Last week, we talked about how job searching is an awful lot (emphasis on awful!) like dating. Now, let’s explore how job searching is like a marathon.

A marathon is a running race where people voluntarily choose to run (or jog or walk) 26.2 miles consecutively. And they have to pay money for the privilege of doing so! Crazy right?

Although it’s a running race, a marathon has almost nothing to do with racing. There are very few people on the planet that have the ability and have done the intensive prep work to be in contention for winning the race. Nearly everyone who enters a marathon is doing it to test their limits, endurance, and sanity!

Pretty sure you can see how the job search is exactly like a marathon. Anyone who’s looked for work recently knows it’s not for the faint of heart. It takes more effort, energy, and emotional fortitude than you ever expect when you start. Most of us think (or more accurately hope) that we’ll hit the apply button to the first posting that catches our eye and they’ll see what a talent they have on their hands and hire us immediately.

Just like a marathon, the job search rarely goes exactly according to plan!

I’ve completed several marathons and a bunch more half marathons (you’d know I wasn’t bragging if I shared my finish times!) and not a single one of those events went off without a hitch. There was the time I forgot my running shorts and had to run in my pool cover-up bottoms (not recommended!). There was the time the start of the race was delayed due to excessive lightning and a torrential downpour on the course. There was the time I drank a glass of beer offered by a random spectator and immediately regretted that decision! The list of ailments, injuries, and idiocy is long.

But when testing your limits, endurance, and sanity whether in a marathon or in a job search, you’ve got to be ready to adjust!

It could be as simple as changing your pace to apply to more job postings. It definitely involves reaching out to people and activating your network. It could be an overhaul of your resume and LinkedIn profile to help you get the results you want (I know a great career coach that specializes in this! Spoiler alert: It me.)

The point is, you need to remember that the job search is a marathon rather than a sprint. Your search requires sustained effort over time to get where you want to go. There will be challenges and setbacks; what separates the successful people from everyone else is their willingness to adjust.

My favorite part of any running race I’ve done is the gathering of runners after it’s over. It’s the camaraderie of a group of people that all in some way pushed against or past boundaries. It’s where we share the stories of what went wrong and how we found a way to make it to the finish line in spite of the challenges.

You’re creating those same stories right now in your job search. And everyone is excited to hear the challenges you’ve overcome when you finally get that offer!!

#PositiveAction Do something this week that energizes you so you’re ready to give your full effort to your job search!

And if completing a marathon is on your bucket list, I loved The Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer (affiliate link). 


Image by Th G from Pixabay

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