5 Self Improvement Tips That Will Help You Prioritize Your Job Search
Job hunting is very taxing, especially if you are not well prepared for it. Read below to learn how you can improve in your job search and be a better version of yourself to achieve your career goals.
Job Searching: Are you doing it right?
Job searching is not just about browsing online job-hunting websites, submitting your resumè, and waiting for calls or emails. At this age, competition is getting tougher, companies are stricter in terms of hiring the right candidate, and of course, the availability of jobs in the market will always be a challenge.
How will you know if you are doing it right, then? There is no concrete answer, but try to follow our tips below to get that dream job you are yearning for.
1. Prioritize self-care
Based on a recent CareerBuilder survey, “69% of people report feeling highly stressed when trying to find a new job”. This number is expected to rise in 2021, given that massive lay-offs due to the pandemic pressured a lot of people in finding new means to earn for a living. Add to the fact that most people are also experiencing mental health and emotional issues for the same reason just adds up to the pressure more. This is why self-care is very crucial.
What do you need to consider in order to promote self-care? Here are some ideas:
- Take care of your body – think of your body as a sacred temple; it must be taken care of by promoting a healthy lifestyle; getting sufficient sleep, eating right, and doing regular workouts are just some ways to achieve ultimate care of your body. This is not just beneficial for your job search, it will also reward you with long-lasting benefits.
- Feed your mind – mental care is of utmost importance too. You can take care of your mind by reading relevant literature like personal development blogs or self-improvement books, watching informative shows, exploring new hobbies, or simply discussing healthy ideas with other persons. As they say, knowledge is power.
- Nurture your soul – most people forget this step, but this is very important too; relaxation, going somewhere calm and peaceful, and meditation are some forms of nurturing one’s soul. Regardless of one’s religion, revalidating your faith also contributes to the overall state of our souls.
2. Up your skills
If there is one thing that would give you an edge in terms of getting noticed by employers, upping your skills certainly would top the list. Widening your knowledge will not only make you more capable, it is also a good investment in yourself. Read down further for ways on how to to achieve this.
- Take online training – On-demand online courses such as udemy.com are available 24/7. Some universities also offer distance learning with varying topics and expertise. While there are tons of free training available, a lot of paid ones are also worth it, and might just give you the edge over other candidates.
- Enroll in short vocational or technical courses – programs that offer technical education is very popular nowadays, and with good reason too. As more and more employers ride the wave of technological advancement, being up-to-date with the latest technology will have its advantages once you are already onboard. You will be able to learn tools quicker, be able to automate tasks, among others.
- Go back to school under post-graduate studies – this may seem a bit daunting but attaining a post-graduate diploma is actually very beneficial to you and your resumè. You can actually take one while doing a full-time job, too.
3. Be proactive, not reactive
They say that believing and claiming that something good will happen to you will attract good karma. While this may be true, actions are definitely required on your end for this to happen. Being proactive means you have to make things happen your way by doing something about it. Here are some tips on how to be proactive in your job search.
- Build your career network – Establishing one’s so-called “work network” does not only apply in a workplace setting. This is particularly helpful too when you are out looking in the job market. For example, a previous colleague who knows a hiring personnel in your target company can provide you a referral. Another good example is when you need a character reference – these people inside your career network would be the best people to do so. This network will also be a very reliable source of information when you want to know which companies are hiring, which ones offer the best compensation, which ones cause employees burnout, etc.
- List down your target employers and do research – By identifying which ones you are eyeing to apply to, you are making it easier to do your diligence of researching these companies by trimming them down to a list. Once identified, you can write down the known pros and cons for each, as well as the reasons why they made your list. It is also important to know the company background, mission and vision, and other public information that may deem useful once you get the coveted interview.
- Connect with the hiring managers – behind every hiring company is a hiring manager or recruiter. It is acceptable to connect with them (LinkedIn and other social media platforms are recommended tools), introduce yourself shortly, and inform them should they have a need for someone with your skill set, you are available to discuss.
- Reach out to existing employees – while some may see this action as inappropriate, it actually is beneficial to know who are the people who may become your potential colleagues. You may go right ahead and introduce yourself and ask for advice. Note, though, that it may not be a good idea to ask for help. People tend to respond better when they feel they are not being used.
4. Set your goals in the right direction
In setting your goals, one must be realistic but at the same time ambitious. It could be an overwhelming task since your priorities might change every now and then. What is important is that your goals set are aligned with your overall objectives in life.
Goal-setting helps your job search to become more systematic and organized. Below, you will find the S.M.A.R.T guide in building your self-improvement goals.
- Specific – your targets should be simple, specific, and sensible. Creating vague goals will not only cause confusion but might also sway you from your original targets.
- Measurable – in setting your goals, you need to have a form of quantitative measure in order to assess if you are on the right track. This measurement will be the proof or evidence that you are succeeding in your targets. An example would be: you wish to become a virtual assistant (VA). Then your measure of progress can be the number of interviews you’ve garnered for a VA position.
- Attainable – create targets that are reasonable and achievable as it will help you stay focused on your end-goal. How so? It gives you an idea which ones are within your reach at the moment, and which ones need additional steps to attain. For example, you wish to become a VA which creates graphic contents. Your current qualification is only for the VA role, but you still lack skills to become a graphic designer. Therefore, you will act on this gap by studying graphics design, etc.
- Relevant – in order to ensure that your goals are relevant, you must align them with your main goal in life. Each of these targets must have a role in achieving your personal growth. An example would be you want to establish yourself as an esteemed VA. Therefore, one of your targets set would be to take up a VA course that would help you become one.
- Time-based – every goal set must have a schedule or deadline. This way, you know you are not just wasting time on setting far-fetched goals. Such an example would be to take up a VA course within the next six months.
Always keep in mind that maintaining S.M.A.R.T goals during your job search will provide you a sense of direction and lead you to success.
5. Learn To Take A Break
This last tip is often forgotten, when one’s frustration and loss of motivation get in the way. People actually misunderstand taking a break as slacking off. Most, if not all, tend to forget that we, as humans, need to rest and recharge too in whatever we are doing. This also applies during job searching.
While it is understandable to develop anxiety and even depression when you get rejected multiple times, remember that it is ok to step back, take a break, and even find a new hobby, before trying again. This will give you a new perspective on what you may have done incorrectly, and take them as lessons learned. Taking a break also allows you to purge your negative thoughts and be your best self again.
In a nutshell, nurturing every aspect of your life will be the best preparation in order to achieve your career goals. After all, your job will define your future. That is why it is very important to make the right choices so you will not have any regrets.