Job seekers are constantly on the verge of a breaking point, especially if the job-hunting process is nothing more than a far cry. Across the country, thousands of job seekers continue to struggle to manage job search burnout, as nothing is forthcoming. Studies have shown that extended periods of unemployment can have a long-lasting impact on a jobseeker’s mental and physical health.
It’s no secret. Looking for a job is exhausting – mentally, emotionally and physically. The need to constantly be on the job site, racking your brain through pages and pages of vacancies is daunting. For a job market as saturated as the current one, you have to stay on top of your game. In the long run, if a job seeker encounters rejections after rejections, they are bound to develop emotional strain and withdraw.
So, how can you manage job search burnout effectively? Here are a few tips;
1. Dedicate regular time-frames for applications
In an everyday economic world, so many things can be out of your control. Therefore, the first step on how to manage job search burnout is taking control of what you can – time. While you have no control over how long it will take to land your next job, you can control the amount of time you allocate for the job-hunting process. For instance, devote at least 2 to 4 hours a day to actively job search. You can do this in the morning when you wake up, or late in the afternoon – according to your daily schedules. Like experts say, sticking to a routine enables an individual to stay focused and objective.
2. Motivate yourself to stay positive
So many job seekers have been job-hunting for so long they are on the verge of giving up. Remember, it is the consistency that pays in the end. You have to keep trying while focusing on the ultimate goal. Reach out to your network, apply each time a job speaks to you. Sometimes a job seeker may let go of a chance as they feel they have been ‘applying for so long with no progress.’ Tame your negative self-talk and watch it work out for the better.
3. Appreciate the wins
When going through the low moments, it gets easier to see the negative only. Allow yourself to celebrate the ‘little wins’ you achieve over time. To effectively manage job search burnout, keep a running list of wins of the things you were able to achieve every week. It doesn’t have to be work-related sometimes. For instance, schedule tasks that will give you a sense of accomplishment when you are done. If you can, register for an online free course that keeps you busy, while also sharpening your skills towards your next career trajectory. Attend a virtual conference, read a book and see if you finish within your set timelines.
4. Surround yourself with positivity
In addition to your own list of win and positivity, make sure you surround yourself with people who make you better. Research for articles of successful people and how they made it work, you can also research your dream industries. Learn something new about your career – getting promotions, getting internships etc. The ability to relate to what other people have gone through will lift your spirit and help you manage your own job search burnout. Remember you are not alone.
5. Remember that it is not about you
You may feel as if everything is going on around you, and it is your fault. Make a reminder to yourself that whatever job-hunting process you are going through is different for each jobseeker. As sad as the situation can be, do not take it to heart when you fail to hear back from a recruitment manager. The outcome of each application you make depends on the type of job market and recruitment system, and nothing to do with you or your expertise. It is not a reflection of yourself as a job seeker.
Finally, share out your experiences with people who may be going through the same thing. An effective way to manage job search burnout is understanding that you have other people going through the same and can learn from their own stress management strategies. You have to remember that a job search is sometimes not going to be a sprint – but a marathon. This means it may last longer than you want, but you will eventually get to the finish line. Identify the right ways to prepare yourself for the long journey through proper job searching processes.