A prolonged, long-term job search is likely to follow a stressful and uncertain time, such as being made redundant.
After working hard on polishing your CV, submitting more job applications than you care to remember and completing numerous job interviews, you still haven’t secured a role, and it’s starting to really get you down.
If you find yourself in this situation, don’t worry. I’m here to support you.
In this blog, I’ve pulled together some practical steps you can take to help keep yourself motivated and resilient during this challenging period of your career.
1. Be productive every day
When self-confidence is low, and there’s no sign of success on the horizon, it’s easy to become apathetic and lose motivation.
Spending too much time watching on-demand TV isn’t going to help you secure your next big role. You need to keep your head in the game! On the flip side, spending 8 hours a day job hunting might not be feasible and will soon feel incredibly monotonous. But everything you do should contribute in some way to your overall goals.
You’ve entered a new chapter in your life, and while this may feel daunting, it’s also an opportunity to assess what you DO and DO NOT want from your career in the future. Once you gain this clarity, rather than focusing on the QUANTITY of roles you’re applying for, carefully consider the QUALITY of the roles you’re going for and whether these realistically match where you see your career heading.
An excellent way to remain focused is to create daily goals and stick to them. This could be learning more about your chosen industries or roles, connecting with companies via LinkedIn, or setting yourself a plan for the number of positions you’ll apply for.
Also, think about including some fresh air and exercise into your daily routine to help keep you alert and healthy.
2. Get out there
If you live by yourself or your partner works outside of the home, it’s easy to become isolated and lose connection to what’s happening outside of your four walls.
There are plenty of opportunities to interact and gain valuable skills to add to your CV though. Find online or in-person networking events in your area, volunteer, or find courses to boost your knowledge or learn more about careers in emerging sectors.
Here are a few places you can visit to find out more about free courses:
3. Look after yourself
At the end of a long day of job hunting, getting some physical exercise might feel like the last thing you want to do but being active releases chemicals in the brain that make us feel good, boost our self-esteem, and help with concentration and sleep.
You don’t have to sign up for an expensive gym or start training for a marathon. There are plenty of simple activities which can help and don’t have to break the bank. For example, gardening, walking, jogging, swimming, or yoga.
Find time to do other things you enjoy, such as reading, listening to music, hobbies or socialising. It’s easy to become a little blinkered when you’re in the middle of a job search, but other activities can help take your mind off it and give your brain something else to focus on.
4. Look for wins
Being out of the workplace for an extended period and losing our sense of purpose and achievement can significantly affect our self-esteem. It becomes easier to focus on the negative aspects of our unemployment and our perceived failures. If you feel like this is beginning to happen, try to focus on small accomplishments.
It could be achieving more than you planned to, being called for an interview, or gaining a new skill to include on your CV. Once you alter your mindset to look for the positives, you should begin to see an uplift in your mood and confidence.
5. Use your support system
During your long-term job search, you may find that you need different types of support at different times, including emotional support, financial support and career development support. Build your support network during this time, including friends, family, old colleagues and online networks. You don’t have to go through this alone.
I have several blogs focussing on different areas of securing a new role, including ‘using networking to secure your next role’, ‘interview questions made easier – the STAR Technique’ and ‘how to create an eye-catching CV’ which you may find helpful.
You can take a look here: https://vidacoaching.co.uk/blog/
If you also find yourself in a challenging position financially, don’t forget to check what benefits and entitlements you may be eligible for. The Citizens Advice website is a great place to start with this: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/
If you need more support with your long-term job search, don’t struggle alone!
Contact me to arrange a free discovery call to find out how I can help you.