Below is a little excerpt from my e-book “Practicing persistence” that talks about my first job search experience in the US back in 2010-2011. It took me 8 months to get a job during that economy, and Persistence I think was the key essence learning from that. Given the times we are living, I thought it might be helpful to remind us how important persistence can be in life.
The job search process can quickly become daunting, disappointing or depressing. The more you are in the process and you have not reached the final outcome the more discouraging it gets. I have been through this process and I can tell you that 6 months can feel like an eternity. Especially for someone who is impatient, has always been financially independent, wants to see things happening as soon as possible and is also used to being productive.
During my job search I met people who had been unemployed for 1 or even 2 years. I met people who had great work experience and were finding it very tough to get a job in the current market. For me, – I guess- it was just a clear objective I had to accomplish. I had been a student for 2 years after working hard for 5 years. I had spent a lot of money, became financially strapped again and I had to start recovering my investment. Failure was definitely not an option.
At the end of the day- the fact that I NEVER gave up or stopped pursuing my goal really helped. I started the whole process with lots of energy and ideas. I built my whole strategy around the concept of meeting people. It took me probably a month or so to start actually meeting people. The first step was to reach out to them. For that- I relied heavily on LinkedIn. I had this mentality that I will eventually find a job. It’s true that some days were tougher than others, – but I always used to tell myself:
- If you stop doing what you’re doing, then the final result will be zero for sure. You will not accomplish what you want
- If you continue/don’t stop then there is a probability greater than zero that you will reach your objective
That was the thing that kept me going. I always had the choice to give up and go back home to Europe. I did not do that though. I wanted a job in THIS market.
The key thing about the job search is that you just get a lot of NOs before you get the YES that you want. That’s actually a GREAT thing. The whole process really forces you to be/become better; forces you to know yourself better, what you want and what really makes you happy. It was a blessing in disguise for me. It forces you to push the envelope and be creative but above all –, I think it’s all about PERSEVERING.
Things that helped me through the process:
- Talking to people who were in the same situation as I was. It’s great to hear other people’s perspectives on things. It was great to hear how they went about the whole job search process and what helped them in the process;
- Getting encouragement and support from your friends and loved ones was also very helpful. I was blessed to have people who really offered support during a time like this. Talking to these people about the process and what I was going through helped me a lot.
- I never stopped believing in myself and in my capabilities! I knew I was going to get a job eventually. Self-confidence, faith call it what you want. I knew it was just a question of time.
- The idea that sometimes you have to be patient to get to the final result kept me going too. What I have learned through this whole process is that sometimes you just have to work harder, longer, and push yourself more to get what you truly want.
One of my fellow job-seekers had also some wise words on their job search experience: ”Overall what we all need in our search is consistency. Nobody will come to your door to offer you a job. At the end you are the product that you are selling and if you don’t put yourself in the market, nobody will help you”.( Jose Serrano Castro.