Career Fear: Steps to Ensure a Confident Job Hunt

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure." - Marianne Williamson

Fear can make us shut down. It constricts our brains and compels the downward spiral that is procrastination and avoidance. The key here is that fear keeps us from taking action, which is the most detrimental thing you can do amid a job search.

Many of us are graduating this semester, if not next year, and have already begun the "dreaded" job search that we are so often warned of. We are bombarded with advice from those before us like: "Take any job you can get!” "You have to apply to 30 jobs a day!" and "You can't start where you actually want to be!"

It can be hard to feel confident and in control of your future when so much is unknown. How are we supposed to begin this job hunt with confidence and positivity when it has been ingrained in us that this is difficult and it should be a struggle? This kind of thinking leads to procrastination and a deep foundation of anxiety during a time that should be filled with excitement at what the future may hold.

We become afraid that we may get stuck in the horror story of commuting to a job, hours away, or sitting at a desk all day in an environment that we hate. We wallow in the fear that we may not get a job in time to pay back student loans, which adds to the desperate attempt of taking any job that may be available. We begin to think up stories in our brain, which in turn, builds career fear.

But it doesn't have to be this way. You can take control of your career fear now and you can do it by implementing these tips to ensure that your confidence during the career hunt will keep you going all the way to success!

Make a List of Everything You Can Do

Think of any possible thing that will help you in a job search and write it all down; anyone you may have lost touch with and can meet up to network, a friend that could take professional headshots for your Linkedin, your aunt who can critique your resume, literally anything. Also, be sure to check out your campuses career center! They often offer classes and workshops to help with the job hunt such as interviewing practices or networking events.

Start Organizing Job Applications

Make a folder on your desktop to keep all possible job leads organized. Within that folder make an individual folder for each job you apply for to really stay on top of things. Organization is the key to keeping yourself from feeling overwhelmed and knowing exactly what you need to get done.

Make an Outlined Schedule

No one is going to do this work for you. Treat your job search like a job where you are the boss (finally!) Make sure you are doing something each week of the semester to ensure you get that job! Refer to your list you made in the first step to see exactly what you need to do.

Keep Your Spark Alive

Looking for a job is exhausting, so make sure you continue to engage in activities that inspire you, where you can continue to learn new things. Employers like to see confident and well-rounded perspective candidates. Plus, exploring new things can help you determine what kind of career path you may want to take. Read new books, take a photography class, teach yourself kung fu, start a cooking blog. Try something and keep trying it!

 

It’s time to stop using up your energy focusing on your anxieties. Use that much-needed energy to take action towards your dreams.

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