Here is what happens to most people in the 20 weeks following losing their job. In the first few weeks, most people experience a steady improvement in their sense of well-being. If, however, candidates haven’t found a job 10 -12 weeks into their search, the trend reverses and they start feeling rejected and depressed.
Most candidates know that finding a job is in their own hands but so is their mental health. Many Jobseekers lose sight of how mental health is directly linked to your ability to push ahead with your job search.
Remaining jobless and not finding work takes a toll on self-esteem and overall mental health no matter how tough you are. Networking and going on informational interviews is horribly tough when you’re feeling low, but will pay off in self-esteem, and ultimately in your ability to land a job.
So learn to PAUSE
In my experience as both an employed and unemployed job-seeker, I learned that it is important to create Pause periods to refuel before I return to the search. When I return to my job search task, I recharge using the GO LIKE HELL method to ensure that I do not hit another low again. I also go hard to ensure that I feel good about myself at the end of the day. So Pause and GO LIKE HELL are both reward tools in my job-seeker toolkit.
The PAUSE section of the blog also offers creative ideas, tips and solutions to keep your financial situation “in good health” and to have some fun along the way.
Now before I rattle off my blog posts with numerous tips and tricks, let’s spend one more minute to take a closer look at what I am trying to convey.
Have you ever noticed that when you stop looking for something, you find it? Your keys, your pin number, your cell-phone, the elusive shopping-list item at your local grocer, or even the love of your life. They often seemingly appear out of nowhere at the moment you stop the search itself.
Of course, this applies to the job search as well, for both employed and unemployed Job-Seekers.
I love dancing. There’s a familiar saying that goes, “Dance like no one is watching and sing like no one is listening.” Most people are fairly confident when they don’t perceive that an audience is judging them. This confidence is quite attractive to hiring managers as well. You should use this mentality for your job search (or non-job search, if you will) by remembering a few suggestions:
- Let your next job find you. Do your best and try to be the best at what you do. Let your reputation bring hiring managers looking for people with unique talent directly to you.
- Play hard-to-get by being nonchalant about job offers that do come your way. Soon you’ll be seen as a challenge, and the competition to hire you will heat up.
- Agree to interviews before you need a job. This puts you in a much better position and it increases your attractiveness.
- Use the power of your gadgets and social media to organically trumpet your value. If you leverage it well and with a sense of humility and genuineness, your network of contacts will actually do the marketing work for you.
- Volunteer. I know, I keep repeating myself, but here in Australia and New Zealand, community work and volunteering is big. This tip is a “regular” in my job-seeker strategy blog posts, and with good reason. I know that if you volunteer strategically, where influencers and decision-makers in your career arena assemble, signals and help will come your way!Just joining any team of volunteers is not enough! You need to provide extraordinary commitment and value to whatever club or organization you choose. Offer to chair or participate on a committee that showcases your industry or job expertise, and then simply “do what you do, and do it well.” You’ll naturally get known versus having to over sell yourself.
- Offer to help small and/or up-and-coming business owners. Research your localised letter drop or business journals and any other news resources reporting on small businesses that are expanding their operations. Reach out before the hiring begins. Either through contacts or directly. Just reach out! Articulate your unique solutions to help them cultivate their new shoots of growth.Are you a masterful salesperson? Explain how you can assist during their first 90 days of operation at their new branch. Tell them how you can help and take steps to help ease their transition. You are not looking for a job; you are offering a solution to ambitious but often over-committed entrepreneurs who are hungry for help.This is a hard one since many of us believe that we should charge for our services, but trust me. I have personally applied this concept many times and the offer to earn a salary came naturally once the new business operator realised the value of my work. I will write about some of my unique “in-between” jobs in some other blog posts later.
- Give yourself a break. Things have a way of working themselves out when they’re given enough room. Stressing and beating yourself up every minute will only serve to make things seem worse than they are. This will in no way improve your chance at success.
- Give up looking for a job entirely. Take a break from any and all activities related to your job search. You don’t have to spend your savings on a trip to Bali or a Cruise on the QE2. I am talking about a PAUSE. Two to five days is enough. The perspectives you gain during this time will more than make up for any perceived time loss.
Take a step back and breathe deeply. The job search battle is yours to win or lose. Exuding confidence is the surest way to help win this important battle.
You need to be resilient and maintain a positive attitude. This will be your key during times of career disappointments or personal hardships. Even if you feel anxious, angry, sad or stressed by the job search process, you need to push your boundaries, control your emotions and stay constructive. And, sometimes you just need to PAUSE from your search to relax, reenergize, and then start fresh.
This is just the start. I will post many more suggestions and tips in future blog posts, so please ….
If you have any good comments and suggestions, tips and ideas feel free to share them with me and the readership of TDJS.
Hunt wisely, Uli