Jobhunting is, by its very nature, a lonely endeavour. Loneliness plus something as demoralising as a protracted jobhunt can lead to some pretty negative thoughts. Lizzi Hart, Researcher at the Graduate Recruitment Bureau, flags up five nasty little thoughts that will likely haunt you at some point, and how to take them down.
You spend hours looking for jobs, sometimes getting through to interviews which end up going badly. You’re struggling to pay for life’s luxuries like, say, food. Your parents are sick of being used as an overdraft – and let’s not even talk about your other debts. With all of this looming over you, it’s no wonder you’re feeling down. But you WILL find something, you just need to push these thoughts out of your brain and carry on the search.
1. There are no jobs out there.
This is what every jobhunter is hearing. Your fellow students will make this quip when you’re at university, and your fellow graduates will make this remark when you’ve all graduated. Ask yourself, are you just repeating what others have told you? Think of it from the employer’s perspective: with the vastness of the internet it’s actually really hard to find you as well as the other way around. The jobs are out there, it might just take a bit longer to find them than you expect.
2. I signed up to a website, and there are no jobs I like.
Think of it as buying a coat – you wouldn’t just go to H&M and upon finding nothing you like, give up the search and condemn yourself to a rain-drenched winter. No, you would pop over to Primark, Topshop or Next and carry on the search. The point is, the jobs market is a market and there are an endless amount of vendors all advertising different opportunities. You have to register to them all if you want a true representation of what’s out there. If your hypothetical ideal company is advertising on a website that you’re not registered with, then you won’t hear about it. Think of every registration form as a newly opened door.
3. I’ve got no work experience.
Then MAKE your own experiences. Everyone has to start somewhere. If you want to write for a living, start your own blog and promote it across all the social media platforms available. If you want to be a make-up artist, volunteer for photo shoots – you’ll get copies of the photos for your portfolio and get a peek into the workings of your ideal career.
4. I feel like my university doesn’t get looked at by the employers I want
I’m not suggesting you do a 40 hour week for nothing, but asking a company if you can help contribute in even the smallest capacity adds valuable experience and kudos to future job applications – plus it shows that you have the dedication to work hard for what you want.
5. I only got a 2:2.
It’s not the end of the world. If your dream job won’t accept you in any capacity then try and gain a skill during your free time that many applicants didn’t – like a language, or a digital skill. After serious consideration, there is the option to go back and re-do your final year. After all the money you’ve spent only to feel disadvantaged by your degree, it could be worth it in the end.
Finally, you have the power to be your own boss and freelance – use your skills and put yourself out into the world. The hard work involved, as with most things in life, will see you reaping benefits massively.