These 3 Words Are Stalling Your Job Search
Are you out of work? Or are you overworked, in a career you hate and want out? With more than 84 percent of Americans surveyed saying that they want a new job, chances are that you are unhappy and want something better. What you may not realize is that three words are holding you back.
Early in my coaching career, I was taught about neuro linguistic programming and how our thoughts impact our ability to achieve. It's a fancy term for negative self-talk. For some strange reason, humans spend more time with negative thoughts than positive ones. (Ha, who knew, right?) The result is a form of analysis paralysis. We often don't make any decisions until it feels safe to do so. And when we are backed into a corner, our animal instincts kick in with a "fight or flight" approach to problem-solving.
Unfortunately, for most of the people who are unhappy in their current career situation but haven't technically hit rock-bottom yet, the result is no action. And no action means no results.
3 Words Holding You Back: I Am Afraid
I run a job search accelerator program. Most of the time, these folks are close to desperate. They join the program expecting to dive right into what's wrong with their cover letter, resume or LinkedIn profile. But instead, I make them finish the statement, "I am afraid..." in as much detail as they can and send it to me.
Why? Those three words are at the heart of every stalled job search and dead-end career in America. You see, your inability to move forward comes from fear. And here are some of the most common fears:
- Making a mistake.
- Looking stupid.
- Finding out you aren't talented.
- Being wrong about what you really want.
- Doing your best and still not getting any results.
Address the Fear, Remove the Roadblock
When you finally open up about the fears and rationalize your situation, you will find a great sense of relief come over you. Often, this cannot be done alone. You need outside influencers who can provide you new, positive self-talk that can replace the negative thoughts. You need support from people who can remind you that your fears are unfounded and unrealistic. But most importantly, you need an objective person you can believe in to say repeatedly, "You can do this and it's going to be OK." When you have this, you'll find it easier to see what's possible in your career because you will no longer be blinded by self-doubt from your fears.
If you want a better career in the next year, you must find a way to work through your fear. Once you have clarity, you'll find motivation to move forward. Lose the fear and you'll feel so much better, it will be easier to do what it takes to get that new job. Otherwise, fear wins and you lose in the career game.
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J.T. O'Donnell is a career and workplace expert who founded the top-ranked career advice site, CAREEREALISM.com. In 2009, she launched CareerHMO, the first on-line career care membership site which specializes in curing chronic career pain.
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