How to Manage Job Search Stress

Today in the guest post by Danny Kariuki we explore the effect of stress on job search and get 10 tips for landing a better job. Some of these tips are almost counterintuitive, yet when you understand the incentives you will probably want to follow them.

Since you are here, you must be having a clue about how devastating job hunting can be: especially if you are jobless and broke. Truth be told there is so much about searching for a job that can bore you. It is a whole tedious process. That starts from looking for a job that matches your profile, sending applications to companies that you have shortlisted, waiting for feedback, preparing for an interview if you are lucky enough to get positive feedback and finally getting all those butterflies on the day of your interview.

If you are unable to manage the anxiety and stress that comes with that, there is a likelihood it ruining your chances of securing that job in the first place.  It is, however, important to note that the entire process can be stressful but most of the time people allow themselves to fall prey of the situation. Allowing stressful thoughts, for instance, what would happen if your application was turned down or whether you qualify for the post, is what makes it stressful while it does not need to be. If you do not handle it, you might end up falling into depression.

You need to understand if you do not meet the criteria, there is always another job that you will. If you are invited for an interview, a basic skills test might be required: something that should not at all stress you out. The rest will only need adequate preparation, and things fall in place. It is essential to take care of the pressure, as the long term effects may not be desirable and may interfere with your daily life. The following are ways in which you can reduce and manage the stress and anxiety that comes with a job search.


Set realistic goals

While job hunting, most people look for a job that will lead them to achieve personal, financial and career goals. What leads to stress is if one fails to meet the said goals. Whereas it is good to be ambitious and look at a bigger picture, sometimes it can be demotivating: if you are unable to achieve all of that within the set timeline.

It is for that reason that you are encouraged to further break down the main goal into smaller ones. Why? Well, if you are able to achieve the other goals, you will be more motivated to work towards the end goal. It is also essential that your goals are realistic and measurable. It, however, does not mean you have to call yourself short.

Have a support system

It can be a close friend or family. Someone you can trust. At this point, you might want to disassociate with someone who will only make you feel worse about the situation. You should have someone you can talk to. A support system that will be there to encourage you when you need it give you proper advise and offer you help when you need it without judging. It has to be someone you can trust. It will always come in handy in stress management during a job search.


You cannot imagine how much a 10-minute meditation session a day can do to your physical and mental well-being! If you are undergoing a job search stress, then meditation is something you should definitely go for. Meditation will for one, help reduce stress. Also, it is an excellent way of going about improving your sleep, increasing focus and improving your relationships.

Well, as you stress about how you are going to pay your bills and how long you will have to endure being broke, you can take it out on people that are close to you. Such may drive people who can actually support you away. What happens next is that your stressful experience will get worse as you lack someone you can talk to. Meditation will help you put everything in control.


What has exercise got to do with reducing and managing job hunting stress? Well, truth be told, everything! Just like meditation, exercise has excellent news for both your physical and mental health. Losing a job might quite disorient your schedule. This may also result in stress. You should try as much as make your life be as it used to. Exercising is yet the best way to do it.

One you will have to wake up early like you used to. As much as you might not be as busy as you used to while at work, your schedule will be back to normalcy to some extent. More so, exercise by itself is also an effective stress reliever.

Stay busy

As you wait for the next interview, you might end up sitting around in the house more than what can be considered healthy. It might not end up well for you. You will be too bored and end up immersing yourself into habits that will delay the possibility of you getting a job.

Occupying yourself will from one distract you from the fact that you no longer have a job: which is the primary cause of stress. Find a new hobby, try out a few things at home and equip yourself with more knowledge through research. This will be the best time for improving your skills and keeping stress at bay.

Get other ways to make money

Are your bills stressing you out? Well, the good news is that you do not have to let job hunting stress and being broke get in the way of you being happy. There is plenty of ways in which you can make extra bucks outside a payroll. As much as it may not amount to what you would usually be getting in a day job, it can always take care of a few bills.

You can find a part-time job like working online, and other side hustles to make money. Who knows? You might end up being a pro and make enough not to need a full-time job anymore! As you work side projects, you will also stumble upon more opportunities.

Be optimistic

Pessimism will only cause you more stress than there ought to be. As you send your applications, instead of worrying about not being able to meet the criteria, think about how much your years of experience in the field will give you a plus. When you are invited for an interview, be positive about how much your intellect will impress the panel.

Negative thoughts will weigh down your confidence: something that you really need while sending the applications and attending the interviews. A lack of confidence and negative thoughts will make you miss out on that post and cause you more frustrations. Be positive even if you do not get positive feedback. There is always a job out there waiting for its ideal candidate: you!

Have persistence

Do not allow stress to win. Giving up is an indicator of stress getting the better of you. If you have created a plan for the job hunt, stick to it. Persistence will always pay. If you are persistent in sending your applications, you will increase your chances of getting invited for an interview and for you getting a job too.

Vamping your efforts will encourage you, boost your confidence and rid of anxiety and stress.

Evaluate the job market

One way of managing stress is seeing that your efforts are paying off. Well, chances are, you have been applying for the wrong jobs. You need to take your time to study the job market before you send out applications. Seeing that you are not getting replies or even positive feedback can be stressful.

Assessing the market will increase your stakes. How many vacancies are available in your town? Would you instead send applications to a different state that has more opportunities in your domain? What are the requirements for a given job? Being able to answer those questions will put you in a better position to make a proper and effective job hunting strategy. Proper planning will make your job search more successful.

Pat yourself on the back

It is always advisable to appreciate your efforts. Regardless of how small the steps are, let them encourage you. Instead of being stressed out and discouraged by not passing the interview, you should give yourself props for being able to make it there in the first place. Not everyone was able to make it to the shortlisted candidates.

That way, you will also be encouraged and motivated to improve in areas that you feel might have given the winning candidate an edge over you.

Job hunting may never be enjoyable. However, the tips above will go a long way in ensuring that that fact does not get in the way of your mental well-being. The strategies will be very useful in managing job search-related stress and anxiety. Use them for a stress-free job hunting experience!

Bio: Danny Kariuki

Dancun has been working with writing-challenged clients for over five years now. He offers ghostwriting, ghost editing, coaching, and SEO writing for businesses that want to see their sites at the helm of Google SERPs. His education background in communications and public relations has given him a concrete base from which to approach different topics in various niches. His writing skills can be confirmed on, where he is a top-rated freelance writer. He especially enjoys writing website and blog content for startups and established businesses.

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