How To Stay Motivated In Your Job Search

The job market is tough, and getting through a job search is even tougher. It’s disheartening to constantly get passed over for a job, particularly if you feel like you’re sending out resume after resume without ever getting a phone call or email for an interview.

However, it’s important to keep your motivation up during a job search and your mind ready for when the right opportunity comes along. Stay productive and engaged, and when your next job comes calling, you’ll be ready.

Treat the Search Like It’s Your Job

It’s so easy to fall into the rut of being at home all day long – you never change out of your pajamas or shower, get addicted to daytime talk shows and all of a sudden, it’s mid-afternoon and you haven’t done anything productive yet. Your next job won’t be so easy!

So, don’t let this happen during your job search – establish a routine that starts by getting up around the same time you’d awaken for a daytime job, showering and changing into fresh clothing. You don’t have to don a suit to spend time at home, but you should be presentable in case you need to run out the door.

Schedule yourself throughout the day – one or two hours dedicated to scouring the Internet for fresh listings, time for cleaning up around the house and a lunch meeting with a friend or former colleague. When it comes to get back into a routine for your next job, you’ll be ready.

Set a Weekly Target

Aim for a set number of jobs that you apply for each week. Although the number will vary based on the industry of your job search, making sure you hit a number each day or each week will stop you from becoming blasé or rationalizing why a position couldn’t possibly be your next job.

Do Volunteer Work

Just because you’re unemployed doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continue to contribute to society during your job search. Committing to a cause is something you can put on your resume that shows the boss are your next job that you’re engaged in your committee and willing to do work; plus, it keeps you busy so you don’t think about the lack of a paycheck coming in right now. Find a cause that’s important to you, whether it’s walking dogs at the SPCA or working with patients at the children’s hospital, and spend a few hours a week there.

Continue to Learn

You’re never too old to learn. If you’re looking to switch industries for your next job or if you just want to keep your mind fresh, look at auditing a college course or taking a class online. You can brush up on your technical skills or learn a new language.

Be Realistic

Waiting weeks or months for your next job to come by can truly be demotivating. However, in a downtrodden economy, jobs don’t materialize out of nowhere. It can take up to one month to find a job for every $15,000 you want in salary; therefore, someone searching for a $60,000 job can expect to hunt for about four months before something works out. Of course, you might break the mold and find your next job sooner – but maintain expectations.

Don’t Despair

According to RealMatch, corporate managers will often post a job ad just to satisfy the need to bring in an outside candidate. They have an internal candidate for the job, but they’re doing this to satisfy corporate policy. It has nothing to do with you, but you’re chances of getting the job in this situation are very remote.

Take Time Off

You wouldn’t spend seven days a week working, so why would you spend that much time searching for your next job? Take the weekends off, just like you would from work, to let yourself relax and recharge your batteries.
In short, keep your mindset akin to that of someone who is employed: Engaged, focused but gives himself a couple of days off a week. You never know when your next job will appear – be ready for it.

About Author: Kimberley Laws is a former high school teacher and career counsellor who enjoys freelance writing and blogging. You can follow her at The Embiggens Project.

Kimberley Laws

Kimberley Laws is a freelance writer, avid blogger, and owner of several pairs of animal slippers. You can follow her at The Embiggens Project, Pinterest, Facebook, and Google+.

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