We all have a good idea of the kind of things we should be doing when finding a new job, but what about the things that are no-nos? Certain activities and situations can impair our ability to look for work, even if they’re not directly related to the job application process. Here are some examples of what should be avoided by jobseekers if at all possible.
1. Crash Diets. Trying to lose weight with a short-term, dangerously low-calorie diet isn’t a good idea at the best of times. Even setting aside the obvious health risks and lack of long-term results, severely restricting our calories intake leads to us being grumpy, irritable and unable to focus. This is not ideal for job hunters, who may already be feeling under pressure and need to be able to concentrate when identifying suitable positions, filling out long application forms and attending interviews and assessment centres. If you need to lose weight, try eating healthier alternatives to what you already eat and exercising more instead.
2. Drinking Heavily. As alcohol is a depressant, drinking it to excess on a regular basis will not only leave us feeling too ill and worn down to get out there on the job market but will also depress our mood, leaving us feeling more negative about our job chances than we otherwise would be. Although it’s tempting to hit the bottle when things aren’t going our way and we want to forget about not being able to find work, we’ll just feel worse afterwards, both physically and emotionally.
3. Pulling All-Nighters. It might seem like a good idea to burn the candle at both ends so we can spend more time finding a new role, especially if we’re currently employed and trying to balance our existing post with our job hunt. However, missing out on sleep takes its toll on the body, even if it’s just for a night here and there. This kind of short-termism might help us fill out a few more application forms in the here and now but we must remember that job seeking is often a long-term activity and it’s pointless to run out of juice before we’ve even really started.
4. Book Holidays. As miserable as it sounds, it’s easier to stay at home whilst job hunting. We all need a break once in a while, but if we book that expensive holiday and then land a job interview that coincides with the dates we’ve blocked out, it can be a hassle to cancel everything and try and get refunds. Of course, some employer organizations may be understanding enough to re-arrange the interview, but as there is no guarantee that they’ll do this it’s best not to risk it.
5. Get Married/Move House. As great as the benefits of marriage or a new home often are, the process of getting there is also often very stressful, disruptive and expensive. Do you really want to be putting yourself through that whilst also going through the equally potentially stressful process of a job hunt? We’re not saying cancel the wedding or moving day if you’ve already booked the date, but if you’re just starting out on your job search, try and put off any other major life transitions until you’ve landed your new post.
A final tip:
When you are job searching, it can help to be as specific as possible. If you are seeking roles through recruiters for example, see if there is a specialist recruitment agency in your particular field. For example, if you want to get into the field of payroll, check out payroll vacancies specifically from agencies focusing on this sector.