Job search burnout is an incredibly real experience. Whether you have a position or you are currently unemployed and looking for work, job searching can be exhausting. With online platforms posting a seemingly endless list of jobs you may or may not be qualified for, job searching can be overwhelming and feel like a task of Sisyphus proportions. Recruitment Partners Inc. is here to help you end your search, while also mitigating job search burnout in the meantime.
Recognizing Job Search Burnout
Recognizing the signs of job search burnout can be difficult. You’re likely already stressed, whether it’s due to being unemployed or trying to balance the demands of your current job while finding time to search. However, stress and burnout are different. We need a little bit of stress in our lives to move forward and accomplish goals, a good kind of stress, but too much for too long can lead to being overwhelmed and eventual burnout.
7 signs that you’re experiencing job search burnout:
1. Feeling ill or in poor health
If you’re finding that you get sick far more often, have regular heachaches, you’re nauseous or groggy, aren’t sleeping well, or anything else that means you aren’t feeling physically well, this may be a sign that you’re burned out from the job search.
2. Feeling apathetic and detached
Sometimes, burnout can lead to apathy. If you’re at a point where you just don’t care, you may need to take a break and reset before continuing your job search. Detachment and apathy can make it more difficult to find work, and it can also run the risk that you pick a role you won’t be happy with.
3. Feeling overwhelmed by simple tasks
If the idea of writing one more cover letter or sending an email sets you over the edge, you’re likely burned out. Pay attention to how you’re feeling, if something that was previously a no-brainer is causing you undue stress, you’re in need of a mental break.
Is the job search causing you so much difficulty that you’re isolating yourself from friends and family? Maybe you’re tired of people asking you how the job search is going, so you choose to see no one instead. Isolating yourself is often a sign of burnout.
5. Lack of motivation
Another sign of burnout is wanting to give up or feeling completely unmotivated to continue moving forward. If you’re finding yourself completely drained and unmotivated to continue your job search, you may be burned out from the task.
6. Increased Negativity and Cynicism
Whether you feel like nothing you do is good enough and no accomplishment is worth it, you are starting to see a fault with every job and potential employer, or you feel as though the entire job search is pointless and against you, cynicism and negativity are clear signs that you’re feeling burned out from your job search.
7. Irritability with those around you
A final sign to look out for is being increasingly frustrated and irritated with those around you. Maybe your partner is just getting on your nerves, your kids are too loud, people in line are too slow, or no one in this entire province except for you knows how to drive, but finding yourself losing your cool and feeling irritated quickly is often a sign you need a break.
Dealing with Job Search Burnout
Here are seven tips to dealing with job search burnout and making sure you are able to continue on with your job search.
- Schedule Regular Start Times and Breaks
- Set Boundaries
- Plan Social Activities
- Find Someone to Lean On
- Curb Your Negative Self Talk
- Keep a List of Wins
- Get Job Search Help from a Professional
1. Schedule Regular Start Times and Breaks
No one can work tirelessly on end. Like any job, it’s important to have a schedule to follow, as well as ensure you’re taking enough breaks to give yourself time to mentally reset. If you’re job searching while working, try to keep the job search to a maximum of two hours a day, and if you’re currently between jobs, avoid working more than four or five hours a day. It’s important to give your mind time to rest, and more than a few concentrated hours of job applications aren’t going to have as good of results. Schedule breaks for lunch, going for coffee or a walk, and other activities that will get you up and away from your desk.
2. Set Boundaries
It’s important to set boundaries for yourself and others during this job searching period. When you’re not actively working on job applications, don’t let yourself be troubled by thoughts of it. When you’re taking a break, truly take a break. Setting boundaries with others can be difficult, but they are also important during this job search process. If you have set a schedule for when you’re working on job applications, let friends and family know that you do not want to be disturbed. Also, if you find it difficult to be asked about ‘how the job search is going,’ politely tell people you’re working on it but would rather not talk about it. It can be stressful and painful at times, and it’s perfectly acceptable to ask to change the subject.
3. Plan Social Activities
Make sure you plan at least one activity a week with friends or family that will get you out and about. Making sure you have something to look forward to is incredibly important, as is keeping your social skills sharp and active. It’s easy to become reclusive during the job search process, so be sure to proactively plan to be social.
4. Find Someone to Lean On
Having a support system is incredibly important while you search for a job. Find someone you can vent to or who is willing to review important applications for you. Having someone you can lean on will make a world of difference during this time.
5. Curb Your Negative Self Talk
A major contributor to job search burnout is spiraling into negativity. Do your best to curb this negative self talk and practice self compassion. It may sound silly, but giving yourself a bit of a pep talk in the bathroom mirror can actually be incredibly helpful in setting the mood for the day. Try to say a few positive things about yourself, the applications you’re working on, and hopes for the future every single day, and avoid saying the negative things, even to yourself.
6. Keep a List of Wins
A simple way to focus on the positive is to keep a list of wins. When things get tough or you’re having a hard day, these wins can be a great resource to look back on. Write out things you’re proud of or times you succeeded. You can also crowdsource these wins and ask friends and family for success stories. Being reminded of times you succeeded and inspired by how others have succeeded can be a great way to stay motivated during the job search.
7. Get Job Search Help from a Professional
Our final piece of advice for dealing with job search burnout is to seek out help from a professional. Recruitment Partners Inc. has been helping amazing people find their dream jobs for years. Our highly trained recruiters will work with you to find fantastic opportunities and ensure you’re well equipped for interviews. Sometimes, when the job search is feeling overwhelming, having the help of a professional can make the entire process feel like a piece of cake.
Recruitment Partners Inc. is here to help you end your search. We have offices in Calgary and Edmonton, and help fill positions in organizations all over Canada. If you’re experiencing job search burnout and need some help, trust that Recruitment Partners will be there for you!