Arlene Chandler is a freelance writer who enjoys helping others find their path in the career world. When she's not enjoying sipping on iced green tea in the sun, she writes career, business, and insurance advice for Suncorp.
How to Stay Positive during a Brutal Job Search
Job seeking, in some ways, is a game of luck; while it does come down to utilising your resources effectively, it partly relies on a chance encounter that the right person will see your resume and need your services at exactly the right time. Sometimes that scenario occurs effortlessly and easily, but for those times when landing an interview and scoring a position seems impossible, it's important to stay positive. A good attitude will carry your efforts far along, and if you're struggling with frustration and disappointment, here are a few ways to help you keep your vibes high on your job seeking adventure.
Shift Your Focus
While the key to landing a job is persistence and dedication, obsessing about it isn't the way to go. Putting all your energy into job seeking and basing your emotions and feelings off of the results will burn you out. Instead, make sure you're giving yourself some space to enjoy the little things in life; whether it be watching your favourite movie, catching up with a friend, or baking something sweet, always allow yourself room to breathe. By taking your mind off of the search for a moment, you'll allow the tension and stress to dissolve, and you'll be able to return with a clear mind ready to strategise your next move.
List off the Things You're Grateful For
A discouraging job search can make it easy to stoop into a negative mindset, but fight the urge to lower yourself and your mood. In order to stay positive, it helps to list off the things you're grateful for. Start with the obvious; your family, friends, health, or home are good things to remind yourself to be thankful for, but don't be afraid to stretch your gratitude further. The more things you can list off, the better you'll feel, and once you find yourself running out of room to write anything else down, the more uplifting of a perspective you'll look at all areas of your life with.
Know You're Not Alone
Unfortunately, struggling with unemployment is a common occurrence, but it does help to know you're not alone. Try to connect with someone who has been in a similar situation as you before; they might be able to offer helpful advice as to how you can speed up your search or they could just provide some much needed commiseration. Either way, take solace in the fact that there are many individuals who have been in a similar situation and were able to come out of it stronger and more determined than they were before.
Find Alternative Ways to Bring in Income
When money's tight, it can intensify the stress and discord in all aspects of your life as well, so utilize any opportunity to bring in extra cash. Have a yard sale where you can sell off all the items you rarely use, consider downsizing your car or home, or offer to do some light housework for a neighbour. With the availability of free advertising on the internet, you can market any skills or services you think you can make some alternative income off of, and any opportunity for bringing in money during unemployment is one worth pursuing.
When you're used to working a job, it can be hard adjusting to having a surplus of free time on your hands, so it's important to keep yourself busy. Having too much time to think can lead to a spiral of negative thoughts, so in order to keep your morale high, provide yourself with plenty to do. Make a list of daily goals; obviously, you'll want to schedule a few hours to dedicate to your job search, but also leave room for areas of personal development. Exercising, meditating, trying out a new skill set, or volunteering your time are all things that will keep you feeling purposeful and motivated until a position opens up.
Being out of work can take a toll on your self-esteem, but a job search is always more brutal when it's accompanied with a pessimistic attitude. It might seem hard to stay positive after weeks or months of job seeking, but by doing what you can to keep your confidence high and yourself fulfilled with a sense of purpose, you'll be able to make it through until the right employment opportunity opens up.