I’m starting my job hunt.
I’m exploring new opportunities.
I’m letting people know that I’m back on the market.
I’m investigating next steps.
Ugh, ugh, ugh and ugh. I hate all of those sentences. Not because I hate the process of looking for a new job, but because the phrases we’re conditioned to use while in the midst of it … mostly suck.
They just don’t sit well with me because they sound so cliche, so over-played. But at the same time, they are also all immediately understood; and when you need to get right to the point and only have so much time to capture a person’s attention, relying on the familiar is typically the ideal.
So here I go again, putting myself out there in the hopes that something I see or someone I meet will align with my goals and expertise.
But here’s the cool new twist: I’m approaching this the same way as I would traveling a new country — it’s an adventure. It’s not a chore. It’s not an obstacle. It’s not something I dread.
It’s an adventure.
I cannot predict where each “Hello” might lead me, and that is pretty exciting. “Hellos” have led me to some fabulous memories while on the road traveling; the same goes during the job search process. I now have more than 15 years of experience, including several job hunt periods (that also served as high personal growth periods), that tell me so.
Today I zipped off a handful of email “Hellos” this morning to people I’ve never met before, people I found through LinkedIn or the Northwestern University network. And tonight, I received a handful of responses back from people interested in meeting or with new leads and suggestions. So that’s promising.
Today I also had two in-person meetings. One with the HR team at a growing company in River North, another with someone in my field I met during my last job hunt period. Both were positive — it helped that I walked in positive and curious, of course.
I have no idea where the progress of today will go, but the possibilities excite me. While I’m bracing myself for the exhaustion, the rejection and the moments of self-defeat — because those days will inevitably come! — I feel good right now, as I launch into this aggressive exploration period. I’m cautiously optimistic that by continuing to say “Hello,” and relying on curiosity and intuition as my compasses, I’ll land exactly where I need to be.