Many intricate steps are woven into the job search process including building a portfolio, networking, continuously learning, looking for hands-on experience, researching companies to work for, continual resume tailoring and cover letter writing, interview preparation...I could go on. It can be difficult to remain positive when you’re on the receiving end of a rejection email.
The purpose of this article is to attempt to normalise that stress is part of the process. I hope to share some insights on how you can infuse positivity into your job search and provide a buffer for these intense feelings. I will also share some ways you can use rejection to help you grow, focus on your strengths, and techniques to help build your confidence throughout your job search journey. Let’s jump in!
When we think of positive emotions, we tend to focus solely on happiness, but positive emotions are much more nuanced than that. Love, serenity, gratitude, awe, joy, interest, hope, pride, amusement, and inspiration are just a few positive emotions we can experience. While happiness is a desirable emotion, it doesn't paint a complete picture of how we can cultivate positivity.
Positive psychology teaches us that negative emotions are more vivid and memorable, making it challenging to maintain a positive outlook. By embracing and reflecting on the many nuanced forms of positivity, we can stimulate our nervous system to enhance our well-being and help us navigate ups and downs with greater resilience.
I like to call a friend or loved one and share the positives of my day. What exercise can you implement to hone in on the range of positive emotions we experience?
Making Affirmations and Using Visualisation
Another way to stay positive during your job search is to use affirmations. These positive statements can help you stay motivated, focused, and optimistic. Whether you start your day with a few, repeat them to yourself whenever you need a boost, or post them on sticky notes around your computer, they can make a huge difference in your overall mindset.
Here are a couple of affirmations you can use, or feel free to create your own:
- “I am a skilled UX designer with unique talents and strengths that set me apart from others.”
- "I am making progress toward finding a meaningful career in UX design."
- “I am confident in my abilities and trust that the right job opportunity is coming my way.”
- “I am attracting opportunities that align with my values, interests, and goals.”
- “Every experience, whether successful or not, brings me closer to my ultimate career goals.”
- “I radiate positive energy and enthusiasm, making me a magnet for exciting job opportunities.”
By using affirmations like these, you can remind yourself of your strengths and progress. You'll be better able to handle any setbacks or rejections that come your way, and be more confident in your abilities as a designer.
Visualisation can also be a powerful tool for positive enlightenment. By walking through the motions and imagining yourself in your ideal job, you can tap into the positive energy and motivation you need to make it a reality. Start by picturing yourself in the role you want. Imagine the tasks you want to do, the people you want to work with, and the impact you want to make. If seeking a remote position, visualise yourself enjoying the extra time with your loved ones without the long commute.
Make this visualisation a regular practice, and replay it as you go through the job search and interview process. By keeping these visions in your head, you can stay focused on your goal and motivated to make it a reality.
Preparation, Confidence, and Staying Organised
A navigation system is essential for a long road trip, just as having a clear job search strategy is crucial for success. Begin by conducting thorough research on the company's products, services, and mission statement. Check out LinkedIn profiles and social media postings and study the job description. I would even suggest engaging in their most recent posts on LinkedIn. Craft an elevator pitch that aligns with the job requirements and practice it out loud. Role-play with a friend or record yourself on Zoom to improve your performance. It’s helpful to watch yourself back to identify where you can be more precise or improve your presentation. Have your answers to all the most common interview questions ready to go.
As you become more prepared, your confidence will grow and reflect positively in your conversations with interviewers. Acknowledge and celebrate small successes such as productive video interviews or getting invited to a second round. Celebrating these wins will help you stay motivated and focused on the positives, giving you the energy to succeed in your job search.