 1 to 2% success rate, and that is perfectly NORMAL!
I urge you to remain realistic in your job hunt. If you’ve only applied to a couple of dozen positions, you really haven’t been at it long enough. If you’ve only been applying for positions for a few months without any luck, just give it a little bit more time. There’s no need to get down on yourself, you were hirable before, and you’re hirable now.
The Bottom Line
At times it can feel like the odds are stacked against you, but it’s important to realize that job searches are hard for everyone. Stay strong, remain positive, and stick with it; an opportunity will come your way soon!