Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Inspiration for Sticking With Your Search

A rare and inspirational piece, this interview with David Horvath, the creator of Ugly Dolls offers truth about sticking with a dream, a project, a passion, anything that means something to you.

I say the truth because Horvath clearly describes exactly what it took for him to realize his dream of building a company around a product that not too many people understood at first. He has gone through the mill, been ground down, and come out finer for it. He is grounded in reality.

The truth is there is no "easy way" to be successful. Success comes from hard work and perseverance, persistence, stick-to-it-iveness, "never give up even if you need to take a short break to rejuvenate."

It doesn't matter that Horvath was building a business while you are searching for your "right fit" work. The same lessons apply, because you are engaged in a quest to do work that matters to you. His work took the form of his own business. Yours takes the form of a job. Searching for a job requires just as much perseverance as does building a business.

Discouragement and seeming dead ends abound in a job search. What are you supposed to do when you feel like nothing you do works? Take a page from Horvath and all the job seekers out there: try something else. If you can't think of anything, ask someone else and be open to their answer instead of resisting it by saying something like "I already did that!" Whatever you did was done in the context you were then in. Things are different now, even if only slightly. Most importantly, you know how NOT to do it and so perhaps can be more effective this time.

Here's an example: you contacted someone from your old job for help and got nothing but "I'll keep my eyes open." Now, go back to that person. This time, though, go back to update them on your search. Tell them how you've learned from your experiences. Let them know what exactly you are looking to do - what challenges you love to solve for a company and what impact you know you can have on a business or organization. When you're more specific, you might get more specific help.

It's worth a try, isn't it?

When all you see are dead ends, take a little break. Go to a museum. Cook something delicious. Walk in the park. Ride a bike around the block. Play with a child or cat or dog. Get out of your head! I'll bet you come back refreshed and with a new idea for how to progress.

The point is to understand that this search is worth all the effort, and that it does take continuous effort. Focus on what energizes you in the world of work, what makes you want to get up in the morning. Leave no stone unturned. And be kind to yourself in the process. Know that you will be successful in reaching your goal. When you are doing everything right - once, twice, three or more times - the question is not "if" but "when" you will land your "right fit" job.


Kerry Noone said...

I was just telling a friend of mine who lost her job yesterday (but has been looking for a new opportunity for months) to take a deep breath and find her motivation - I'll be forwarding this post on to her. It will help to keep it handy so she can read it when she's feeling the stress of her (now) more immediate job search!

nish said...

I have been reading your post regularly. They are highly informative and helpful.