Have you ever heard the saying, “Fear is not your friend”? Most of us have, and in most cases, it’s true. Fear can hold you back from pursuing relationships and experiences that have the potential to enrich your life. While fear is usually a foe, it can occasionally be a friend to those who know how to harness it and use it to their benefit. This is especially true of job seekers.
Are you on the hunt for a great job? Are you struggling with fear in any area surrounding the topic of career? (For example, are you afraid you won’t find the job of your dreams, or, if you do, that you won’t be qualified for it?) If so, you need to learn how to relate to fear in a new way.
Fear Is Not the Big Deal You Think It Is
Most peoples’ knee jerk reaction to fear is avoidance. They encounter a situation that is scary, and they run the other direction. What an overreaction this is. Fear is, after all, just a feeling. It can’t do anything to you except shake you up. With this in mind, try to see fearful feelings for what they are – harmless waves of energy that pass through your body. The more you try to figure out what these feelings mean or what they can do to you, the longer they will hang around. Once you view them as annoying-but-innocent feelings, they will likely diminish.
Use Adrenaline to Motivate Yourself
What is it about fear that makes your heart race? The answer is simple: adrenaline. According to medicinenet.com, adrenaline is “a stress hormone produced within the adrenal gland that quickens the heart beat, strengthens the force of the heart’s contraction, and opens up the bronchioles in the lungs, among other effects. The secretion of adrenaline is part of the human ‘fight or flight’ response to fear, panic, or perceived threat.” When faced with a burst of adrenaline, most of us would rather flee than fight. We typically use our adrenaline to get away from a threat. If you are being chased by a bear, fleeing is the right idea. However, if you are making a decision about whether or not to apply for a job that intimidates you, facing your insecurities (fighting) is a better choice.
Scare Yourself Into a More Productive Job Search
If you’ve been unemployed for a while, you are probably familiar with the way laziness creeps in and hinders a job search. The best thing you can do to get yourself out of this funk is use fear/adrenaline to your advantage. Choose to pursue jobs that you think are a little over your head, but that you’d love to have—jobs that scare you. If you are called in for an interview then go, even if you are scared senseless. Use the adrenaline from these situations to motivate yourself to continue your job search until you are employed.
Another powerful way to convince yourself to get on the ball with your job search is to imagine what life will be like if you don’t become more assertive. Will you end up in a dead-end job you hate? Will you live a below-average life? Simply painting these pictures in your mind can sometimes be enough to get you off of your couch and into a hiring manager’s office.
How have you let fear hold you back professionally in the past? Share your comment with us below.
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