Maybe you’ve seen the T-shirts which read “I’m retired. Having fun is my job.” Unfortunately, if you’re between jobs and diligent about looking for work, it can feel like exactly the opposite. The downside of understanding that looking for a job is a job is that it can seem almost impossible to give yourself some time off. Further, online job boards can make it particularly difficult to step away from the rat race of the unemployed, but you should make sure you do just that from time to time. Actually, being riveted to online job postings should be taken as a clue that you are not undertaking your job search properly. It puts you in the passenger’s seat as opposed to the driver’s seat.
First of all, it’s not a good idea to wear yourself to a frazzle pursuing lead after lead. Unemployment itself is stressful, and you need to take care of yourself to make a successful transition to a new job. Also, who knows how long your job search will last in this economy? How long can you go on without pacing yourself? Secondly, if you’re applying for every job in sight, you’re most likely applying for some for which you are not suited for. And that’s just a waste of everybody’s time. Just as people with demanding jobs need to make sure they take time off to rest and regenerate, so do those whose job is looking for work. Remember that you can achieve so much more with a fresh mind. A fresh mind will also allow you to reflect on what you’re doing right or wrong and adjust accordingly.
Whether you’re working or at home looking for work, use the same time management skills busy professionals employ to keep yourself focused:
- Set priorities – Only pursue jobs you really want or that you have a chance of landing.
- Focus your energy – Set yourself targets and go after them, as opposed to the latest online posting.
- Delegate – Use your personal and professional networks to find new opportunities.
by Danielle Dresden