Happiness can feel elusive when it comes to career especially when 49% of the workforce is unsatisfied (source: The Conference Board). In my 17+ years of experience as a career coach I have found that happiness lies in our own hands and we are more empowered than we know to find happiness through our work. Sometimes we often look to a new job as the path to happiness. It certainly can help, but it needs to be done properly. Here are six quick tips to assist you in finding happiness when tackling the job search:
1. Take an active interest in helping others. Schedule time with past colleagues, friends, family. Find out their goals and help them. Simply share articles, make connections for them, be a sounding board, etc. We sometimes forget that networking is about giving and it’s helping others that makes us happiest. That same happiness is attractive and people will want to help you (and ideally hire you) because you are well, helpful.
2. Make sure you’re searching for the right job that’s a fit for you. Never just take your skills and experience from a resume and copy it over without a focus on your interests and passions too. Make sure your heart is into the work. For my clients, we always start with a Soul Search to uncover your true desires and purpose. Only then, can start to create an ideal career path and focus any job search in the right areas.
3. Don’t be a secret. Find/create projects that showcase your talents and then update your LinkedIn profile with what your accomplishments. And its not bragging if it’s true. Ask for testimonials, and share examples, and photos. Social media is a great way to get the word out about who you are and what you can do.
4. Create deeper connections within your existing circles. Take on a new or expanded role at work or in your community that interests you. People will become more aware of what you’re capable of and may seek you out for new jobs opportunities. Also share your ideal job description from your Soul Search with those your trust in your network. They’ll know what you’re looking for and can help you find it.
5. Maintain a positive attitude. It can be easy to get down on yourself if you don’t land a new job right away. Take to heart the adage, “rejection is the universe’s protection”. It will help you see that the jobs that didn’t work out, weren’t a fit and there’s something better for you on the horizon. Make a daily list of accomplishments while job searching. We can get so caught up in the job being the only measure of success when the relationships we strengthen, the informational interviews we conduct and the skills we develop are an equally great measure of a well-managed career. When you focus on what you are doing, it helps keep your attitude positive as it can feel as if it’s only a matter of time until the right opportunity presents itself. Join a mastermind group and you’ll get support in keeping your attitude in check.
6. Spend time with yourself/on yourself. Take time away from the daily grind. Set up time in the morning to journal thoughts over coffee in a quiet setting, take personal development classes on-line or in the community, or treat yourself and travel for a career retreat. Taking these breaks will help you if you’ve been feeling trapped in an unhappy cycle, just going from job to job.
At the end of the day, as Audrey Hepburn said, “The most important thing is to enjoy your life – to be happy.” Use these tips to empower yourself to find happiness in your work and job search today.