With Thanksgiving only a week away, many of us find ourselves focused a little more on gratitude. It’s the American tradition, come to the dinner table with something you’re
grateful for. In recent years, the tradition has carried over into social media with friends posting something their grateful for each day in the month of November.
For those in a job search or working in a job they don’t like, finding something to be grateful for can be tough but the truth is approaching even the most challenging tasks with gratitude can make a big difference. Looking for a job is hard. It doesn’t matter if you’re currently employed or not. Putting yourself out there can be really tough- constant rejection, criticism, or not even hearing from employers can make you question everything. Combine that feeling with the forced happiness many feel pressured to have during the holidays and it can be exhausting.
So how do you find gratitude in times like this? Here are a few ways to help you uncover it.
- Flip the script. Each day we make a choice in how we view the world. Choose to seek out the good instead of the bad. Are you upset because you feel you have to find a new job? Instead of being angry, look at the new opportunities that lie ahead. Frustrated that you’re not hearing back from employers? View that interview as practice for the next one and keep brushing up those interview skills.
- Don’t become attached to a specific opportunity. The biggest mistake I see people make in a job search is deciding on the job they want long before the interview process is complete. They become so attached to that opportunity that they make mistakes in the interview and in the negotiation process. Instead, explore multiple opportunities and be open to what each has to say. Don’t decide for or against an opportunity until you’ve done your research and completed the interview process. Sometimes the best opportunities are the ones you least expect.
- Turn ‘forced merriment’ into great networking. I could write an entire post on this topic (stay tuned!) but the bottom line is that the holidays are a great time to reconnect with people you haven’t seen in a while. There will be gatherings that may introduce you to people you’ve never met or that friend of a friend who might just know someone. Be honest about your job search but be sure to keep it light and positive (pro-tip: avoid oversharing!). Don’t be afraid to say that you’re weighing your options or looking for a new opportunity. You just never know when Aunt Marg’s latest boyfriend might know someone looking for your expertise.
- Be kind to yourself. All of that forced merriment combined with too much sugar and alcohol can be tough on your body and spirit. Try to limit the amount you consume throughout the season & find ways to get a little fresh air. Fit in a few moments of meditation, walking, and/or exercise to keep your mind and body in great shape this holiday season.
Employers can often sense when a candidate is struggling because they appear desperate, overly rehearsed, and sometimes even angry. Finding gratitude this holiday season, will help you appear confident and at ease throughout the job search process leading to your next great opportunity!
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