Photo by Kayla Farmer on Unsplash

When you are in the midst of your job search, it can often feel like the world is weighing heavily on your shoulders. And the more time you spend looking for a job—and not finding one—the more negative you tend to become.

And that negativity is understandable—you spend so much of your time writing a good cover letter and looking through resume examples to inspire your resume design, with no discernable success.

But you don’t need to let that negativity get you down—in fact, you can find ways to stay positive and motivated during the job search, no matter how long it takes.

Here are three tips for staying positive during your job search even when the chips are down.

Set Realistic Goals

Goal-setting during a job search is crucial. There are steps to be followed when you are searching for a new job and you need to accomplish each one successfully if you want to stay positive.

You don’t want to end up wasting time sending emails to recruiters willy-nilly as that will only make your efforts feel more futile and fuel negativity.

Instead, set yourself daily goals such as the below:

  • Visit five job sites every day
  • Send 10-15 job applications every day
  • Spend two hours researching cover letters every week
  • Customize a new resume every two weeks

These goals will help you stay focused in your job search while also making the process far more productive.

But, as you will have seen from the brief list above, you also need to be realistic in the goals you set.

Just as you wouldn’t aim to grow your business in a week, or master a new proposal software in a few hours, understand that you can’t send 30 applications every day if you are customising resumes and cover letters for each application.

You should also not hope to get a job within days of starting a job search—it is highly unlikely to happen and if you think you can achieve this goal, you will be disappointed.

Also, if anyone you know tells you they got a job within days of starting their search, please don’t believe them. They are either lying or omitting some essential facts from the story.

Setting yourself unrealistic goals will make it impossible for you to achieve anything, and the lack of success will breed negativity, which, in turn, will derail the whole job search process.

Give yourself goals that will motivate you and keep you engaged, but be realistic about what those goals should be so you can actively achieve them and see results from your efforts.

Keep Yourself Busy

The job search process is grueling, mainly because there’s so much time spent waiting for something to happen. Too much is out of your control.

But your free time is in your control, and you should put that to good use.

Keep yourself busy even when you aren’t looking for a job. Read up about the ecommerce to mcommerce process or try your hand at writing case studies, even if these have nothing to do with your job.

The important thing is to not get so absorbed in the search that you forget to do anything else—this will impact your frame of mind and lead to negativity.

A hobby, even if it is just watching webinars about a different field of work, will lift your spirits by giving your mind a break.

Doing something else will also engage your brain, forcing you to focus on something else other than the job search.

And this activity will have another unintended consequence—you will end up learning about something new or getting better at something. All because you wanted to take a break!

Take Up a Course

Taking a break to engage your mind is one important aspect of staying positive during the job search. But another activity you should think of taking up is a course.

Academics can seem like a chore when all you want to do is find a job, but it can actually boost your spirits and inculcate a positive mindset—all of which are good for the job search—all of which are good for the job search and will stop you thinking about how much you hate HR.

Taking a course will keep your mind engaged and help you learn something that could be beneficial to the field you are applying in—learning about publishing platforms could help you join the marketing world, for instance.

Additionally, a course will likely help you meet other people, which is crucial to staying positive in the job search.

Being cloistered at home sending application after application isn’t good for anyone’s health. Meeting other people will help you remember that you are not alone in the world, or even in your job search.

You will probably meet fellow students who are in a similar position as you. They could have tips to share with you to make your job search easier, or may require your help, which will make you feel more fulfilled.

Of course, there’s always the chance that one of your course-mates is looking for someone to fill a position with your skills, and you end up getting your dream job in in-app marketing as a result.

Take yourself out of your home and try to learn new skills. Not only will this help you better yourself—thus making you a more valuable employee—but will also connect you with other people who could make the job search easier.

Bring the Positivity to Job Search

The job search process is undoubtedly one of the most trying experiences in anyone’s life. But that doesn’t mean that you have to become a negative person because of it.

Use the above three tips to remain as positive as possible during the job search. Set yourself goals that will push you to achieve something. But be realistic or you will face failure, which breeds negativity.

Keep yourself busy apart from doing your job search. Use your free time wisely to read or practice something that will engage your brain and stop you from becoming too involved in the job search process.

Finally, take up a course—not only will it take you away from the job search but it will connect you with people who will make you feel less isolated and may even get you your dream job.


  • Ronita Mohan

    Content Marketer


    Ronita Mohan is a content marketer at Venngage, the online infographic template and design platform. Ronita enjoys writing about productivity, design, social media, the digital world, as well as pop culture and diversity.