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How to overcome the current fear of job hunting

BBC News recently reported that employment recruiters are seeing up to ten times the normal number of applicants for advertised positions, along with fewer jobs being advertised compared with figures prior to the pandemic.

This means that the current market is very tough for jobseekers and many of those fears we have connected to employment searching are bubbling to the surface. Fear of the unknown, limiting self-beliefs and “what if” scenarios running through your head might be holding you back from that awesome new opportunity.

R13 have identified some of the top fears our past and present candidates have expressed to us with the hope that we can give you some tips to help overcome them. As they say, “Fears are nothing more than a state of mind”.

Fear that you are not qualified for anything

Scrolling through the many jobs advertised online can be intimidating and when looking at the requirements you may feel like your CV just isn’t matching up. But everyone is qualified for something and you are probably more qualified that you give yourself credit for.

There is no harm in trying and job descriptions are written with the ‘dream applicant’ in mind. So, when looking through, if you see yourself matching a large % of the core skills and you feel as though you can confidently overcome objections they might have (as in skills/experience you don’t have), then apply anyway. The worst they can say is no and as long as you aren’t applying to be a surgeon when have a marketing degree, you’ll be fine.

Fear that the competition is better than you

Competition within the job market is pretty tough right now and that can be incredibly intimidating and even lead you to think “why bother? There will be someone out there who is better than me.”

Competition is a part of a life, so to help with this fear, make sure you are presenting yourself as best as you can through properly tailoring your CV to the role you applying for, writing a great cover letter/email, doing the extra research and presenting why you are a good match. By doing this you will help prove you are suitable for the job you are applying for and your personality will shine through.

Working with a recruiter is also a great way to help push yourself ahead of the competition as we work to understand who you are as not only a potential employee but also as a person. We have a direct line to the hiring manager and can present your key attributes, experience and skills to our clients to help get your foot in the door of some great organisations.

Fear of not knowing how to sell yourself

Interviews are not something we do every day, so going in and trying to sell yourself can be hard as most of us aren’t natural born salespeople.

To conquer this fear, our best advice would be to practice. We aren’t used to selling ourselves, so try doing practice interviews with friends or family to get a feel for how you might want to answer questions. Make sure you research and prepare as much as you can before your interview, then you can be more relaxed and will be able to get across why you are the perfect choice. (if you need more support check out our interview support section or this blog on the different types of interviews).

Sometimes though, no matter how much you prepare you may just have a bad interview but don’t beat yourself up about it as it happens to everyone. What you can do is reflect on the experience and learn for next time.

Fear of rejection

Even when you prepare for interviews, do all you can to sell yourself and get really excited about the job, you may still get rejected and this can be a big blow to your confidence. No one likes the feeling of rejection and it is perfectly understandable why you may avoid job searching because of it.

But rejection happens to everyone, so you need to remember that it is not personal, seek feedback where you can, stay positive and look for ways to improve for your next interview.

Fear of change

No one likes change. Everyone fears the unknown. But we cannot let that hold us back from taking new opportunities because you never know what might be around the corner.

To help overcome this fear, make sure you are applying for job opportunities you are interested in, with companies you feel match your values, ethics and long-term aspirations. Choosing the right employer will help make the change easier because you will be moving onto something that is well matched and that excites you.

Prior to starting, you can have conversations with you line manager to see what they can do to help ease your transition into your new job.

Fear of getting a job but not enjoying it

You’ve made it, you’ve secured that new job but now you aren’t sure if it’s for you and now you feel like you’ve wasted people’s time.

Like we mentioned, its so important to fully research the job/company and only apply for opportunities you are really interested in. This will help to make sure that when you start something new, you’ll actually enjoy it. Part of this process can also include asking plenty of questions at interview stage to make sure you fully understand what’s expected in the job role and to get a real feel for the company.

Job searching can be scary, whether its your first job or your 10th job, and can make us incredibly anxious but try to push those fears to the side because there will be a job out there for you even if it takes you a little longer to find, it will be worth the wait.

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For more information and support regarding employment issues, please contact rthirteen today at info@rthirteen.co.uk or via phone on 01603 338313.