Being in the market for a job can be challenging, frustrating, exciting and crazy all at the same time. We all know that networking is the #1, most successful way to find a job – the right job. Yet, despite this fact, we ALL read job postings? Why?
Because it is EASIER to apply for a job online and submit a resume then to define your career goals, create a target job list, network with those companies and GO AFTER the job you want.
We follow the easy route even though it is statistically proven to be the most unsuccessful route. I believe this is psychological – we want to feel like we are doing something and therefore, we are REACTING instead of ACTING.
When we are job searching, our self-confidence tends to wane. That is partly why we react instead of act. Put yourself back in the driver’s seat. First, focus on building your self-confidence. BEFORE and WHILE searching for a job, affirm your self-confidence.
Step 1: BUILD YOUR SELF CONFIDENCE
1. Healthy Mind – Healthy Body
Find mental balance through exercise, a nutritionally balanced diet and sleep. Studies upon studies support the theory that being physically and mentally healthy improves self-confidence. If you feel good about yourself physically, you feel good mentally. And positive mental health directly correlates to positive self-confidence. Keeping physically fit means keeping mentally fit as well.
2. Healthy Emotions – Healthy Mind
Being emotionally fit improves your self-confidence because you are limiting the amount of stress that impacts your mind and your body. A commonly accepted definition of stress is that it occurs when a person perceives that “demands exceed the personal and social resources the individual is able to mobilize.”
Stress occurs when people feel threatened by a situation. These individuals believe they are incapable of dealing with the particular stress. The amount of stress depends on the amount of damage people believe the situation can incur. Intense stress can cause unhappiness and undermine your self-confidence.
Keep a journal to document your feelings, analyze your thoughts and record your progress. If you do not like to write, talk about how you are feeling. At night, before closing your eyes, allocate five minutes for analyzing your day, highlighting the ups and downs. When you identify stressful situations, you can figure out how better to deal with them. For example, if the stress is between you and a loved one, find ways to communicate with this person, rather than bottling it all up inside and letting it simmer.
3. Involve a Partner in Your Progress
It can never hurt to have a cheerleader. Your likelihood of success increases as does your self-confidence. If you falter, someone is there to pick you up
4. Value yourself regardless of your job, salary or other arbitrary measures
Who you are should not be solely dependent on how you performed at work or how you rate yourself as a careerist, parent, friend, etc. If it is, you will consistently be chipping away at your self-confidence. If the foundation of your self-worth rests solely on one thing, it may as well be built on quick sand.
Valuing yourself based on your career is a self-worth trap into which many succumb. Many people fall into this trap because their personal value is directly correlated with their income level; the higher their income, the higher their self-worth. Self-worth becomes all about dollar signs.
Your self-worth needs to be a combination of multiple factors, experiences, values and emotions. It cannot be based on money, prestige or WHAT you do.
Step 2: Go AFTER the job.
Take your time and regroup.
1. Work with a career counselor, identify and prioritize your career objectives
2. Develop a blockbuster resume – should highlight your brand and expertise, link your role to the business/industry/bottom line and answer the question “what’s in it for them”
3. Develop a target company list based on your career priorities
4. NETWORK! Network with people that work at the company or with people that KNOW people that work at the company
5. Nail the interview – practice. Don’t go in cold. Be ready. Show you are prepared and that you are the right one for the job