4 Ways to Avoid Feeling Overwhelmed in Your Job Search

Despite any feel-good commercials, smiling faces on ads, or cheery self-help advice blogs that may gloss over the issue, anyone who’s ever been on the career market knows that searching for a new job is nervewracking.  If you’re currently employed there’s a constant worry about whether your current employer will find out about your quest and concerns over just what you’ll do if you can’t land a better gig. If you’ve been laid off or are otherwise without ideal employment, you can add the stresses of paying your bills and being able to afford to eat to the pressures you’ll face.  In short, rarely has a candidate summed up their job search experience as fun.

This doesn’t mean, however, that candidate looking to make a move need to suffer needlessly, or alone.  While the situation is certainly fraught with hurdles and uncertainty, there are plenty of ways job-seekers can pave a smooth path along the way.  For SimplyHired readers that are left feeling daunted by the process or even idea of looking for a new gig, here we delve into four simple ways to avoid feeling overwhelmed in your job search.

Step 1: Find The Right Partners

One of the quickest ways to feel overwhelmed in your job search is by mistakenly thinking you need to go it alone.  From mentors to professional placement agencies, there are plenty of people out there willing to lend a hand in support of your quest to find employment.  Online resources are also handy additions to your job-seeking arsenal. LinkedIn, ZoomInfo, Graph Search or Twellow are all great ideas to help you connect with professionals in your given industry or specific profession.  Spend a few hours searching, joining groups, and connecting and you’ll be well on your way to finding a resource to help ease the burden of job hunting on your own.

Step 2: Compartmentalization Gets a Bad Wrap

Having a job or career is a huge part of most individual’s identity as a human being.  It’s no coincidence that most polite conversation starts up with some variation of “so, what do you do?”  Because of this, those looking to land a new gig often picture job-hunting as one large mountain to be conquered.

In order to reduce stress try, instead, thinking of the application and interview process as separate steps or tasks.  Assign target goal dates to small tasks such as freshening up your resume, searching for jobs, applying, and networking.  Breaking one large problem into smaller tasks is an easy way to reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed by your job search.

Step 3: Make Low Impact Contact

If we’ve said it once we’ve said it a million times: networking is a vital aspect to finding that job of your dreams.  Whether it be a mentor from school or a prior position or professional colleagues in your field, making connections with people can make a huge difference in your job search.  

This universal truth brings problems of its own for those among us who are less than comfortable in large groups or social gatherings.  If you find yourself hesitant to enter into the networking game, or reluctant to ask for assistance from those in the know, try segueing into the field with some low impact contact first.

Inviting a colleague or professional acquaintance out for drinks or dinner or showing up to an industry conference is a great way to break the ice and won’t come across too strong.  It’s a natural part of these types of events to discuss your current work prospects which will lead to genuine conversations about openings or potential referrals.

Step 4: Just Make the Pitch

If you’ve ever been the person at a garage sale who has that inability to haggle or ask for a better price, you probably know how overwhelming it can be to ask someone for a job.  One of the easiest ways to overcome this fear, however, is to realize that hiring managers and recruiting contacts are in the business of, well, getting asked for a job. These individuals not only don’t look askance at being approached by applicants, its an expectation.  

Sometimes one of the easiest ways to overcome a sense of being overwhelmed by dread or “what if’s” is to simply go out on a limb and ask to apply for a job or if there are any openings available in the first place.  In the worst case, there won’t be a current opportunity, but your initiative just might get you remembered positively when something does come along.

Have you ever felt overwhelmed during the job search process?  Have tips for de-stressing and moving along towards a career of your dreams?  Add in your personal advice and stories in the comment section to help fellow job seekers and your advice may just make it into t future update or blog.

Article Updated from the Original on September 17, 2018