But we'll have more success and will feel overwhelmed less often if we adopt a more easy partnership with the job search process and agree to hang out with it for the longer haul.
A continuous improvement, or kaizen, approach to your job search ensures you build momentum without burning out. You make continuous adjustments to your job search strategy along the way as you discover what's working and what's not.
The idea is simple - take very small, incremental steps toward your goal every single day. Focus on the daily small steps.
The reason that I especially recommend a kaizen approach to job seekers is that searching for a job is a fearful experience, and a kaizen approach does a lot to reduce your fear.
When you are just focusing on thinking about your very next tiny step and are implementing it, your mind is distracted away from the bigger picture, "Oh my God, what if I never get a new job," thoughts and fears.
Also kaizen is the antidote to entropy, a state that job seekers do not want to find themselves in. Says Ingrid E. Cummings, author of The Vigorous Mind: Cross-Train Your Brain to Break Through Mental, Emotional and Professional Boundaries, "Nothing can ever defeat entropy, but keeping it at bay via small incremental steps consistently taken - that's cookin' with gas; that's the strike zone."
Our culture emphasizes big, dramatic change and swift action to enact it. But really, most significant changes are the results of days or weeks or months of taking consistent, small, incremental steps. And focusing on the small steps keeps you more flexible and able to adapt to changes and setbacks along the way.
Don't worry about planning the next 50 small, incremental changes you want to do, either - just plan the next few and then see where you are and plan the next few, and so on.
I'd love to hear: How will you take a more kaizen approach to your job search?