Job Search: Dealing With "No"


For the past two years I've consistently had freelance work readily available. I managed to secure two consistent contract jobs which helped me with my bills, debt, transition to the west coast, and my simple lifestyle. One of the companies was a start-up and although we started strong, funding became an issue which led to a mutual separation until funds become readily available for them. The second company saw a decline in revenue and placed me on hold for a month of two. I didn't worry because, mentally I had prepared myself for this worst case scenario.

Now although two major contract jobs were gone, I still have small and consistent work available to me. But within this time-frame, as I actively job hunt for larger projects, I consistently get told "no." And it is difficult for me to believe.

Now the "no" isn't verbally spoken to me, it's the non-response to my email inquiries or the interviews which lead to no follow up call. Some people aren't built to take "no" and when you're on that receiving end of that "no" day after day it becomes exhausting.

I have been employed more than I have been unemployed. I am a firm believer that "every 'no' you hear, eventually becomes the one 'yes' that you need." But awareness of things being alright down the line is different from responsibilities piling up currently. So how do you cope?

As I mentioned earlier, the first thing that happens to most people is they become mentally exhausted. You feel undesired, unskilled, un-hire-able. Rejection attacks your self-esteem. 

You aren't any of these things realistically, your work history proves it. Here some helpful ways to stay positive during a dry work spell:

  • Review your resume—Let it remind you of all you've accomplished in the past. Also give it a quick look over and tweak some of the language. Resumes can always use a pick-me-up.

  • Review job descriptions—Let them invigorate you to see all that you plan to accomplish down the line. Most importantly, make sure your resume and cover letter reflect their needs. Sometimes we apply to jobs we have no business applying to. Make sure your qualifications match their needs.

  • Budget—Trim the fat. Find ways to reduce your cable bill, adjust your eating habits, conserve electricity, and get rid of things you pay for monthly that you don't need currently. Bye bye Spotify Premium.

  • Stay Active—One of the best ways to wallow in self-pity is to stay home all day and keep your same routine. Exercise, head to the park, go for a walk, and find free events in your town to keep your brain moving and maybe even network.

  • Maintain healthy relationships—When our self-esteem starts taking a whooping we tend to seek isolation. Don't. No one will love you any less because you're on a tight budget. Good friends and family will support you mentally with kind words and monetarily if possible.

  • Stick to your system, but flow as needed—You know what works for you. If you have a system, stick to it. Systems are what allow athletes to become champions. If something has worked for you, use it. If it doesn't adjust and recreate as needed.

There will always be challenges when you transition through life experiences. The most important things are self-reassurance, self-support, and self-love. Never forget who you are and when the time is right, everything will play out as it is meant to. 

Need support on career transitioning? Feel free to contact me for life and career coaching support and services. Enjoy a free 30-minute session!