For those moments when it’s hard to muster job-search motivation, keep these tips in mind.
If you’re one of the millions of Americans currently looking for a new job, your determination might waver at times. How do you stay motivated? Let’s take a look at these motivation tips for job seekers:
1. Get sunlight
Seeing the sun or being in sunlight is proven to make you feel good. As little as 10 minutes of skin exposure to ultraviolet rays fosters your body’s metabolism of vitamin D. On the contrary, lack of sunlight is not good for your body or mind. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a real thing; please consult a physician if you think you might have it. In fact, a common treatment for SAD is light therapy (phototherapy). When your mood is elevated, the moods of people around you are also elevated (a phenomenon known as emotional contagion), which in turn can help keep you motivated. Basically, in addition to all these other great benefits, sunlight makes you popular … and who doesn’t love popularity?
Relieve stress.Get the heart rate up. Get your blood circulating and pumping oxygen throughout your body. Walking, running, dancing, yoga (among other activities) or playing a sport releases endorphins and other “feel-good” chemicals that mobilize you for action and motivation.
3. Eat well, eat right
Know your body. Consuming foods that energize and provide real nutritive value is a great way to help you stay motivated. Moderation rules. Avoid fast food, refined sugar, or overly processed items. Hint: If what you’re eating is going to make you curl up for naptime or put you in a food coma, you should leave it alone … unless you need the nap and it’s not interfering with your previously scheduled job-hunting activities.
4. Read motivational books (and/or listen to motivational speeches)
Self-improvement is a huge industry. Pick out some titles from the local library or stream videos on YouTube. Sometimes inspirational words and stories can light the fire you need to keep a positive attitude in your employment search. I personally recommend Jeff Olsen’s The Slight Edge, which talks about doing little things consistently over time.
Sleep governs everything. Without enough of it, your body, brain, and mood suffer. You want to be at peak sharpness when applying and interviewing for positions. Quality shut-eye is one motivation tip for job seekers we can all agree upon.
Schedule playtime so you can release yourself from the tyranny of what might seem like a perpetual chore. Unstructured play boosts immune response and can also help stimulate creativity, often indispensable to job searches (and a skill coveted by many employers).
7. Shake up your environment
Sometimes the brain needs new stimulation to stay sharp. Take a different route to the grocery store or to your kids’ school. Drop in and explore some business or park you always pass by but never enter. Go on a road trip just because. Work on your job applications or update your LinkedIn profile from Starbucks or the local library. Change the surroundings, and your mind will be more alert to everything due to the newness around you.