Job-hunting. It’s not for the faint of heart. In fact, even the most determined, optimistic and thick-skinned job seekers get discouraged at times. Phyllis Mufson
, career consultant and life coach knows the drill.
“You procrastinate, and you tell yourself: you’re too old, too lazy, too broke or too inexperienced. You tell yourself, I’m not ready, no one will hire me, it’s too risky, too hard, not the right time, and on, and on, and on. Before your know it, you’re at an impasse.”
But don’t lose heart! You can get back on track and you will get a job! Here are some tips to help make it happen.
1. Get dressed!
First things first, lose the pajamas! Sure they’re cozy, but they aren’t helping your job search slump.
“Even though it may seem silly to put in the effort when no one is going to see you, it will make you feel better to get into a routine of feeling put-together,” says Hannah Baker of The Muse. So, take a shower and put on an outfit that makes you feel confident. Now, turn off the TV, grab your computer and take your job hunt to a local coffee shop or library. A change of scenery and some human contact—even if it’s limited to asking the barista to make you a triple venti soy no-foam latte—can be immensely restorative.
2. Start small
Don’t try to conquer the whole labour market in one day. Take your re-charged job search one step at a time to avoid becoming overwhelmed. Instead, set small goals, suggest the experts at PsychPros. “Remain optimistic by creating a daily to-do list filled with tasks that will get you one step closer to your dream job. At the end of the day, you can review the items you completed and feel proud of the progress you’ve made. Even little achievements should be celebrated, as they’re a move in the right direction!”
3. Use your contacts
Sometimes it really is all about whom you know. So, even if you’re not raring to go, commit to attending at least one networking event a week. And don’t be afraid to call former colleagues, employers, friends, or friends of friends in your industry. Having an acquaintance walk your resume over to the hiring manager at her office surely can’t hurt.
“Thoughtful networking provides a focused way to talk to people about your job search. Done right, it can help you obtain leads, referrals, advice, information and support,” says Linda Wiener for Monster.
4. Reach out for support
Job-hunting can be disheartening and lonely. But it doesn’t have to be.
“If you can find a group of friends, an online forum, or a Facebook group where everyone is also looking for a job, that can help you maintain your focus,” says Kelly Smith of CareerCloud. “Exchanging tips with others, offering encouragement, and celebrating each other’s successes will create a support system you love to turn to,” says Smith.
5. Blog about your field
Sometimes a long job search can take a toll on your self-confidence. Don’t let the fact that you’re currently unemployed make you question your expertise. Share all your experience and knowledge by writing a “niche blog,” suggests Smith.
“Keeping a blog will engage your passion and career ambitions. It also has the added benefit of boosting your presence in search engines, leaving something behind for potential employers to look at.”
6. Get off the Internet
No, not altogether. In fact, “social media has become an almost universally adopted hiring tool, with 92 percent of recruiters surveyed using it as part of their process,” writes Kimberlee Morrison for AdWeek. Additionally, 24.5 percent of job seekers polled by Jobboarders 2015 Source of Employment Survey say they scored their last job by “responding to an ad posted on a commercial job board.”
But sometimes having someone pulling strings can do wonders! Consider supplementing your online job search by working with a staffing agency. Recruiters have the inside scoop on job openings, are on first name bases with hiring managers and are truly invested in getting you a job that matches your interests and career goals.
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