While certain indicators of the economy seem to be perking up, as of late, there are still thousands of job seekers out there soldiering through the frustrations/challenges of a protracted job search.  With the Wall Street meltdown now approximately a year behind us, it appears that many people are reaching the point where they’ve burned through a large chunk (if not all) of their savings, severance, and unemployment benefits — and need to seriously “shake things up” a bit in order to stay focused and energized in their continued quest for a new position.

These motivational challenges, in fact, are ALWAYS the big sticking point in these kinds of situations.  While the “tactics” of finding a job aren’t terribly difficult to master, it’s far from easy to put yourself out there, day after day, and face consistent rejection from the marketplace.  Those people who steel themselves to these market realities, however, or develop and practice successful coping strategies for staying positive, are generally the folks who will get through the process most quickly and experience the most success.

In one sense, too, I suppose that job searching could be defined as an “insane” activity, if one accepts the common definition of insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results.”  Clearly, a big part of job hunting is repetition.  Even if you’ve already sent out 30 resumes without getting a single nibble from employers, there’s always the chance that resume #31 will hit the bullseye.  And I also still believe that a great many job searches aren’t effective simply due to a lack of hustle, activity, and focused effort.  But again, for those people who have been job hunting a looooong time and are really hitting a wall, emergency routine-breaking measures are sometimes needed.

Along these lines, I’ve typed up a series of 15 motivational/reflectional techniques that I’ve had clients deploy, over the years, with some measure of success.  You’ll find all of these ideas captured in a “Getting Unstuck: 15 Ideas to Re-Energize Your Search!” handout that I’ve made available here, via my website.  If you’ve never been to this part of my site before, you’ll quickly realize that this file is the only one on the page that isn’t password-protected, but I’m more than happy to share this particular handout with my blog readership at large since I know there are many people who could benefit from this topic.

If any of you have additional techniques or methods you’d be willing to share on this subject, please feel free to send them along!  To date, I haven’t found a single foolproof method (if I did, I’d patent it) that is guaranteed to beat the job search blues, but I’m confident that trying out at least one of these suggested activities — if not several of them — can make a big difference in the outlook of most folks.  Good luck!