Distractions

I had a driving experience one day last week, which I would like to use as my theme for today’s blog post, which deals with those minor distractions that we encounter during the course of our job searches, and how to deal with them.

The experience went like this. I was driving southbound on a road on my way to a networking meeting, about to make a left-hand turn at an intersection with a stoplight. At this point, the road has 3 southbound lanes, including a left turn lane. Ahead of me in the left turn lane was a car with its right turn signal blinking. That’s right! The car had its right turn signal blinking. I didn’t think much about it at first, because, after all, how many times do we see a car whose driver uses the wrong turn signal. Some drivers don’t even use their turn signal at all. And then there are those who don’t turn off their signal. So, I was paying more attention to what this driver was doing, and not what he was signaling.

The light was red. Since there was no one in the center lane, this driver managed to get the car into that lane. I pulled up even with this driver. There were no cars in front of either of us. I stopped (the stoplight was red). Suddenly, I saw this car moving backwards.

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Now, imagine how you might feel if, when you are at a stoplight, you see, out of the corner of your eye, a car you’re next to moving backwards. What are you going to think? Aren’t you more likely to think that YOUR car is moving forward? (For a brief second, I did.) I’ll bet your first reaction is to check and make sure YOU are stopped. (I did that, too. And I found, to my relief, that my car was stopped.)

This was a distraction. And it was a minor one at that. But then again, isn’t a typical job search full of minor distractions like this?

Distractions like this come up every day in life, so they should not be too difficult to deal with. What matters here is how we deal with them. For this incident, being observant was a good idea. Also, being quick to decide whether or not to take some action helped. It’s the same with a job search. Every day we job-seekers have to make decisions such as whether or not to go to a networking meeting, or to choose between any number of positions to apply to online. We also have to make decisions on any distractions that come up, such as running an errand, or going to do some exercising.

Oh, and by the way, the reason the other driver was backing up in the center lane? He eventually went into the right turn lane in order to make that right hand turn. I’m sure glad this other driver is not in a position to have any more influence on the direction of my job search.

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