I left my job last month.
I was surrounded by talented, wonderful people and don’t regret my time there (so much so that I’m now freelancing with them), but ultimately, it just wasn’t the right role for me.
So here I am, on the job hunt. And between a handful of freelance projects to keep me ticking along, I’m writing applications, pursuing and creating opportunities and networking my ass off. It’s hard.
We’ve all been a job hunter at some point in our lives. And whilst every job hunt is unique, the one recurring theme is that everyone hates it.
The recurring theme of any job hunt is that everyone hates it.
But does it always have to be so tedious?
Of course, there are always serious factors that come with job hunting and possible unemployment, be it having dependants, making rent, paying bills – serious responsibilities to rightly prioritise.
But when you’re in a situation where these aren’t desperate concerns (immediately anyway) – why is it that the job hunt is still as depressing as ever?
It’s a challenge to get motivated, stay positive and feel like you’ve been productive, even when you’ve spent all day and evening actively working. And I know I’m not alone in these thoughts. Whilst I’m not naive enough to believe a mere change in mindset will make all these issues disappear, I’ve gone full Pollyanna and thought about the 3 reasons I – and any others in a similar position – should make the most of this situation.
1. You are not restricted by the typical 9-5
Whether it’s an interview, a phone call, a run in the park or lunch with a friend; I don’t have to plan it around my work day. So tomorrow I’ve planned a museum crawl around London, and I’ll job hunt in the evening. Because I CAN!
2. You can use the breathing room to think
What do you really want from a new job? What do you really not want? What do you want to do with the rest of your life? You know, small stuff like that. If you’re always operating at a million miles an hour there’s no time to think. Until now.
3. You can put time towards fun things
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. This is one of the hardest things as a job hunter – giving yourself time off. But it’s necessary. Fresh air, friends and food make a day decidedly better, and they’ll without doubt improve any applications.
I won’t lie and say that the job hunt is a walk in the park. Except possibly tomorrow when I do plan to walk in the park. But it doesn’t have to be a complete misery. Yes you’ll feel vulnerable, frustrated and sometimes just plain low. But it’s also so rare to have the flexibility, time and mental space that come with this situation.
Will it ever be fun? Probably not. But I intend on making it as fun as it can damn well be.