Looking for work is never fun, but a new study reveals that how successful you are depends a lot on the attitude you bring to the process. People who come into it with a know-it-all attitude are more likely to get discouraged and give up more easily than people who approach the whole job hunt saying, What can I learn from this?“Emotions and job search intensity change during the job search process,” explains Serge da Motta Veiga, an assistant management professor at Lehigh University and the study’s lead author. “Job seekers experience ups and downs as they navigate this stressful process.” These fluctuating emotions affect your motivation and how hard you look for a job, the authors explain. A candidate who approaches their job search as an experience they can learn from — which the authors call “learning goal orientation” in the study — are better off.While you might think that the rigors of looking for a job would be inherently demotivating, it turns out that it’s not the stress that gets you, but how you cope with it.Taking on the potentially daunting process of landing a job with an attitude of being willing to learn from it insulates you from those emotional fluctuations that can derail you and make you more likely to slack off than send out that next batch of resumes or follow up on that promising lead. “We found that a learning orientation helped job seekers deal with the ups and downs of the job search, and maintain or even increase their job search intensity,” de Motta Veiga says. In fact, people who want to learn from their experiences — for better or for worse — actually become more motivated when facing stress. On the flip side, the wrong attitude can leave you idling at the starting line.
This Is What’s Really Killing Your Job Search
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