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Are you in the job market right now? Is it taking longer than you want? Do you find yourself getting frustrated, depressed, anxious, and fearful that you’ll never find a good job, or maybe even a little bit angry at the circumstances in which you find yourself? If so, you aren’t alone. But, knowing that you aren’t “alone” in your frustration, while somewhat comforting for many, isn’t very helpful in landing a new job that will pay the mortgage.
Unfortunately, once you’ve reached this stage of your search, all of the frustration, fears, and doubts become self-perpetuating as your negative thoughts manifest even more of the same, and the success (or non-success) of your job search lives up to exactly what your expectations are for it. Before you know it, your unsuccessful job search has begun to impact your self-esteem, your energy for finding the perfect new job wanes, and your job search stalls out.
How do you jumpstart a job search that has stagnated in this way? How do you prevent the problem in the first place?
It all begins with a purposeful change of your mindset, an acknowledgment that you absolutely know the perfect job for you is out there waiting for you, and a decision that you will do whatever it takes to find and land that job.
“Easier said than done” is what you are probably thinking right now. But, the truth is, it doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are a few tips to restart positive forward momentum in a languishing job search.
Check and adjust your attitude about job searching. Don’t underestimate the importance of a positive attitude in your search and don’t forget that you always have a choice in how you perceive and think about the circumstances of your life. When you find yourself thinking negatively about your job search, you can consciously choose to change those thoughts to more positive ones. You might, for example, choose to adopt a “failure is not an option” attitude and to approach finding a job as if it were a job itself. Yes, job searching is a process and often takes time, but a “can-do” attitude that radiates self-confidence is an attitude that people will respond to in a positive way. A positive attitude will make it more likely that you’ll receive the support and help of others, it will help you get noticed by employers, and it will almost always win you the job offer over another candidate with a less-than positive attitude.
Stop with the excuses! You know the ones: “My job search will take a really long time.” “Finding a new job will be really hard.” “I don’t deserve the job I truly want.” “I don’t have enough help and support.” “I’m not smart enough or qualified enough.” Do you find that the constant chatter running through your head tears you down or builds you up? Does this pessimism help you or hurt you? How would your job search change if you adopted a more optimistic mindset? Yes, a job search will sometimes take time and persistence, but is that a good excuse not to take the first step (and the second and third)? Of course it isn’t. Maybe you don’t have every single “desired” qualification for a position, but you know you have another transferable skill, the ability to quickly develop the qualification, and a real ability to contribute to the company. Again, you truly do have a choice. All it takes is a decision to stop the negative self-talk. When you catch yourself making your job search harder with these excuses, stop yourself and turn the excuses into a positive affirmation.
Think from the end and imagine yourself arriving at your end goal, not striving for it. When you land the perfect position, what will it be like? What type and size of company is it in? What is the company culture like? What are your responsibilities and what opportunities do you have to make a contribution to your employer? How much are you paid for your contributions? What are the employer-sponsored benefits like? How does it feel to be in this position that is so fulfilling and rewarding to you? Daydreaming about the perfect position and imagining that you have already landed it and are working in it isn’t a pointless exercise. Your mind is a creator and by adopting this mindset in which you think from the end, as if your goal is already your reality, you open yourself up to the possibilities and the synchronicities that will support you in arriving at that end goal.
Will your job search end when you land the perfect job tomorrow? Maybe…maybe not. But, a simple and conscious shift in the mindset that you choose to adopt can make all the difference. You truly do have a choice. A negative attitude and mindset will make your job searcher harder and longer. A positive attitude and mindset will make your job search easier and more successful. Which will you choose?
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