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Trying to get back into job search mode after a holiday break is difficult.

Regardless of whether you are looking to make a career move or just find a job, it can be hard to rekindle your motivation or excitement about finding a new path after a period of relaxation.

The holiday period itself can make it difficult to find work as fewer people are around and often fewer jobs are available.

Job search fatigue can also undermine the process because of lack of responsiveness to job applications or lack of jobs that fit your skill profile. Sometimes the best thing you can do is get free of the computer and get your networks working for you to find that elusive new position.

More jobs are found by word of mouth than by formal application, so working your network is incredibly important.

Back in the 1970s sociologist Mark Granovetter, identified what he called the strength of weak ties.  For him strong ties are your close friends, people you mix with reasonably regularly, while your weak ties are your acquaintances, people you see only rarely or know only slightly.  Your close friends often have similar interests and move in similar circles so it may be harder for them to help you find work.  Your acquaintances by contrast, are more likely to have different interests and move in different circles, so it is through weak ties that you are more likely to find that new job opportunity.

Rather than trawling through job ads, maybe find that stack of business cards buried at the back of the drawer and use a different approach to motivate your job search.

You might also consider attending industry or association events.  These days many are now online which means that you can meet people from the comfort of your own home. While providing the opportunity to expand your network, they may also help you re-engage with your current sector, or with the area that you are looking to move into.

If you aren’t inspired by a work-related event, engaging in events related to a hobby or interest may also be a good place reinvigorate your search. An environment that is less like work and more like doing something you love can provide relief from the disillusionment of being constantly on the job hunt.  At the same time, it is not impossible that someone you meet might help you make a connection to get that dream job or inspire you to use your talents to develop your own business doing what you love.

Volunteering is another avenue into a job or more meaningful work.  It allows you to put your skills to good use while doing good in the world, at the same time as you build a wider network.

Whatever else you do keep learning.  Seek to update your skills or reskill.  The best motivator on the planet is the sense of satisfaction and accomplishment you get from mastering something new.

What do you think? Make a comment below

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