Job searching can feel like an uphill battle at times, and hearing constant rejections or ghosting can make it hard to stay motivated. One day you’re on cloud nine with an amazing interview, the next day you’re getting a “we went with a more qualified candidate” email. Ugh! The constant uncertainty can be exhausting, but I have some advice on how to keep your spirits up during this journey. Let’s dive into how to stay positive during your job search.

How to Stay Positive During Your Job Search

Dear Emily,

It feels like no matter what I try, my dream job doesn’t want me back. I’ve applied to over 50 jobs, customized my resume to all the hacks the latest career TikToker touts, and have been ‘networking’ without asking for a job – while I’m making connections, it doesn’t feel like I’m getting any closer. How do I stay motivated and patient?


Another hopeless jobseeker

How to Stay Positive During Your Job Search

How to Stay Positive During Your Job Search

Dear Another Hopeless Jobseeker,

Let me assure you, it’s not just you. The current job market is incredibly competitive. I’ve had the privilege of speaking with many highly qualified and exceptional individuals who share the same frustrations. It’s not about your capabilities; there are numerous factors at play that make the process more challenging than ever. Let’s consider a few:

Mass layoffs and hiring freezes have created a surplus of candidates.

AI tools and bots are flooding job boards with resumes, making it harder to stand out.

Hiring processes have become slower, and interviews often stretch out due to various reasons.

Summer vacations can delay hiring decisions when the decision-makers are OOO.

On top of it all, there’s an overwhelming amount of career influencers spreading fear and misinformation on social media, making it difficult to maintain sanity.

When You Feel Discouraged in Your Job Search

The job search can be disheartening, especially for those who seek control and certainty.

Sure, we could settle for any job, and we might land one quickly. But will it truly be fulfilling and meaningful? I doubt it. More often than not, it’s the journey filled with challenges that make the destination worthwhile. The longer it takes to reach the top of the mountain, the more we can appreciate the view.

So, what can you do when it feels like your dream job doesn’t want you back?

Pause. Breathe. Remind yourself that your success is inevitable. Tap into the courage, resilience, and determination that you already possess.

Landing a job isn’t like a two-day Prime delivery; it takes time. The average job search lasts around six months, which is why having a six-month emergency fund is recommended.

If desperation, fear, hopelessness, or anxiety have taken control of your mindset, remember that there’s nothing inherently wrong with you. Your dream job does want you. But it resides in a different realm — one of power, courage, alignment, grounding, self-assurance, and hope.

So tap into that realm today. You have full access to it.

You have proof in the past that you experienced a moment of feeling courageous, resilient, and determined – all of these feelings are accessible to you today.

Shifting Your Perspective

As your coach, I’m going to have you take a moment to grab a pen and paper.

Make a list of all the things going right in your life, instead of focusing on what’s lacking. Give yourself credit for all the things you’re proud of but don’t acknowledge enough. Recognize the support you have from your family, friends, colleagues, and community. Reflect on the times when you felt powerful, courageous, aligned, grounded, self-assured, and hopeful.

Place this piece of paper somewhere you can review daily (and especially right before you step into your interview – it will serve as the booster you need to shake those interview jitters!).

Try to start each day with a moment of gratitude. After all, where focus goes, energy flows, right?

As you shift your internal perspective, your external reality will start aligning with it.

Embrace a Growth Mindset

Instead of seeing the job hunt as a source of stress and frustration, let’s try seeing it as an opportunity for personal and professional growth.

The narrative you tell yourself can transform your outlook. Remember, your current situation is a stepping stone, not your final destination!

Acting as If

Remember that your success is inevitable. Change your mindset from “if I land a dream job” to “when I land a dream job.” Allow yourself to visualize all the amazing things you’ll experience when that day comes. Imagine what you’ll wear, how you’ll start your mornings, and how you’ll celebrate.

Now ask yourself: What would this version of you do today?

Would they be proud of their resume and LinkedIn profile or is this something that needs more polishing?

Would they exude confidence when discussing their past achievements or is this something you need to work on owning?

Would they believe in their abilities to network, interview, and negotiate, or are these skills that need refining?

More Ways to Stay Positive and Motivated in Your Job Hunt

Set Bite-Sized Goals and Tasks

Aiming to land your dream job in the next week sounds amazing, buuuttt that’s probably a bit of a stretch with the average job search taking closer to 5-6 months.

Breaking your job search down into bite-sized, achievable goals can keep your motivation high without running you into the ground. Checking off tasks on a to-do list feels great!

Start with small goals like writing the bullet points for just one of the past jobs on your resume.

Then work on the next job, and the next, and so on. Then spruce up the formatting and have someone look it over for a second pair of eyes (pssttt.. This is is something I can help with!)

Next week, maybe you’ll plan to research roles online and see who is currently hiring.

Then, maybe you’ll reach out to your network to see if you have any warm leads or set up some informational interviews with someone who works in your dream industry or job.

Not only does this approach make the job hunt seem less daunting, it also provides a clear roadmap, marking out your journey one step at a time.

As a result? You’re less overwhelmed because you only have to tackle the next step in front of you, and you’re more motivated because you get to keep finishing small tasks instead of having one giant “GET A NEW JOB” task that could take months to complete.

Celebrate the Small Wins

Picture this — you’ve spent the day hard at work on your job search, researching potential jobs, sending solution messages to decision makers, personalizing your resume, the works.

It might feel like you’ve been working hard and don’t have a lot of results to show for it.

But each one of these tasks is a sign of progress and one step closer to landing your dream job.

You deserve to celebrate the small wins along the way, not just wait until you get an offer letter!

Did you fine-tune your cover letter, personalizing it for a specific job? That’s a win!

Sent out a solution message to follow up on a job you’re excited about? Big win!

Each step forward, no matter how small it may seem, is a sign of your hard work, determination, and progress. So give yourself a big round of applause and a pat on the back because each small victory is bringing you closer to the big win — landing that dream job!

Network, Network, Network

You’ve probably heard over and over again that networking is key to landing your dream job, especially in the current job market.

And it is important, but maybe not for the reasons you think. Networking isn’t just about you GETTING something.

It’s also about what you can offer. It’s a beautiful cycle of give-and-take that lays the foundation for strong, professional relationships.

Maybe you come across a job opening that’s perfect for someone in your network. Shoot them the link!

Found an interesting article? Share it!

Someone in your network posts on LinkedIn? Comment for support!

When you offer support, you strengthen your connections, and you nurture a network that’s likely to offer help when you need it. It’s a win-win, fostering an environment of positivity and mutual support.

Being helpful to your own network can also help you feel more motivated about the job search as a whole when you can see other people on a similar journey also taking action alongside you.

Find Support in Your Job Search

Similarly, job hunting can sometimes feel like a solitary journey, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

There are whole communities of cheerleaders out there, ready to lend a hand, offer a word of encouragement, or simply lend an ear when you need to vent.

Your family, friends, and loved ones, for instance, might be a source of support for you. They’re there to cheer you on, to remind you of your strengths when you’re feeling low, and to celebrate every win with you.

Then there are professional mentors, individuals who’ve walked this path before and are brimming with insights, guidance, and encouragement. Whether they’re former bosses, managers, or coaches you hire, their words of wisdom and advice can be invaluable.

Community and support is a key part of my Happily Hired Formula program, so I would encourage you to join us if you’re looking for more support around your job search!



1. How do I stay positive during a long job search?

Stay focused on your goal, break it down into smaller, manageable tasks, and remember to celebrate your progress every step of the way. Connecting with a supportive community (like in Happily Hired Formula) can also work wonders in maintaining positivity during your job search.

2. How can I stay motivated during my job search?

Setting achievable goals, acknowledging every tiny win, and reminding yourself that each step is bringing you closer to your goal can fuel your motivation.

3. What should I do if I feel overwhelmed with job searching?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s absolutely okay to take a break. Get your body moving, go for a quick walk or stretch, sit in stillness for a few minutes, or practice a new meditation from Youtube. Don’t forget to take care of your body and mind in this process!


Ultimately, when you have a goal that you truly believe is possible, it ignites excitement, hope, and motivation. It pushes you to work towards something greater than yourself. It transforms each rejection into a “not yet.”

Every step you take, no matter how small, is a step forward.

So chin up, enjoy the journey, and keep going – your dream job is just around the corner!

So, what bold action will you take today in your job search?


If you’re ready to find a better role for this season of your life, check out my FREE on-demand masterclass to get the freshest strategies on how to go from feeling stuck to landing more ALIGNED interviews & offers.

How to Land Your Dream Job Free Masterclass

How to Land Your Dream Job Free Masterclass


Emily Liou and her team believe that everyone can land their dream job. Want to find out more about how you can wake up happier on Mondays? Whether you like to work at your own pace or have a group to hold you accountable, there’s a Happily Hired job search program to shortcut your job search today.

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