Being out of work for a long time can eventually take its toll on your confidence. Finding the motivation to carry on applying amid mounting piles of rejection emails can be an uphill struggle.
You must not lose hope, however. Landing a job you enjoy depends to a large degree on luck, but there are certain things you can do to greatly improve your chances of finding gainful employment in a job you enjoy.
1. Update Your Skills
The first thing that a prospective employer will look for when they come to review your resume is whether you have requisite skills to do the job for which you are applying. If you do not possess these skills, the chances are that you will be overlooked in favour of someone who is better equipped to do the job. As you apply for jobs, you will probably notice that the same skills tend to crop up in postings over and over again. Identify these skills and then take a course of action to acquire them. Updating your skills or learning completely new ones has never been easier in the digital age, with thousands of university accredited courses and specializations available on platforms such as Coursera for very reasonable prices.
If you have little experience in the sector in which you are applying for jobs, you will need to think about how you can get some. One of the best ways to do this is to volunteer at a charity. Charities are always on the lookout for people to help them out. It does not matter if you are a manual worker or a trained bank clerk; there will be an organization that could use your skills. Voluntary work and the skills and experience gained from it are attractive to employers and prove that you are dedicated and passionate about working in your chosen field.
3. Guerrilla Applications
Most people limit their job search to applying for jobs through the conventional channels. Instead of simply applying to jobs by filling out forms and sending your resume and cover letter through online company recruitment portals, try reaching out to people directly. You already know the industry you want to work in, so do some research into some companies that you would be interested in working for. Use tools like LinkedIn to find individuals in senior positions within the organization and fire off messages and emails to them inquiring about possible openings. At best, they may value your initiative and offer you a trial shift. At worst, they will probably try to help you by referring you to useful job boards or openings they have heard of.
While panic and feelings of failure may be periodically plaguing your thought-processes, it pays to remember that the probability of finding a job is overwhelmingly in your favour providing you persevere with your efforts. To swing the tables even more to your favour, keep yourself occupied by being proactive and following the courses of action detailed above.