Although you may need to remind yourself of them, there are some positive aspects to being in job search. Have you experienced these yet?
1. Everything you learn in this phase will remain helpful to you(after you land your next role).
Any credentials you earn, any new contacts that you meet, anyone that you’ve spent time with and shared “what you are looking for,” remain valid and useful for as long as you keep them active. If you (unfortunately) find yourself unemployed again soon, your new job search will start from a much stronger position than your prior search.
2. You have more time to develop yourself by either fine-tuning old skills, or learning new ones.
In addition to bringing your skills up-to-date, any classes, or certifications you complete demonstrate how you have kept busy while unemployed.
3. You recognize that every day’s effort is important to your progress.
Although this is true every day of your life, in job search you need to be strengthening your network, skills, and/or visibility each day to prevent inertia from setting in. “The status quo” is not welcome in job search: consistent activity is needed to influence the change in your employment status.
4. It is easier to spend more time with family and friends.
I was able to spend several days helping a friend package up and move boxes and home items as he prepared to move to another state. We had many laughs as we worked on this, and I would not have spent as much time there had I been working.
5. You learn more about you really are.
I heard so many folks say “I’ve learned so much about myself” after being unemployed for awhile. Being presented with a challenge which affects so many areas of your life, for a duration you cannot predict, will force you to determine how you approach each day. (For me, this point separates you from your resume, skills, and work experience, and identifies the qualities that make you unique. )
6. Any preventative steps that you’ve taken will pay off.
If you’ve taken steps to set aside some funds for “a rainy day,” kept your medical/dental/vision health strong, you’ll be able to rest a little easier during your job search.
7. You will be exposed to new sources of inspiration.
For me, the book “Escape from the Box: The Wonder of Human Potential” by Col. Edward L. Hubbard was especially inspiring. The way he (eventually) approached his multi-year situation resonated with me. I probably wouldn’t have come across this book, if not for attending a job search forum (and now I have an autographed copy)!
8. You can wait a little longer in the morning to shovel the snow from your driveway.
Although only a seasonal benefit, I did see a positive side on those cold, snowy mornings, to not having to get up extra early just to shovel snow, in order to drive into work as soon as possible. (Seriously though, in job search, it is easier to opt-out of driving through rush hour traffic on dangerously bad-weather days, and it is fine to appreciate those moments when they happen.)
Were there positive aspects to your job search that I haven’t called out above? Feel free to list some in the comments.
Allan Channell is a new ‘Blog to Work’ contributor. He has experience in software development, project management, and has interests in communications, Tai Chi, and humor.
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