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You applied… now what? Tips to stay motivated while you wait

Updated: Apr 2

You invested your weekend, perhaps a few hours, days, nights, and evenings customizing and making sure your resume and cover letter is just right. And then you apply.

But you haven’t heard anything since…. One, two, three days, a week passes by..

Paranoia sets in, you begin to think of the dreaded email, the one that says, “We thank you for your application, but…..”, you check your email, your phone, and start doubting yourself, even begin to think all that hard work was for nothing.

Keep calm … it’s perfectly normal … Job search takes time… recruitment agencies and human resources go through a lot of candidates and sometimes the process takes longer.

So how do you stay motivated during the wait? Here are some tips that will help…


1. Have a plan and set goals:

It’s easy to lose sight of your goals when you are in a funk. But you need to be disciplined, focused and committed to meet your targets. So, it’s a good idea to have a well thought out plan that will help you identify your values, give you an idea of what roles you want to be in, what type of company you would be a fit for and how to market yourself when the call comes in with no hesitation.


2. Get a network:


Have a good buddy system. Whether its other job seekers, family, friends, LinkedIn or Facebook groups, or all the above. Build a network of “positive” people that will give you ideas, tips and insights, motivate you and occasionally let you blow off some steam.


3. Stay persistent (even with “rejections”):


Keep applying and building your networks. It’s important to stay pumped! Acknowledge that you didn't get the role, but move on. The reality is, you won’t be a “fit” for everything and that’s OK. The market is competitive, you won’t strike gold every time. Just stay the course. Some fields are more competitive than others. Keep working on your value pieces such as your brand, and your brag book (list of skills/talents). Keep your goals in view and focus on your story, who you are and tap into your networks for motivation.


4. Get a career coach:


Sometimes the obvious isn’t as obvious during your search. Having a coach will help with setting a clear path. A career coach will ask you the right questions to find new direction or make the existing better. Provide the expertise on the job market and trends, that will help maximize how you show up in the interviews.


5. Look for opportunities:


It’s easy to “only” look for jobs, but during this time, but its also a great time to look for areas that you can learn and grow. Depending on the last time you went job hunting things may have changed. It’s a good idea to stay calm and explore other ideas:


(a) Expand your search: There are several sites, forums, networking events, and job boards that you can choose from. Take the time to look on what is available and what others are saying regarding your industry, position of interest or the company you want to work for.


(b) Use the time for self-development: This could be a chance to see where your skills and knowledge are in comparison to the industry. Talk to your network and get feedback. And if you are not getting call backs from an application, review your resume with your coach.


(c) Stay mentally motivated: Sometimes all the above isn’t enough, listen to motivational audios and/or videos to help remind you of your value. Maintain a healthy routine, exercise, eat healthy, get enough rest and stay connected with your circle. Rejection can take its toll on you, your ability to maintain a positive mindset will be put to the test. Stay motivated.


Remember, there are many reasons why the recruiter or hiring manager may not respond to your application, just stay focused. Opportunity meets preparation, so keep growing and learning.

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