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How to stay motivated during your job search

Nothing beats that feeling when you first set out on a search for a new job. You’re excited for the future, eager to embark on new challenges and highly motivated to wow potential employers. And yet, that phone won't ring...

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Read time: 3 minutes | Author: Grant Torrens - Regional Director Hays Singapore

For those who find their job search is taking longer than expected, these feelings of optimism can soon wane, and job hunting starts to feel like a chore. 

However, to be successful in your search for a new job, it’s crucial that you try to push these worries and frustrations aside, and these tips will help you do so.

1. Remember why you want a new job

What was your initial motivation for looking for a new job? After weeks of unsuccessful job hunting we can easily lose sight of our primary motivation and feel like it’s easier to stay in the same job. Perhaps you want new challenges, more flexible work hours, to break into a new industry or simply find a role in a company where there’s room to move up and gain more responsibility. Perhaps you’d like a higher salary or more benefits, or an opportunity to learn new skills.

Whatever your motivation for leaving your existing job, don’t lose sight of it. Every time you feel frustrated with the job search, keep your motivation in mind and remind yourself that the right job will arrive eventually, providing that you continue to work hard enough to get it. It’s also helpful to write down your career goals, and maybe even a career bucket list, which you can return back to during tough times to ensure you stay focused on the right path.

2. Deal with rejection constructively

It’s awful being rejected for a job you desperately wanted, particularly when you felt as though the interview went well.

When reacting to rejection, it’s easy to apportion blame to others, to rail against the world and its failure to act on your behalf. This gets you nowhere, and indeed damages your attitude for future occasions.

It’s natural to feel disheartened, but make sure that you don’t take rejection personally and instead use it as a way to improve; seek feedback from the company as to why you weren’t right from the job, and listen to and take on board what they have to say. 

3. Take some time off from the job search

With hours being spent searching for positions, completing applications and preparing for interviews, the job hunt can seem like a job in itself. Take a week off and focus on other things in your life, or even take the time to upskill yourself in an area that will boost your CV. After a short break, you’ll have renewed energy and motivation for the job search.

4. Lean on your support network

Chatting to family, friends and mentors about your job search can give you an outlet for your frustrations and help you see things from a different perspective.

Didn’t get a response from that job you applied for? Perhaps a chat with your best friend will help you realise it wasn’t quite right for you anyway. Cringing over an interview that didn’t go as well as you’d hoped? Maybe your career mentor will give you some tips on how to nail them in the future.

5. Use online resources to keep your head in the game

We all need some inspiration every once in a while, so when you’re feeling low, seek some out online. Try watching a Ted Talk that features someone you look up to, and let yourself be picked up by their inspirational words.

6. Don’t be too hard on yourself

Look back on what you’ve achieved in your life so far and remember how capable you are. In particular, remind yourself of how far in your career you’ve come, the skills you’ve picked up along the way and the amount of knowledge you have.

Doing this will help you to stay positive and realise what a great asset you will be to the right company – all you have to do is find them.

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