Top 5-Get over it!

Finish line, crossing, resume, employment, rejection, interview process

Dear readers,

I have a confession. I like the articles on Linkedin. They are free, motivational speeches from successful people (I wonder why none of the Featured writers are people actually looking for a job, such as myself, hmmm). I like the articles when they are exactly what I am thinking because they make me feel like I am on the right track. I like other articles because they tell a story about someone that claims that he/she was stuck in the same situation as myself. Then there are the lists. “Top 5 things how to ace an interview”, etc etc. These are all reruns of the same list that was written by someone with common sense. However, I am going to make a list of anything at least once a week. My lists however, do not always include motivational talk.

This list this week includes ways to get over the fact that your application was rejected.

1. Positive thoughts. Yeah, it sucks. Yes, it sucks worse because you had already imagined yourself as a happy camper at that work, dressed well, telling jokes by the coffee machine and being very successful. But you know what, you probably thought the same before you took your current job. Honestly, you hit a bump and you got roughed up but it can only get you better for the next application. Even diamonds need to be cut and polished.

2. Do no be embarrassed. Similar to a relationship breakup, we sometimes are afraid of telling people about our rejection. They might think that we are losers, that could not get an interview or a job. This is mostly because human beings are self-centered. We constantly believe that everyone are spending their brain power on us. Everyone and their uncles are thinking about us and changing their perspective of us every moment. Everyone are keeping us in check and monitoring our steps, failures and successes. Geez, they are not. It is just your head. Our friends and family hold us in higher regard than we do. Seek support and let them know that, yes you are disappointed and hurt but you will bounce back.

3. Get back on the dance floor. According to  love gurus, the best way to get over your ex, is to get back on the market. Spend an hour finding another interesting job, go and meet people, apply for positions (you should never stop doing that), get other people to read your resume. Get in the mix, now!

4. Get organized and working. Your work is sometimes left alone and unattended after focusing (reads obsessing) on a specific interview process for a long time. Get back into your job, even if you desperately want to get out of it. Why? Because this is going to do at least two important things: a) It is going to get your confidence back and b) it is going to get you a better resume. Both of which are helpful for your next interview.

5. Eat and exercise. No joke, this helps. It gets the negative thoughts out of your head. It pumps you full with happy enzymes. The best thing is to train for an event, 2K, 5K or 10K. This is extremely helpful to get things into perspective. Getting your dream job is just like a marathon. Few people can finish it without some preparation. You will have to train for it, starting smaller and than increasing. You will become tired. You will want to give up. But in the end, crossing that finish line will be worth every single victory.

Do you have another advice for me? Leave it in the comments. 


Introverted Postdocs

Dear readers,
I think PhD students and most postdoctoral research are introverts, even if they are not outside of work, I think that our work forces us to be some kind of introvert types. We are struggling with our OWN project, we will have to find ways to do that by ourselves. This becomes more obvious when I watch students give their first talk in front of a group. Hell! my own first research meeting was horrible, I was not able to even speak clearly, throat was dry and I could feel the pearls of sweat on my forehead. Anyway, due to this we (introverts) do horrible at networking, its like pulling out my own teeth with a screwdriver. However, this is what I am doing to overcome this horrible problem:
1. Force yourself to talk to a stranger.
Hey, I am not saying that you should talk to the weird person at the train station! He smells for a reason. But try to have a chat about the weather, riding a bike to work etc. I have tried to do this every day for about a month and it works like a charm and has helped me in a lot of ways. For example, I talked to this guy this morning about the setup of the train car, why the seats were facing each other, since nobody wants to stare at someone else for the whole train ride. Sometimes people just say “aha” and I just leave it at that. Fair enough, don’t overdo it…then you are only a bad smell away from being that weird person at the train station.

2. Linkedin stalking.
Linkedin is interesting to me. Not because I think it works beautifully but it is a true test of curiosity. As a member, you can see who has looked at your profile within the last week. This is a good tool to get noticed. I have found all the recruiting people I talked to, all the hiring managers and looked at their profile. This will mean that a) they get my application and b) they will get a notification about someone looking at their linkedin profile at the same time. Voila, its that person!

3. Business cards!
I personally think that us postdocs in science are not taught well how to interact in the world. I remember going to this course dinner event and every MBA gave me his business card. Of course being from the other dimension, I thought: “What a douche!” But I see now how efficient that can be. I have just made up my own business card with my contact details and a QR code on the back with my vCard and linkedin profile. So if I get an informal interview, I am going to be sure to give that person my business card.

Bench is calling, gels need to be run.