Not sure what to do next to move your job hunt forward?
Sometimes, when looking for new job, you may wonder how to schedule your time — should you reformat your resume, spend time researching companies, work on upgrading your skills, look for volunteer opportunities, or call old contacts.
It happens to us all that when we’re not sure what to do, we overwhelm ourselves by listing dozens of things we could be doing. But the more ideas we have, the less we typically do.
And if you are seeking a job in the GTA, be it a full-time position, contract work, or temporary job, you need to work at it. A to-do list can help you get moving.
Recruiters at The Bagg Group, who have decades of experience in helping candidates find the best jobs in the GTA, offer these tips for how to make an effective to-do list.
Don’t make a mile-long list: Timothy Pychyl, a professor of psychology at Carleton University in Ottawa and a procrastination expert, says it is easy to put all our time and energy into writing a list. As a result, the list itself becomes the work of the day.
So don’t list the dozens of things you could be doing. Instead, choose three tasks and put them in order of priority.
Break down the first priority task into small steps: Consider the most important activity you need to accomplish –it is probably the task that seems the most difficult to you. Write down all the steps necessary to complete this task. Make this list of steps the list that you work with.
Be specific: For example, if you need to find your old resumes to produce a new one, write down: Find past resumes..
Stick to one task at a time: Tackle each step, one after another. Don’t give a thought to the other items on your day’s to-do list until you have completed the item you are working on.
Now do this: There’s a wonderfully named app called Now Do This (www.nowdothis.com) that is a great example of a simple, but effective way to work through a list. With this app, you make a list of what you need to do in order of importance. Now Do This will show only the first item on your to-do list, at the top of a clean, empty screen. It is only when you click on the Done button that the next item on your list appears, again on a clean, empty screen.
“Now do this” is a terrific thing to say to yourself to keep you focused. It is less stressful and far more productive to just concentrate on the one task at hand.
Work to a schedule: Looking for a job is a job. Put in set hours, schedule in breaks, and keep to your timetable.
Reward yourself: When you tick off an item from your to-do list, recognize that it’s an accomplishment. And at the end of the day, tell yourself and anyone who asks that you had a great day.
Feeling good about what you are doing as you look for a job is important. When you network and meet with interviewers your good spirits can make all the difference.