Finding balance in your job search

In: Job & Career Tips

15 Mar 2010

The following is a guest post from Jim Horrell.  Jim is an active member of the LinkedIn group, a current job seeker and a blogger on his way up.

This weekend I went for a walk.  Although there was snow on the ground, the sun was shining and there was a light wind.  It was cold outside but I knew the fresh air would do me some good.

There is a park not far from where I live and a path which runs alongside a river.  I have visited this park several times and have found walking to be a beneficial way to clear my head, get back to nature, and enjoy some peace and quiet.

As I started the walk, I felt good because exercise brings energy to my body.  At the south end of the park is a small waterfall.  A short distance away from the waterfall I observed a large group of ducks.  As I walked over the bridge to the other side of the river, I noticed that although the ducks were close to the edge of the waterfall, not a single duck was swept away by the rushing water.

I began to wonder, why?  The current of the river was strong, yet the ducks look perfectly calm.  Not a single duck appeared to be struggling to avoid being swept away.

After thinking about the ducks for a short time, I figured it out.  The ducks have balance.  Each duck knew exactly how much energy it must use to tread the proper amount of water so it does not get swept down the river and over the waterfall.

Job seekers are like the ducks.  We need to find the right combination of networking events, interviews, face to face meetings, number of hours we spend online, and time spent in other ways to keep our employment search balanced and on track.  If too much time is spent on one activity, potential opportunities are missed from the other techniques of finding and pursuing employment possibilities.  There is no precise formula which will work for each person.  Each individual needs to find the right mixture of activities for themselves.

Although job seekers will not be swept down the river like the ducks at the park if our employment search activities are not in balance, we can easily slip over our own mental waterfalls and become frustrated or burned-out with the stressful activity of the employment search process.

You can read Jim’s blog here and follow him on Twitter here.

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