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5 Ways Military Spouses Can Stay Positive During A Job Hunt
As a military spouse you have supported your service member in his or her career, but finding your own place in the workforce may be more difficult. Frequent moves, nontransferable state-specific licenses, lack of experience, and the need for child care can make it a challenge for military spouses to obtain employment. A challenge, but not impossible. The job hunt takes time, effort, and perseverance – supported by a healthy dose of optimism. Even if you have setbacks it is important to stay positive and keep moving forward. Here are some tips you can use to keep your head up during the job search process.
- Keep a goal-oriented schedule – Many people who are unemployed feel a lack of control and structure in their lives. Avoid getting into a stay-at-home slump. Wake up at a reasonable time, get dressed, eat regular healthy meals, and make a list of specific, realistic and manageable goals you want to accomplish for the day. Some goals should be related to your job search but you can also include things like learning a new skill or exercising. Filling your day with a schedule of productive things to do will help you stay positive and motivated.
- Get out and about – Between browsing job search websites, sending emails, and editing your cover letters, it is easy to get so caught up in your job hunt that you forget that there is a world beyond your computer. Take some time to go out and attend an industry event, volunteer, or meet a friend for lunch. And be sure to let everyone know you are searching for a job – you never know who might be able to help you. Staying social is good for networking and your mood.
- Avoid negativity – Avoid talking to people who bring you down, reading pessimistic job market articles, watching news programs that talk about a poor economy, etc. Being surrounded by negativity can influence your own emotions and make you feel depressed. Instead, focus on all the skills, qualities, and knowledge you have to bring to a job. Spend time with friends and family who will encourage you and build up your confidence. Don’t let negative people sidetrack you and control your happiness. A positive attitude can help you concentrate on what you need to do to get a job and will reflect well during interviews.
- Make a change for the better – If what you have been doing hasn’t been successful, take a step back and see what you could be doing differently. Maybe you are under- or over-qualified for the jobs you have been seeking. Are you sending the same cover letter to each potential employer rather than customizing them? Have you considered changing the format of your resume? Could your skills translate to a different career or industry? Some modifications to your approach may make a real difference in your job search.
- Do not give in to defeat – It can be hard to keep your spirits up if you haven’t received any phone calls or second interviews, but it is important not to lose hope. If one thing didn’t work out, quickly move on to the next. Do not waste time thinking about what didn’t happen; concentrate on what could be just around the corner. Being out of a job does not define you as a person. It does not mean you do not have skills or talent or value. It simply means you are unemployed. The most important thing you can do is to keep a positive attitude and be productive while you wait for the next big opportunity.