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Staying Motivated While Finding Your Job

by Greg Latimer

Looking for work can and should feel a bit like a job. However, it is an unpaid position with no set schedule, no guaranteed rewards, no apparent co-workers, and it is a marketing and sales position where some level of rejection is a given. It is a position we generally try to avoid, one we all find ourselves in at some point, and one where the better we are at it, the faster we get out of it. Maintaining motivation and a positive attitude throughout the job search can be a challenge, so understanding what aspects of job searching can drain our motivation and working through them will help keep our spirits up.

When you first begin job searching, you don’t have a schedule or plan. The constant accessibility of the internet, ongoing job searching opportunities and lack of a schedule can make you feel like you should be constantly job searching. You shouldn’t be. Establishing expectations, a schedule and a step-by-step plan will give you a sense of structure, allow you to acknowledge your hard work and let you more fully enjoy time spent away from your job search without guilt.

People are social creatures by nature and socializing is an important and rewarding part of an effective job search schedule. Networking helps you find jobs that are not formally advertised, access valuable information and support from others, and get away from applying to popular job postings on the computer. As marketing and selling your skills and experience in a social setting may not come easily, you may find keeping an open mind on the variety of jobs available, reflecting on what you have to offer, researching employer needs, talking to others about opportunities and practicing your pitch will make it easier. Our employment programs at Lutherwood provide free help with these and other aspects of job searching.

When you apply to a job or even complete an interview, it is quite common to be ignored or rejected. To protect your confidence and motivation, be careful about how you interpret this response. Being passed over for a job does not mean you do not have valuable skills; it just means that for that particular position at that particular company, you were not considered to be the best candidate this time.

With a healthy perspective, a good plan and some help from others, you will find the motivation you need to find the right job for you.