3 Things You May Accidentally Be Doing to Sabotage Your Job Search
FROM A CONVERSATION WITH NAYLA BAHRI ON THE REINVENT YOURSELF PODCAST
“High achievers say that all they have to do is work harder or outperform everyone around them in order to succeed,” says Dr. Nayla Bahri, PCC, Leadership and Development coach, Columbia University. “But it may not be productive. [My research shows people] do best if they’re willing to do the inner work [before they] open LinkedIn and apply to 100 jobs. Burnout is why it’s not working. People are addicted to interviewing—[to the point where] they don’t want to get out of bed.”
Bahri tells Lesley that you must “start with a practice of reflection—journaling, walking in the woods. Find out what you miss, what you’re glad is over, what brought you great joy, flow, productivity. Then divide your search into thirds: 1/3 applying to appropriate work, 1/3 strategic learning, 1/3 doing the work.” You also have to reframe how you speak. “I rarely talk about jobs,” she says. “I talk about work, which we carry with us. If the work you do in the world is yours, then you have a better chance of saying it’s about me finding a place to offer my work; it changes from a place that needs me to a place where I can add value.”
How Not to Sabotage Your Job Search
Apply to Everything
Think about the time you are able to devote to your career, and divide it into 1/3, 1/3 and 1/3. The first third you should think about applying for appropriate work. To start getting your foot in the door, to start getting a sense of the job market and what interests you and just building momentum. But you really need to give yourself time to do the inner work too, to make sure you’re moving in the right direction.
Network with Everyone
People who thrive post disruption really take the time to network differently, and to talk to people who they know, who they’ve worked with, who are good friends in their community, and ask them questions like, “How do you see me at my best? What am I doing when I am adding a ton of value? Why do you call me?”
Have them reflect back to you how they see you shining. They’re willing to admit they don’t have all the answers, and they reach out to find out how people see you.
Make It about the Job, Not the Work
I rarely talk about jobs, I talk about work, because your work is what we carry with us. The work that I do in the world is what I do. I can do it in the context of a business school, in the context of a company, or in the context of my own practice. It’s a semantic change but I think it represents an identity change too. Because then it’s not about the job. If I lost my job, I didn’t lose my identity. I can keep the work with me. It belongs to me, not the company that I left.