It’s very easy to feel negative about finding work during the Coronavirus pandemic, with record redundancies and a cut in the number of jobs available in all areas of the UK. However there is a light at the end of the tunnel: the discovery of multiple vaccines now means the world will slowly start to return to life as we knew it and with the UK being one of the first nations to deploy the BioNtech/Pfizer vaccine it means that the UK may just be the one that leads this global change.
So the end is almost in sight, but that doesn’t mean that we should just wait for things to get better. Here are some of the ways you can change your outlook on job seeking right now and what you may just learn about yourself in the process.
1. Learning resilience
In the current market it is imperative to remain resilient and it is only by continuing your job seeking efforts that you will find this within yourself. Resilience in the face of difficulty is one of the most important characteristics a person can have. Practising this characteristic in your job seeking will help you learn how to deal with challenges in a more positive way. Here are some methods you can use to become more resilient within your job seeking:
Your struggle is valid
Understanding what it is that makes you stressed and not being ashamed of that is very important, whether this is in job seeking or something else entirely.
You’re tougher than you think
A lot of job seeking is about managing to stay on track and keep going. There will have been other difficult periods in your life when you will have had to show similar traits of resilience. Look back and think about how you got through these times and try to apply the same methods to your job seeking.
Know your strengths
Think about the strengths that you do possess. Some people will be natural interviewers, others will be excellent at showcasing their CV. Use your strengths to your advantage and think about how to approach your weaknesses. For example if you struggle with CV writing, use CV builders to help you or follow advice and guidance from people who are strong CV writers.
No matter what adversity you face, seeking the support of others is crucial, whether this is having a simple conversation with someone about what it is you’re dealing with or asking for advice. You never know, their strength could complement your weakness.
Overall when you do find a job, it’s a certainty that you will have points where you’re stuck or at a crossroads, if you learn to deal with these difficulties during your job seeking journey you will recognise this when you face problems at work. Essentially you are learning not to give up and for many this will not only be beneficial for you in work, but also in life.
For more tips on becoming resilient, see this article and interview by Meg Jay: https://ideas.ted.com/8-tips-to-help-you-become-more-resilient/
“I have not failed I have just found 10,000 ways that it will not work”Thomas Edison
2. Focus your energy on the things you can control
Always remember that there is only so much that is realistically in your control. You cannot control how many applicants there will be for a job you love the sound of, you cannot change your past work experiences and you cannot control the minds of the people looking at your CV or interviewing you. You are human and having the ability to recognise the things that are in your power and the things that aren’t will put you in the driving seat.
What you can influence in your job search
You may want to create a list of the things that you can influence, for example:
- How your CV comes across
- How you come across in an interview and how to improve
- Your career direction
- Using your online presence to your advantage, see here.
- Which skills you want to develop
There are a host of things within your control and there are an infinite number of things that aren’t. Knowing this will help you re-prioritise your goals, ambitions and the way you approach job seeking.
3. Changing your Mindset
We all understand that job seeking can be stressful at the best of times and the pandemic will only add to this. One of the most important things you can also do during this time is look after your mental wellbeing whilst trying to find work.
The above points only realistically work if you are in a sound frame of mind:, chronic stress does not benefit anyone. Some great tips for changing your mindset are below:
Change your attitude to failure
If you take each failure as a sign that you are not performing, your confidence and your ability to stay positive will slowly diminish. Instead think about what each unsuccessful application has taught you, never be scared to ask for feedback and use these experiences to help you to grow and keep going
Take a break
Taking a break may seem counterproductive at times but having a break can reset your mind on the task at hand and help you come back to the problem from a different angle. If you find yourself getting stressed, watch a film, take a walk outside or talk with a friend. All these things will take your mind off the workload and it will give you a fresh perspective when you do return.
If you can avoid anything, avoid looking desperate: like a single person looking for a relationship, it will only take you farther away from what you seek. No matter your situation, being able to let go of any stressful or overwhelming emotions during an interview is key. You want to show the version of yourself that your potential employers want to see, the version of yourself that they read in your CV/application form that got you there in the first place. When you are being interviewed, portraying a confident persona of someone who may have been out of work for a while but has kept on top of life and job seeking shows you are capable and have options for your future. It tells them that you can walk out that door and have a handful of opportunities in front of you, which will only make you more desirable.
Thoughts to leave with
Overall if you approach your job seeking as a journey rather than something that has a beginning and an end you will see yourself learn and develop. Yes, the Coronavirus pandemic and the current economic climate go against you but changing your mindset on how to approach these barriers will only make you more resourceful against other external factors in the future. Remember to be proactive and to keep going, you will find a job eventually if you learn from your failures rather than let them get you down. Remember to focus your efforts on what is in your control, this is key as it will keep your priorities in order helping you stay on track. Finally stay mindful and take care of yourself – stress doesn’t help anyone, it doesn’t help the people around you and it certainly doesn’t help you. I hope by taking these qualities on board you can change your outlook on your job seeking journey. You never know, maybe you’ll be the one writing about advice and guidance in the future if I’ve done my job correctly!