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How to Keep Your Spirits Up During a Job Search

How to Keep Your Spirits Up During a Job Search

By Pat Mayfield

If you're having a difficult time finding a job, and it seems like it's taking forever, don't despair. Here are some suggestions for keeping your spirit positive:

Think Up

The mind is a powerful vessel. How we think and what we think can control our spirits. We literally can think ourselves up or down. To keep out the negative thoughts and self-doubt:

  • Wake up thinking or saying positive statements.
  • Avoid negative media, news, emails, and downer movies and television.
  • End the day thinking or saying positive statements.
  • Think about the positives a new job brings: new skills, new relationships, and a new chance to show your skills and talents.

Positive Reminders

Surround yourself with quotes or statements of hope and encouragement. Write your favorites on sticky notes on the refrigerator or computer -- somewhere you can easily see them. Two of my favorites are from Winston Churchill:

  • "The pessimist sees problems in every opportunity...whereas the optimist sees opportunity in every problem."
  • "Never ever, ever, ever, ever, ever give up. Never give up. Never give up. Never give up..."

Take Steps

Literally. Move. Being a couch potato shows. Leave the house at least once a day. Exercise, jogging or walking will:

  • Reenergize you.
  • Help to clear the mental cobwebs.
  • Prepare you to look your best for interviews.

Pamper Yourself with Kind Acts

How you treat yourself can impact your spirit.

  • Play your favorite music softly in the background while you "work."
  • Eat healthy without hugging the refrigerator. Now is not the time to bulk up.
  • Sing -- regardless of quality. Singing happy songs will actually will help to stretch and relax your vocal chords while refreshing your spirit.
  • Avoid being sloppy. Dress and groom yourself with respect -- for you.
  • Treat yourself with affordable goodies such as a favorite food or beverage, an afternoon movie with popcorn, doing something touristy, or a mindless novel.

See Spirited People

Make sure you spend some time, preferably in person, with positive and supportive people every day.

  • Surround yourself with yea-sayers and avoid the naysayers.
  • Work your network.
  • Call people rather than email or texting them -- it's more personal and supportive.
  • If you're single and live alone, go to the library or a coffee shop to be around others.
  • Help others in need. Get out of yourself from time to time.
  • Spend quality time with your family and friends.

Keep at the Top of Your Game

Keeping your spirit up has a lot to do with how you feel about yourself. Don't let your skill set and knowledge slide.

  • Keep up on industry news.
  • Read trade journals and business magazines and newspapers.
  • If possible, practice to improve your career skill set.

Now's the Time

Enjoy the positives of your job search, like having spare time. Remember all those times you said, "If I only had time, I'd..."

  • Read those books.
  • Clean that closet.
  • Take that class.
  • Get in better shape.

Do Your Best Work to Find Work

Knowing you're taking all the right steps to find a job will help improve your spirits.

  • Write a perfect resume and cover letter for each job.
  • Send X amount of resumes out each workday without fail.
  • Keep up-to-date records of results.
  • Keep accurate contact information on companies, executives and hiring agents.
  • Have your interview clothes clean and ready to wear.
  • Work at finding work every day.

[Pat Mayfield is the president of Pat Mayfield Consulting LLC, based in San Francisco and Pleasanton, California. She specializes in sales and marketing solutions.]

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