The nice thing about being employed is that you have a rigid structure to your day, week and, well... life. Everything else revolves around your job which takes up most of your time and your free time is increasingly valuable and because of this, you use it wisely.
You would think that with lots of free time you would have the cleanest house, be fluent in 8 languages and have written several novels. This is not the reality, which seems strange but productivity breeds productivity. The lack of time takes away any opportunity for procrastination.
The jobseeker feels as if he or she has all day to enjoy a lie-in, take 4 hours for lunch and find an awesome job. But that is not how things work; when you feel like you have all day the things you want to do the least get relegated to the bottom of your priority list.
So what is the answer?! I hear you ask. How can I, a capable jobseeker with a tendency to avoid doing tasks I don´t really enjoy, possibly secure my dream job? Simple...
It seems obvious, but it is essential to create a routine that is practical, effective, demanding and fixed – just like a job. If you are going to take a job search seriously and achieve results that you will be proud of, it is important to recreate the environment of a working day.
Here is a helpful infographic we created to help you through a day of searching for a job. It outlines times to complete each tasks but also has time set aside for self-improvement and rest. It´s tough, but so is the world of work. If you´re used to getting up at 7:30 every morning, your first day will be ten times easier.
Breakdown of the optimum daily routine
7:30am: Wake up and gym.
This doesn´t strictly have to be the gym but exercise is scientifically proven to boost productivity, energy, brain activity and even happiness. So if you have a dog, take it for a run, or go swimming if that´s your thing.
8:15am: Show(er) time!
We have some of our most epiphanous moments in the shower. Think about all of today´s opportunities. It´s the perfect time for a pre-job search pep talk.
Don´t dawdle in the shower – them jobs ain’t gonna find ‘emselves! In England we say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but try and keep it healthy with some fruit – unlike a typical English breakfast. Avoid eating too much and getting sleepy and bloated.
Have a comfortable and organised workspace
9am – 12pm: Job search
Ok, time to get down to the dirty work. Maybe the best way to start the day is to review your CV. Everyday you should be doing more things that could potentially add to your CV, so it may need regular updating. Spend time looking for jobs that you are sure you want and write a customised cover letter for each one. There is little use in peppering the market with a generic CV and cover letter because it will be very obvious to the employer – plus that’s what everyone does. It’s essential to avoid distraction. If, like some of us, you have a slight social media addiction, maybe give your phone to someone else for these three hours - preferably someone you that trust will return it when the three hours are up.
12pm – 1pm: Lunchtime!
You earned yourself an hour. Enjoy a light lunch and maybe even go for a little walk in order to separate rest time from the indoor/computer time.
1pm - 2pm: Search and apply to short-term jobs
Sometimes we need more short-term solutions, especially when we are struggling financially, a problem which jobseekers often face. So dedicate this hour to finding something to carry you over for now.
2pm – 3pm: Learn a new skill
Spend some time learning a new skill to help boost your CV!
3pm - 4pm: Networking
It is important to keep contact with any potential employers, especially the ones that offer jobs which really excite you. If you contact them regularly with a diplomatic and customised message, the better it reflects on you and the more likely they are to remember you. It is also a good time to find new contacts in places like Linkedin. Social media in general is a very useful tool.
4pm – 6pm: Volunteering
This is a great way to boost your CV as a lot of people don’t even think about this as an option; it shows whoever is reading your CV that you have gone the extra mile, and volunteering for something that may have relevance to the industry you are applying to will no doubt offer valuable experience. It also makes you feel good.
6pm: Socialise and relax
Your working day is over, so go and enjoy yourself with your family and friends. You are also likely to discuss your day with them and they will no doubt offer useful advice or, if you’re really lucky, useful contacts.
If something about this day plan doesn’t fit for you then you could personalise it, but the most important thing is to maintain it:once you´ve created it - so make it maintainable, and stick to it. If you haven´t already, then register at Europe Language Jobs now to start the ball rolling.
You will have the pick of ten dream jobs by the weekend!
Jul 2, 2018 by Lee
Hmm! You have almost made a Time Table for the Job Seekers! Keep it up!
Shall appreciate tips on how to Counter Cultural Resistance!
posted 2 years ago by Rajesh
All reads well that Matt, some good pointers there!
posted 2 years ago by James
As a senior I have my own time schedule, but I think this recommendations can work for people, which are not used to organise their daily life.
posted 2 years ago by anonymous
A routine may also be the thing that helps long time unemployed to prevent depression!
posted 2 years ago by Corinna
Seems that day of an unemployed is more busy than day of a person with full-time job :)
posted 2 years ago by Polina
Absolutely agree with it!
posted 3 years ago by Monica
Great advice, my schedule looks very similar as I separate my time into 2 hour blocks and divide several topics and languages into multiple days. For an example, I study German and Politology on Monday and Thursday, HTML5 and Croatian on Tuesday and Friday, and Graphics Design on Wednesday and Friday. I leave Sunday as a day of leisure. Job seeking can also sometimes get dull, but writing down a list of daily goals and completing it tends to make me feel accomplished.
posted 3 years ago by anonymous
As a job seeker I must say it is a tough thing to go on with, but at the same time you learn a lot during the journey
posted 3 years ago by shabnam
Gym is a great advice, also! lol
posted 3 years ago by Jade Augusto
Nice and helpful article, thanks!
posted 3 years ago by Laura