8 Tips To Fight Job Search Anxiety and Stay Motivated

Ahsen Ghufran | March 2024

Staying positive during a particularly tough job search is easier said than done because there's only so much rejection that you can take. But there are ways to stay motivated even as you face great uncertainty. If you've been looking for a job for any period of time, you've probably become pretty accustomed to getting rejected. It almost becomes a game – what company is going to reject you the fastest or maybe in the most unique manner, or which company is just gonna flat out ghost you. But being rejected is okay; it's just part of the process. Don't be too hard on yourself; everybody experiences it, not just you.

Mind Over Matter

Therefore, staying positive in a job hunt is all the more important. Experiencing rejection after rejection can really start to hurt your confidence, and the last thing that you need in your job search is you starting to doubt whether or not you can even do the position that you once were so effective in. Really, shifting your mentality is the key. Now, I know what you're thinking – easier said than done. But I've actually been there too. I know what it's like, so how have I pressed on during times I was really starting to doubt myself? Let's talk about some of the ways that you can maintain positivity during your job hunt, especially if you're not having much success.

Take it Like a Full-Time Job

The first thing I'm going to recommend is treating your job search like a full-time position so you want to set your alarm to get up at the same time you would normally get up for a full-time position. Go through your normal routine, get breakfast, even get dressed up like you're going to work. Carve out a part of your day to focus on the job hunt and a portion for networking and then finally make sure that you have time for self-improvement. Get in the habit of ending at the same time, maybe pick 5 pm to get up from the computer and shut down things for the night. It's all about balance, spending too much time and job search is only going to lead to burnout.

Taking a Breather

The next thing I would recommend is taking your weekends off. Now, if you follow me on LinkedIn, you know I've already talked about this. But put the computer away for the weekend. Don't worry about looking for jobs because the thing is they're not going anywhere, and recruiters take the weekend off too. So you're not missing out on anything; the jobs will be waiting for you on Monday. Take that time to recharge so that when you come back on Monday you're refreshed and ready to go. Obsessing over your job hunt is never going to give you a leg up in the competition you're only going to come across as being flustered and burned out.

Master Your Mind

I'm a firm believer that your thoughts create your reality. So if you're thinking negative thoughts about yourself or starting to doubt yourself, you're going to manifest that. On the flip side, if you think positive thoughts, you start to manifest that as well. Pay close attention to your inner monologue. If you're noticing negative thought patterns or negative loops, self-doubt thinking, you're never going to find a position, you're not good enough, employers don't like you, your resume sucks – all of those things are negative thought patterns. They're not going to help you get a job. You should actually approach that very mindfully and I use that term purposefully because you want to squash those negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones I'd actually come up with a daily mantra that you repeat maybe as part of your morning routine that you're going to manifest abundance and the perfect job is going to come your way now I know it sounds hokey but try it each and every day and notice the difference.

Manage Your Expectations

I think people go into their job search thinking that they're gonna throw out ten applications, gonna get five interviews, three offers, and then they're gonna be done in one month. And that's just simply not how it is. If you apply to 100 jobs, you should expect to get 95 rejections, five interviews, and maybe one or two offers out of that. If you do the math you're really looking at a one or two percent success rate and that's perfectly normal. In fact some of the people that I've coached have actually applied to three to four hundred different positions before finally landing that perfect offer. Now of course we want to be selective in the type of role that we accept but I want you to be realistic in your job hunt. If you've only applied to a couple dozen positions you really haven't been at it long enough and sure there's always going to be that one person that gets an offer right out of the gate but that's not really common. Besides, the normal job hunt usually takes between six to nine months and could even take as long as a year so if you've only been applying for positions for a few months and not having luck. Just give it a little bit of time there's no need to get down on yourself you were hireable before and you're hirable again

Shoot the Shot 

Back in my single days I would go to a bar with a good friend of mine, he would talk to every cute girl in the bar and he got rejected almost every time. I asked him one time does it ever bother you that you get rejected so often and he told me one thing he said you gotta shoot the score. Now, don't let your mind run wild; he was just talking about getting a phone number. But that always stuck with me because it didn't matter that he got rejected 99 times. If he walked out of that bar with one phone number, he was successful in his search. The same thing goes for job hunt – you can be rejected 99 times, but if you get that one offer that's perfect for you, you still were successful in finding the job.

Develop a Thick Skin

The next thing that I'm going to suggest is you really need to develop thick skin. Rejections are going to happen; you can't let them bother you and throw you off your game. Besides, there is a degree of luck; recruiters look through so many resumes that if you're not in the right place at the right time, in a lot of cases, you're not even going to get seen. So if you get rejected for a role that you knew you were perfect for just smile and know that they're missing out on a potentially great employee and move on with your day. There's no need to get overly upset about it.

Learn From Your Failures

If you get so far along in your interviewing process and you get that rejection, it can be absolutely heartbreaking. But there's a learning opportunity there. If you didn't get feedback on why you weren't specifically selected, ask the recruiter. Tell them that you're looking to improve your interviewing skills, and that any feedback they can provide would be helpful for your future search.

Spend Time Improving Yourself

Use this time to improve a skill, maybe tighten up your hiring game, or even start a business on the side. Not only is it going to make you more marketable, but it's also going to keep you mentally sharp and engaged. Having a reason to get out of bed every morning is also going to help with your energy level. Plus, employers are going to want to know that you made the best out of a bad situation and you actually improved yourself in the process. So, be aggressive, learn a new skill, improve yourself – it's an investment in you."

Parting Words

Listen, I know it's easy to get down on yourself after a particularly difficult job search. It happens to the best of us. But you can control your outcome by taking ownership of the situation. Your attitude in the process makes a world of difference, and employers are going to take notice. Just trust that you are going to find another position and the perfect position for you. Be patient and prepare yourself to take advantage when that opportunity presents itself. If you need more help with your job search, you can try JoyJobs.ai. The company is built upon helping people find joy in their job search. Not only does the website make it easier for you to land those interviews, it also helps you connect with opportunities you are passionate about. They have three AI-powered software solutions namely, CareerAI, ResumeAI, and CoverLetterAI, that you can use to find the perfect job while staying clear of all anxiety and depression.

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