Scientific Tips & Tricks for the Unmotivated Job Hunter


“I’ll wait till I’m feeling more motivated.” – Said no successful person ever.

Okay, that’s a bit harsh – after all, almost every one of us out there is guilty of procrastinating at some point in our lives. It’s in our nature: in fact, human primal psychology – the instincts that kept us alive and helped us to avoid danger a million years ago – tends to work against us, sending “danger signals” and making us feel fearful or anxious over the prospect of failure.

For job seekers, these feelings usually manifest in the fear of rejection, making mistakes in an interview, or not feeling good enough for the job itself. We’ve all been there, and while it’s tough to push through, it’s 100% necessary to fight those procrastination instincts.

So how can you combat this? We’ve got a few science-y tricks up our sleeve – take a look!

Get some positivity

As you can tell, motivation and procrastination are driven by emotion – so to balance out the negative feelings that come with a not-so-enjoyable task, it’s important to practice optimism and positive thoughts.

Easier said than done, right? While positivity is influenced by genetics, there is room for you to train yourself to think happy thoughts. This can include showing gratitude to others, surrounding yourself with positive people, and more!

Accomplish something small

Often, we forget that baby steps still count as progress – and they deserve to be celebrated! Completing a small task, like doing the groceries or cleaning your apartment, can put your mind in a more positive mood, increasing your motivation to take on other tasks like job hunting! Before you know it, you’ll be on a roll with your applications!

Reward yourself

It might seem a little childish, but it’s just science – getting a reward for a job well done is a great way to motivate yourself to reach your goals. But it’s important to pick the right reward for the situation – for example, don’t take a week off after a week of productive job hunting. Kind of counterproductive, right?

Find someone to keep you accountable

It’s easy to weasel out of a commitment to yourself – but getting out of a commitment to a friend is a lot tougher. Getting someone to check in and hold you accountable to your own goals is a great way to stay on track. Bonus points if they’re also looking for a job so you can keep each other’s job hunt in check!

How do you stay motivated during your job hunt? Don’t waste any more time – start applying to amazing jobs in your area with HigherMe’s Job Board!

Psychology Today

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