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  • Writer's pictureRos Evans

How to keep your focus when job searching

Updated: Aug 19, 2018

These days it is easy to apply for jobs with online recruiters. All you need to do is upload your CV and write a covering message. Easy- too easy! The problem is that recruiters are inundated with applications and now that ATS (automated tracking system) is used CVs are screened for key words from the job description and person specification by algorithms. Even if your CV passes that stage it is said that recruiters spend, on average, six seconds reviewing your resume. Long gone are the days when you received an acknowledgment and a polite rejection letter. So job search can be a dispiriting process if you get no feedback.

I was recently coaching a client who is unemployed with ADHD and was struggling to keep momentum, motivation and focus with job search. We worked to identify his specific goal and measures of success and to develop a daily planer, checklist and log of activities. My client worked out that his maximum concentration times to remain really effective and on task was 20-25 minutes. To aid his focus and concentration he needs other activities to stimulate his ADHD brain which craves variety and stimulus and this is also imperative to keep him motivated and positive. We coined the term “fun time “activities. These vary from jogging, popping out to the shops, online gaming, listening to music, phoning a friend to simply going into the garden for fresh air and natural light.

On his daily planner we have 3 sessions of 1.5 hours broken into 3 phases of 20-25 minutes with a 5 minute “fun time “activity in between. Setting alarms to stop work and get back to work after these breaks helps my client get back on it.

The other key thing is breaking his main goal into objectives for each day with specific outcomes for each session e.g. send of application to X or review emails of vacancies and short list. At the end of each day my client writes down what has been achieved this helps focus on the positives. He also sets the goals and objective for the next day. This is critical so in the morning the plan is in place reducing indecision and procrastination.

Being task focused but using time effectively is important for everyone engaged in job search. It can be a lonely and dispiriting time, but planning your time and building in “fun time “activities will help you remain positive and resilient. Good luck.

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