1. Visualise job search success.
Create a picture in your mind of your desired job outcome. Visualise yourself working at your dream job and thinking that all the effort you put into finding it finally paid off. The more you focus on the end result, the better prepared you’ll be to tolerate the difficulties you face in getting there.
2. Set tangible goals.
Create job search goals that are concrete and directly tied to job search success. For instance, write down a list of tasks that will help you get the job you want (e.g., research employers online, contact your network, schedule informational interviews, register with a staffing service, expand your network, etc.).
3. Treat your job search like a full-time job.
The more serious you are about your job search, the better your results will be. Establish a daily routine that simulates a work day. Get up early, shower and dress so you feel both positive and productive. Create a game plan for the day and tackle your highest priority tasks first. Before you end your job-hunting day, plan out the next.
4. Find a job search partner.
If you want to get in shape, it helps to have a buddy who can motivate you. The same holds true for your job search. Whether the person is a friend, family member or fellow job seeker, having someone to whom you’re accountable, and with whom you can share your ups and downs, can be a tremendous source of motivation.
5. Register with a staffing service.
A staffing service can be a great source of motivation, income and opportunities during your job search. By working with a staffing service you can: keep your skills sharp and gain new ones; avoid gaps on your CV; access the “hidden job market”; and get your foot in the door with potential employers.
6. Find ways to stay current.
Keep yourself and your skills on the cutting edge in your chosen field by finding ways to stay involved. Volunteer, work as an intern, take classes, teach yourself a new skill or consider freelance work. While it’s important to continue with your job search efforts, staying current and involved will help maintain your confidence, motivation and enthusiasm during your job search. As an added benefit, you may make new contacts or use your experiences to build your CV.
7. Don’t dwell on your mistakes.
Finish each day and be done with it. If you make a mistake during an interview, or don’t get the call back that you’re hoping for, learn what you can from the experience and move on. Tomorrow is another day to make new contacts and uncover new opportunities.
8. Manage your stress levels.
While moderate levels of stress can be motivating, it’s easy for financial and emotional stress to overwhelm you during your job search. Keep stress levels at healthy levels by exercising, eating right, getting plenty of rest and – yes – taking time-off for a little fun. Allow yourself to laugh, enjoy hobbies and meet with friends. By maintaining a healthy balance you can keep functioning at peak efficiency.
9. Find opportunities to help others.
If you come across a job opening that would be perfect for a friend, pass along the information. If you meet someone whose CV you could forward to one of your contacts, offer to do it. Networking is a cycle, so be generous with your time, energy and participation in helping others. A small favour you do for someone else may ultimately help you in the future.
10. Try not to take rejection personally.
No matter what job you apply for these days, you will be competing with job seekers who are equally as qualified as you – perhaps even better qualified. Instead of viewing this as an excuse to admit defeat, use it as a source of motivation. The trick to looking for a new job is not to take application rejection personally. Recruiters and employers often have a very specific idea of the ideal candidate in mind, and it may only be a small detail that keeps you from making the short list. When possible, try to get specific feedback as to why your job application was unsuccessful. Identify the areas where your application, résumé or skill set is weak and use them as a starting point for making yourself more employable.