I’ve written before about how the job hunting process can be a roller coaster of emotions and today I’m feeling one of its lows. Emotions are so powerful in that they can completely cast a shadow or a ray of light throughout the course of our every day.
I read a lot of books and articles on the practice of mindfulness that are largely based on the practices of Buddhism. The idea behind mindfulness is that you can gain control of your emotions and negative thought patterns through meditation and continued focus on the present moment. Those who recognize how difficult this process is, explain that this ‘freedom from self’ or complete detachment to emotions and thought can take a whole lifetime to achieve.
Detachment from my emotions and negative thought would be a most handy tool to have in the job hunting process. Many external events such as receiving rejection letters, not finding open positions at targeted companies and waiting on unanswered emails can quickly build up anxiety within me that I may never be hired again. Just that one thought can bring on a spiral of negative thoughts. When I take a moment to step back from the anxious thoughts I can clearly define what I’m feeling as a loss of control and helplessness.
But the rejection emails, unanswered emails and lack of relevant job openings are just part of the process. I can choose to take them personally or not. (I’m really striving for the latter.) Most people who actively pursue their dream job will encounter these events. These things don’t just happen to me. I have to remind myself of this.
I also believe in the power of calm persistence in the pursuit of any goal, whether that be landing a new job or achieving enlightenment. There’s a distinction I’ve found between pushing for something in a desperate attempt and calmly and consistently working toward something. Calm persistence is so often underestimated because most people give up before it bears its fruit.
I won’t give up and I hope you don’t either.