How to Not Let Your Job Search Feel Like A Full-Time Job

Nabila Ikram
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“Work smarter; not harder.”

We’ve all probably heard this phrase at one point or another. It’s a quote that highlights the idea of being efficient and is completely relevant to a dry process like job searching.

Granted, when someone is in financial need, getting a job is of utmost importance. However, productivity decreases when a person is in burnout mode. Therefore, it’s important to take steps that maximizes time spent job searching, while also allotting time to maintain our health and wellness.

Focus less on job boards and more on networking

Even in this day and age of technology, human interaction beats keywords and algorithms. Search out the key players at a company or in a field you’re targeting and try to schedule informal interviews or meetings. Furthermore, spend time looking through your own contacts. Many companies offer incentives to current employees for internal referrals who get hired- and prefer internal referrals over external applicants, therefore, upping your chances of snagging a job, or at least an interview.  

Structure and optimize your time

Just as time management is important on the job, it’s important “off” the job, as well. To avoid burnout, make sure to allocate your time between job searching, spending time with family and friends, having fun, and perhaps learning something new or expanding your skillset.

For the time spent on job searching, make sure to use it wisely so you remain productive. Job alerts are a good way to narrow your search criteria and focus on exactly the positions you want to target. As mentioned above, you want to focus more on finding networking opportunities and developing potential relationships, rather than using all your time and energy searching for jobs. 

Volunteer or take up a hobby

A win-win situation for networking and maintaining your health and well-being would be to volunteer or engage in a hobby. The activities don’t have to be related to your job search in any way. Just being out in the community can help you meet new people and make new connections. Furthermore, volunteering helps develop skills that can be transferred to a job context. On a personal level, volunteering makes you feel good and helps in maintaining a positive and driven outlook on life.  

For everything in life, moderation is key. Job searching can be a stressful endeavor that can drain a person’s energy and motivation. Therefore, it’s important to strategize one’s time to avoid burnout, while also getting results.



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  • Nancy Anderson
    Nancy Anderson

    @Robert J. thanks for your comment. If you click on the word "volunteer" that is highlighted in the text, another article will open up with some suggestions. Check it out. Any volunteering can be included on your resume. One-time volunteering is fine but, to be effective and mean something to a hiring manager, you might want to consider finding a place where you can volunteer on a regular basis. Currently, with the state of our country, many places could use volunteers to pack lunches or help pass out food or even help with the test sites for COVID-19. Hope that helps!

  • Robert J.
    Robert J.

    Excellent reasoning but not enough follow thru suggestions on the volunteering idea... would appreciate typical but specifics on looking for and evaluating possible volunteer possibilities.

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