…counteracting perseveration

Perseveration. It occurs when candidates who are having a particularly difficult time finding a job play their issues and failures over and over in their mind.

“Why can’t I find an interview?…What’s wrong with me? … Why didn’t I do better on that interview?…They told me they were going to call me back and they didn’t.… I thought I was perfect for the job.… They told me they were going to hire me and then they didn’t.…I’ve never had a problem in getting a job before, what’s wrong with me?… I must be doing something drastically wrong.… Don’t these people understand how hard it is?… This just isn’t fair.… I was making that kind of money 10 years ago.… The gal I interviewed with, I should be her boss.… Those people couldn’t even tell a good candidate if they saw one.… I know I didn’t do very well in the interview but that shouldn’t make any difference.… Those people that interviewed me don’t know what they’re doing.”

Pick any one of these statements and read it over and over and over and over again. That’s perseveration. It’s depressing and it is not the way to look for a job.

Everyone who reads this is going to agree that they shouldn’t do it. But they do. And it further depresses them. So, when this kind of conversation in the head begins, a well-grounded candidate will stop themselves and begin this kind of self-talk:

“I knew it was going to be hard, but I didn’t know it was going to be this hard. I have to work harder at getting interviews. I have to do the right things in order to get interviews.”

“I can’t do anything about the past and I can’t do much about the future. All I can do is control what I do right now. Right now, I’m going to take massive action.”

“Let’s see, what did I do wrong in that interview? I need to figure it out so I can correct it.”

“I did the best I could, but I do have to get better. That was a learning opportunity and I’ve grown from it. Now I know things are difficult, but I’ll get better.”

Well, I think you get the point. Negative perseveration leads to nothing but disaster.

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