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December 22, 2015 / Stephanie Anderson

10 motivational gems to fuel your 2016 job search

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It’s a job seeker’s market in many industries, which means 2016 is ripe with opportunity for those looking for new positions. If you’ve been pondering the future, it’s time to stop daydreaming and start taking action. The beginning of the new year is the ideal time to jump-start a job hunt, and these 10 tips will provide just the motivation you need.

1. Partner with a mentor or career counselor
Want an edge? Find someone to hold you accountable for your search and support your goals. A trustworthy mentor or career counselor will keep you sharp throughout your search.

“It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.” — Lou Holtz

2. Set aggressive yet achievable goals
Searching for and securing a new job in two weeks would be amazing, but that is an unrealistic goal. Set smaller daily and weekly goals while keeping your eye on the prize.

“Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.”— Norman Vincent Peale

3. Prioritize preparation
Take time to update your resume, fine-tune your LinkedIn profile and join an industry association. Be prepared for interviews and know your most marketable skills. Preparation is key.

“Luck is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity.” — Oprah Winfrey

4. Celebrate quick wins
Job search wins don’t include only the interviews and offers. Be proud of small victories, too, such as submitting an application at a dream employer. These tasks represent your hard work and dedication.

“Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out.” — Robert Collier

5. Go beyond the minimum
When you’re done for the day, always do one more thing. Comment on a LinkedIn post, shoot an email to a former colleague, or read an educational blog. It will speed up your job search.

“Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.” — Thomas Jefferson

6. Apply for dream jobs
If you’re extremely interested in a job and you have some but not all the required skills, apply anyway. You’ll never get the job you don’t apply for.

“Anything’s possible if you got enough nerve.” — J.K. Rowling

7. Network daily
Your professional network is one of your biggest assets during a job hunt. Make sure to do something every day to expand this important group of people.

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go with others.” — African proverb

8. Believe in yourself
Keep your confidence shining bright, even if your job search lingers. Surround yourself with positive people who believe in you, and be sure you believe in yourself.

“The real opportunity for success lies within the person and not the job.” — Zig Ziglar

9. Take breaks
The best job search strategies require daily activity, but that doesn’t mean it has to take over your life. Ensuring you have time to decompress will energize you for your search.

“Taking time to live life will only inspire your work.” — Unknown

10. Learn from failures
Always take time to learn from the jobs you don’t get. There are lessons in each rejection and it’s important to use each as motivation for the future.

“It’s fine to celebrate success but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure.” — Bill Gates