Job Search Stress - What to Avoid

Most people are aware of the stress we face in various situations. It might be moving homes, tackling illness or a bereavement. There are many times in our lives when external pressures affect the way we behave. It is at times like these that we often need advice and guidance to help know what to do, and more importantly what not to do.

Without the right advice, things can become more daunting than necessary. If you have been made redundant, are in between jobs or considering a change of career; the stress of budgeting your finances, maintaining a stable family lifestyle, managing your time effectively and many other issues can have profound consequences on your job searching.

Recognizing that job search stress is real will make a great difference in the effectiveness of your attempts to find employment as quickly as possible. If you can define the possible causes of job search related stress, you will be able to put strategies into place to cope with any job search anxiety that will significantly affect how you approach your job hunting, how you perform at interviews and how you relate to others during the time it takes you to get your next job.

Job search stress can be handled

The good news is that having an awareness of job search stress is the best way of ensuring you have safeguards ready that you can put into practice. Planning ahead will greatly reduce many of the situations that can cause job search stress.

Here are some useful tips:

Use your time effectively: Set a schedule that will suit you. If you work better in short bursts rather than sitting down for long periods, factor that into your schedule. Your choice of career might dictate your best method of job hunting, if you are a tradesman it might be best to telephone possible employers and contacts when they are more receptive rather than calling them during a hectic work schedule.

Keep a job search record: Write a record of the jobs that you have applied for, where you saw the advertisement, when you sent your application form, calls you have made, CVs and speculative letters you have sent. This serves as a great way of ensuring that you carry out any necessary follow up action and do not miss any important deadlines.

Don't be afraid to ask for support and advice. At times it may seem as you are the only person going through the job search process. The fact is that nearly everyone has to face the process of finding a job. If you ask for help you may be surprised and find another means of achieving your aims that you had not considered. Sometimes two heads are better than one. There are many job clubs or groups, careers advisors and personal coaches that could offer you the right advice to help you.

What to avoid:

Procrastination - Putting things off can bring unnecessary stress to a job search. Delaying doing the things you know you need to do, often means you lose enthusiasm. So when you read the classified ads and find a few that seem interesting, cut the ads out, get your CV and cover letter and answer them immediately. If you put it off and don't get round to doing it at all; then you'll get nowhere. Knowing that you have made the effort will help you eliminate a lot of job search stress.

Perfectionism - One man's perfectionist is another man's egoist. There are many possible situations where adopting a perfectionist attitude can work against you when job searching. Don't get caught up in the need to produce the perfect CV - it does not exist or is never used! An impressive CV is important, but spending hour after hour amending and revising may only serve to add to the worry. Do the best you can, but don't let it become an obsession.

Pessimism / Powerlessness - Pessimism and powerlessness often go hand in hand. It is easy to feel that you are not in control of your life when you are dependent on others to give you the opportunity to get that job. If during this period you can maintain a positive attitude and focus on the goal, you stand a great chance of defeating these two negative feelings. Concentrate on your strengths and what you have to offer, not just an employer but family and friends. Be optimistic and remember you can control your future.

Problem People - There are certain people who live by the 'glass is half empty' belief. These negative people and individuals can truly bring your spirits down. You need to do whatever you can to avoid any additional job search stress. Keep telling yourself that their mind-set is not the same as yours. You are responsible for your own thoughts and actions, not theirs. Always remember that positive thoughts can bring positive results.

There are many reasons for why we suffer stress, we all have different problems and need different means to cope, live with and defeat the worries and anxieties we face. If you are currently seeking employment the best way to cope with stress is to remain positive and believe in yourself - never give up and you will succeed.

Harry James has over 10 years experience of designing and delivering Personal Development courses, offering career advice and guidance, team building and helping people into work.

Further useful personal development articles can be found on http://www.thepersonaldevelopmentcafe.com

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