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Job Hunting? 3 Strategies to Boost Your Confidence

Kathy Stutzman has a passion for creating meaningful connections. Author, facilitator, leadership coach, public speaker, workshop trainer.

This gift from one of my daughters reminds me of what at least one other person saw in me. On difficult days I glance at this and remember...this is who I really am.

This gift from one of my daughters reminds me of what at least one other person saw in me. On difficult days I glance at this and remember...this is who I really am.

Get Focused and Stay Focused

It is true that there are a lot of jobs “out there." It is also true that there are a lot of jobs out there that just don’t fit your own unique needs. So how do you get focused and then stay focused? Here are a few ideas to help keep you focused:

  • Write down your objective and vision for the job you are seeking and post that vision on the desk where you are originating your search. If you are looking for a job in a specific industry, with a specific qualification or a specific compensation package, write all of those specifics down and review them before getting on all of the search engines offering you opportunities for application.
  • Be clear about how each job you plan to apply for fits your vision before you spend countless hours and energy researching and applying for the position.
  • Listen to yourself prior to applying for a job, but decipher the difference between a job that is not a good fit, and one that challenges you enough that it creates a stirring of fear. Plow through the fear and apply, do not plow through a bad fit.
  • Select several companies that you would like to work for and focus your energy on those companies;
  • Set goals weekly for the number of positions you will apply for each week, write those goals down, and then check them off as you apply.
  • Vision yourself working for the organizations as you send off the applications, think about how your application looks to the person who will be looking at it, if you worked at that company would you want you to be hired?
  • And then make it so—follow up, read about the business, current trends so that when you do have an interview, you are knowledgeable, you are an asset to that business. At the least, you will have an opportunity to learn more about that particular company. Everything you learn about the business will help at some point—consider this process like taking a class.

Get focused and stay focused. It is too easy to have your energy wasted and dissipated in a shotgun approach to job seeking; increase your confidence by setting goals, accomplishing those goals, and becoming an expert. The more you keep your energy focused, set goals, visualize, and then “act as if” you are already working in a particular situation; the greater likelihood that a good fit will manifest.

Sometimes we don't know where the path will take us and have to put one foot in front of the other through the fear.

Sometimes we don't know where the path will take us and have to put one foot in front of the other through the fear.

Stay Strong

Staying strong is a strategy that requires others to be your cheerleaders. Getting rejected is awful, getting rejected when you feel desperate is even worse and yet the job-seeking process will inevitably involve some kind of rejection. Here are some strategies for staying strong through a job search:

  • Develop a cheerleader wall where you post great job reviews, articles and awards that you have received. When you get compliments—post them on the wall and if you need more, ask your friends to write down things they appreciate about you. Don’t be shy and hold-back here—you deserve this.
  • Find a mentor who will help you be objective about your applications, cover letters, interviews—someone who not only knows you, but also who knows how you work so that they can help you be your best. Meet with your mentor monthly, review goals, accomplishments, and any updates you have from your search.
  • When you do receive a rejection, ask for feedback, and write it down. The review that feedback with your mentor. Using the feedback from a rejection will make you stronger and better next time.
  • Find a serenity or abundance prayer, meditation or poem to read daily. The process of job hunting requires such strength and focus, that you may lose your balance—so be certain to add a spiritual or artistic component to the search to keep you balanced. Read the poem out loud each morning and each evening to center yourself.

Between the rejections and questions from well-meaning friends asking how your search is going, it is hard to stay strong. Surround yourself with cheerleaders and mentors who can help keep you on track, support you, and give you honest, constructive information so that you can continue to approach your search like a warrior.

Time for Action

Be Confident

Confidence is critical to a productive job search, and yet, without work and facing rejections, it is understandable that confidence may waiver. Here are some strategies to employ to keep your confidence at its peak:

  • Find an organization or cause that needs a few hours of your volunteer time each week. While it may seem counterproductive to be working for free, donating time increases your sense of well-being, additionally, if you are out in the public doing something that feels good and you enjoy, you will feel better. And finally, volunteering in a field in which you may be seeking a position will help you keep your skills fresh and may lead to untold opportunities.
  • Add motion to your life—plan to spend 30 minutes a day at a minimum walking or getting some exercise. Not only will this help your attitude, your mood and confidence, but the movement will also counteract the energy of stress and focus that comes from the job search. And the benefit is that you will feel better when you do get that interview.
  • Create a confidence playlist. Liz Ryan, CEO and Founder of Human Workplace often posts mojo moving music on her social media platforms. She is revolutionizing the workplace and her music recommendations are always inspiring. My confidence playlist includes a lot of affirmative words and action-oriented music—which speaks to me—you can create your own personal playlist, songs that inspire, motivate, and get your mojo moving.

Confidence is so important to the successful job search, so hang in there—you can do it!

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I'd Love to Hear From You!

What strategies have you used to help keep focused on your job search? I would love to hear about it in the comments below.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


Kathy Stutzman (author) from When not traveling, located in Colorado or Minnesota on May 14, 2016:

What do you do to build your confidence in the face of adversity?

Kathy Stutzman (author) from When not traveling, located in Colorado or Minnesota on December 13, 2014:

Thanks Mel Carriere! I appreciate the comments and would have to say that sometimes even for those of us over 50...the rejection can stick a little, although I love the visual of rejection bouncing off - may have to add that to the list - thanks.

Mel Carriere from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado on December 13, 2014:

Excellent advice. By age 50 you learn that rejection is inevitable and you let it bounce off of you, but young people could certainly stand to gain by learning about the cruel realities of the job market and how to bounce back. Great hub!

Kathy Stutzman (author) from When not traveling, located in Colorado or Minnesota on December 13, 2014:

Thanks for your comments, I hope this helps your son, it is really difficult to keep positive and confidence strong - you can be his cheerleader!

Mary Hyatt from Florida on December 13, 2014:

Thank goodness I no longer have to worry about getting a job, but my 19yr. old son is trying hard to find a job to work on his days off from his college classes. He gets very frustrated.

Great article. Voted UP and shared.

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