Tips to Stay Positive and Motivated During a Job Search
Looking for a job can be the most exciting time, as you set sail to find a new place where you can fit in and make a difference. Whether you’re unemployed, underemployed, changing careers, a recent graduate, or just getting back into the job market, searching for a new job/career can be a life-changing experience. What we do for a living to support ourselves and our families is a massive part of our well-being, and this adds stress and fear of the unknown to the process of landing a new job. This section of CareerThinker.com, “Keep Motivated,” is here to help you stay on the right track by providing advice and tips on staying motivated and confident during this change in your life. Take some time to read through this section, and we are sure that you will find something that will help keep you motivated and positive. Remember that this phase of your life is temporary and represents only part of your journey.
Job Search While You’re Unemployed
You’re the CEO of Your Own life
If you’re unemployed, you still have a full-time job with a significant title: CEO (Chief Executive Officer) of your own life. Unfortunately, too many people fall into the “why me?” phase of being unemployed, saying, why did this happen to me, why isn’t life fair, I can’t believe they did this to me, and so on. So let’s look at the figures. As of November 2021, in the USA, there are over 6.9 million people unemployed and millions more who classify themselves as being underemployed or who have dropped out of the job market. We don’t want to be harsh, but with these figures, the “why me?” phase is nothing but a waste of time. Get over it and take on the critical role of CEO of your life, getting your company in order.
Having the challenge of finding a new job while you’re unemployed and not receiving a regular paycheck can be very stressful and overwhelming. Your mind becomes filled with negative thoughts like worry, fear, self-doubt, and anxiety. Try to fight these negative thoughts, as they will only lead to more, which will destroy your job search. You need to stay motivated, positive, and optimistic and keep pushing forward while believing in yourself. This will benefit your job search and help you achieve better and faster results.
Job Search While You’re Still Employed
You’re the CIO of Your Own life
If you’re employed, looking to change your job, or underemployed, you now have two jobs. You have your current employment, and you are CIO, or “Chief Improvement Officer,” of your life. This is a huge added responsibility. You might not have the same degree of financial pressure as those who are unemployed, but you have the major challenge of balancing your existing work with the time needed for a successful job search. You need time to look for the jobs, send out resumes/cover letters, and schedule interviews, all while maintaining the responsibilities of your current position. And if your job search takes too much time, it can jeopardize your current job, which can be overwhelming and very stressful. You need to keep a positive attitude and stay motivated.
Fighting Negative Thoughts and Building Positive Thoughts
Doubt, worry, fear, looking at the glass as half-empty, doom and gloom, and focusing on what might go wrong are all examples of negative thinking. Negative thinking can impact how you take on the challenge of your job search, making it seem even longer and more stressful. When you are negative, your subconscious mind will start making excuses for not putting the needed time and effort into your job search. Your counterproductive thoughts will be apparent during an interview, and no one wants to hire someone with negative energy.
If you look at successful people, you will see a common thread: they are positive thinkers and have an optimistic outlook. We understand that it’s difficult being out of work or looking at a career change, but you need to believe in yourself and have faith that the outcome will better the quality of your life. Life never gives you more than you can handle. Positive thinking is something that you need to work on every day, which means eliminating negative thoughts and replacing them with positive ones. This doesn’t mean you ignore adverse situations; it means that you attack them more positively and productively.
A job should never define you as a person, so a lack of one shouldn’t change you. Stay positive and optimistic, and later, you will see how this experience has strengthened you.
Tips and Advice to Stay on a Positive Road
Creating a more positive road requires time and daily practice, so try to incorporate as many methods as you can to help.
- Keep a list of motivational quotes that inspire you. Read them often, even several times daily. Write them on post-it notes and stick them around your house so that you see them often.
- Learn to leave the past where it belongs – in the past. Move toward better things: a new job, new experiences, new people, and a new chapter. Dwelling in the past can lead to negative thoughts and a lack of optimism. Decide to live in the present with your eye focused on the future.
- Speak to yourself positively. Don’t feel sorry for yourself, and don’t indulge in pity parties.
- Get excited about possibilities and how they can become a reality.
- Make a list of things that you are grateful for right now in your life. We often forget to appreciate the good things that surround us.
- Look in the mirror and look your best. Every day, take care of your appearance and dress. When you look good, you feel better about yourself, which builds self-confidence.
- Eat right and stay fit. When you look good on the outside, it’s easier to feel good on the inside.
- Avoid the energy vampires. You know, the people full of drama and negativity, who drain your positive energy. Avoid these people. If they are close friends or family members, wear garlic.
- Energy is contagious, so surround yourself with positive people.
- Take note of people who overcame significant hardships and are now thriving. Have you ever seen or read a story about someone with a significant disability who defeated it against all the odds? Look on the internet for these types of stories. They will inspire you.
- Don’t get discouraged about a job you interviewed for that you did not land. Instead, think of that interview as practice that will help you get your absolute dream job. Keep a list of things you could have done differently for future interviews.
- De-clutter your surroundings and workspace. You need to carve out a space where you will perform your job search. Make sure it is neat and organized. Surround yourself with items that make you feel good, such as family photos, plants, works of art, your favorite scent, or whatever else inspires you.
- Music can have a very positive effect and dramatically change your mood. Create a playlist that makes you feel good, motivates you, and keeps you moving. Even singing can release stress, so go ahead, sing out loud to your favorite songs.
- Smile, be conscious, and make sure you are kind to everyone you come in contact with or speak with on the phone/virtually. You will be amazed at how powerful a smile is and the positive energy people will send back in your direction.
- Turn off the news and don’t read newspaper headlines. Over 80% of news media is negative, and during a job search, you have no time or need for this information. Maybe dedicate 30-mintues a day stay updated on current events. Instead of the nightly news before bed, watch your favorite sitcom.
- Get the recommended amount of sleep. A well-rested mind thinks clearer. But don’t overdo it and hibernate. Being unemployed is not a season; you can’t sleep it off.
- If you usually go to the gym, meditate, play sports, or do yoga, keep doing these things, and on the same scheudle.
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