Staying motivated in your job search

Career Advice
20 December 2016 | Career Advice | Guest Author

Finding a job after graduating can be tough in these hard economic times and the rejections can get you down. Charlotte Oxenham investigates how to stay focused and positive in your search for a graduate job.

  • Develop a routine

Applying for even one job can be a time-consuming process - filling out application forms, tailoring your CV and writing a cover letter – and several of these in one session can leave you feeling drained and unwilling to do anymore for some days. Space it out - set aside some time each day, perhaps an hour, exclusively for job hunting and focus yourself upon this task without procrastinating, you have the rest of the day to check Facebook and surf the web. Be realistic and remember why you’re doing this.

  • Be organised

Keep track of what CV and covering letter you used for what job and keep a note of that job’s description. Some find it useful to keep a spreadsheet of all the jobs they’ve applied for – the date, the company, contacts, deadlines etc., as well as how far along in the process you are.

  • Think about volunteering

If you’ve been out of work for a while, the days can turn into a meaningless blur which saps at your self-esteem and motivation. Doing some volunteer work can be a huge boost to your self-esteem and looks great on your CV, showing you’re motivated and pro-active.

  • Look after yourself

Exercise and eat healthily. This might sound like tired and obvious advice but for those who are unemployed it can be a challenge to even get up in the mornings. Prepare yourself for those working hours now and set two or three alarms to ensure you get up well before noon. Go for a run or do any kind of vigorous activity for 30 minutes which will release endorphins and lift your mood as well as help to keep you fit. Try to eat your five a day, it’s good for you and will help you get all the nutrients you need to keep you going. Drink lots of water. Dehydration can make you feel tired and lethargic. Staying hydrated will help you feel better and is good for your skin, helping you look better for those interviews.

  • Don’t let rejection get you down

Rejection after rejection can be disheartening but try not to take it too personally. There may be many reasons why it didn’t happen and it is important to ask for feedback so you can take this information and use it to move forward all the wiser. Learn from the mistakes you’ve made and aim to do better next time. It’s okay to feel disappointed at not getting the job, you’re only human after all, but the key to success is to pick yourself up and keep on trying.

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