Job Search and the “Happiness Factor”

Happy Job SearchersLadies and gentlemen, I won’t sugarcoat the overwhelming process that is “job search,” with all of its materials preparation, networking meetings, person-to-person introductions, resume submissions, and myriad coffee dates with contacts. Whew! Catch your breath! It’s brutal, really, and honestly, everyone on the planet knows it.

So, what to do when the angst you invariably suffer in job search creeps into your psyche when you’re about to meet new contacts, or luck would have it, score an interview? Do you simply hope it won’t be noticed?

Not in your wildest dreams. Your happiness factor can be your winning hand.

Perhaps I’m outing my age if I ask if any of you remember Roy Scheider’s scene in All that Jazz, where he feels absolutely lousy, but steps in front of the mirror, puffs himself up, and says the now famous line “It’s showtime, folks!” So, try it! Before you leave your home, stand in front of a mirror, with your crispest professional attire and spit-shined hair and shoes, and boldly say “It’s showtime, folks!” and bring on the smile.

Let’s talk about this. How can we pump up the happiness meter to “10” if we’re burning out in the daily job search grind?

It just so happens, I have some pointers:

  • Switch your thinking to an optimistic perspective. When you’re in job search and it’s taking time for a breakthrough, a wave of pessimism can be a normal response, and understandably so! But remember, you can choose to be optimistic with every call and meeting because they take you closer to landing a job.
  • Spend time with your family and friends. Relationships are the most important contributor to a happy life, no matter what it brings. Maintain your close relationships to boost your self-confidence, and provide a sounding board during your search. PS – your close friends and family might give you an excellent perspective and worthwhile suggestions.
  • Learn new things while you’re pounding the turf. Research, take a class, or read material that has always peaked your interest, but you’ve put aside for a rainy day. Hello! The rain is pelting you! These activities give you a mental “reset” and make you a more interesting person in conversation.
  • Finally, take long walks outside. Appreciate everything around you. My husband and I make this a constitutional several evenings a week. Walking and deliberate notice of surroundings is amazingly therapeutic for decompressing and lightening up. Sound good? And, as I’ve emphatically stated time and again, the exercise is great for you.

Choose some or all of these proven tips. It’s the little things we do in life that create our future. Oh, and one more tidbit. Studies show that if you adopt optimism in your life, you’ll feel younger and be more resilient. That’s a plus, is it not?

Alright! Pump yourself up and repeat after me: “It’s showtime, folks!” Now go forth and knock ’em dead.

Di Chapman is Power Connections’ Chief Communications Officer.

Photo by Jozef Polc