Anxiety, self doubt, frustration and impatience are just some of the emotions that seem to come along with a job search. I’ve experience it myself. But I got to the point where I realized the job search is going to take however long it takes and I refuse to suffer the entire time. Here are the paradigm shifts I made to calm down, motivate myself to keep trying and reestablish peace & hope as the prevailing emotions during my job search.
1. Realize suffering is a CHOICE
I realized the frustration, anger, fear and inadequacy I felt had nothing to do with how long my job search was taking but my reaction to how long the job search was taking.
When I took responsibility for how I was feeling it empowered me to identify the thoughts that were causing the suffering and choose different thoughts.
What would I have to believe in order to be stressed out about my job search? Here are some of my ‘unfiltered,’ thoughts.
- This is taking too long!
- I haven’t even had an interview yet
- My wife shouldn’t have to carry this financial burden
- I’ve put in to much work to be in this situation
Here are some replacement thoughts that reduced my stress.
- I’m doing everything I can, I accept it’ll take however long it takes
- Every situation in life is temporary, this is temporary to0
- It’s the end of the year, HR Managers aren’t even looking at Resumes yet
- Marriage is a partnership, sometimes one member has to pull more weight in one area than another. I wouldn’t judge her if the situation were reversed so I know she isn’t judging me
- I’ve planted seeds and they will grow
What thoughts are causing your stress? What are some replacement thoughts that would reduce that stress?
2. Take external CIRCUMSTANCES into account
Taking responsibly for our emotional state is just as important as realizing what is not our responsibility. The end of the year for example, is when HR Managers and Recruiters are on vacation and not reviewing Resumes.
So if you submitted applications in November – December and haven’t heard back – chill out. Wait until week 2 of January and send follow up emails to HR Managers.
3. LET GO of expectations & a need for specific results
Doing this allows you to refocus on doing what you love rather than what you think will get you results.
Surprisingly, refocusing on what you love to do makes achieving the outcomes you were after in the first place much easier.
4. STOP RESISTING your situation & look at it stoically
Take a moment to look at your situation from outside your emotions, we intensify what we focus on. So if you’re stressed and all you think about it how stressed you are guess what you get? More stress!
Consider this, what are you grateful for? Did you eat today? Do you have a place to stay? Are you getting some traction? Are you still alive to change your situation?
This doesn’t mean stop looking for a job, it means stop focusing on how you DON’T have a job. Focus on what you have & you’ll have more.
5. COUNTER the worst-case scenario immediately
If you never got a job; what would you do?
Would you have to make your business work? Sell stuff? Reduce spending? Freelance or consulting work? Drive with Uber? Borrow from your 401k? Downsize?
Consider doing immediately whatever you would do in the ‘worst-case scenario.’ This helps to counter your fears because you’re actively reducing the likelihood of experiencing that shitty situation rather than waiting on someone else to give you an opportunity.
6. Keep REFINING your approach
The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over and expect a different result.
So switch it up! Keep trying different job hunting strategies. Read some of my other articles for risqué job hunting tactics:
- 7 Hacks to Quickly Build Experience & Education for a New Career
- 9 Outdated Resume Practices Slowing Down your Job Search
- How to get Recruiters to contact you with job openings
7. Keep asking for HELP
The only thing shittier than suffering is suffering alone. Reach out to others in your situation to help them, vent your feelings, talk to Career Development Experts, be patient and push on.
Your win is coming.
Thus saith the Lord of Resumes