Every job search requires some level of self–awareness; it allows you to be in tune with your skill sets, your valuable experience, and your greatest strengths and challenges. A person often commences a search with a certain level of self-awareness, and through the process, develops a greater, more accurate sense of self. Much advice is given to job seekers and it comes in various forms. Our friends, family, coworkers, hairstylists, you name it, all have their fair share of in–person advice and words of wisdom to give. Then we add the internet. 3, 5, 7, no 10 steps to constructing a perfect resume. Top 5 resume templates. 20 words every candidate must include in their resume. Admit it– you were hoping these were hyperlinked.
It is human nature to be a bit obsessed with information and perfecting work. However, the only way to perfect a resume, cover letter, or interview process is to authentically and accurately convey what an employer should expect from hiring you. The best way to do this? Become more aware and knowledgeable of YOU. Here’s the simple self-awareness process:
Take time to…
- process your interests and passions
- process the positive and negative personal impacts of your experiences
- identify skills developed as well as skills you would like to develop
- identify challenges you must work on and an action plan to do so
- identify strengths you undoubtedly have (and do not have)
What happens when you skip this step in the search? Chaos.
Many job seekers have the “give the people what they want” approach in order to get the job, seeking out any and all quick guides to success. Instead of listening to oneself and taking time for self-reflection, a person ends up seeking answers from anyone and anything. After 15 different top 10 ways to construct a resume, 10 things to always put in a resume, 10 things to never put in a resume, and then realizing two things one article said never to include, another article said you must include, you’re exhausted and quite clearly “over it”.
By not skipping the self–reflective step, you take time to be honest with yourself and your experiences. Seeking advice after completing this step makes the advice more effective. Your brain (after Starbucks) is then able to personalize the advice received from the outside. You’re able to look at various resources with a more critical eye, have a better sense of self to agree or disagree with the advice, and respectfully either accept or deny the advice as being applicable to you.
Be mindful that even the top career advisors can only speak so much before it ultimately becomes their hearty, well-intended opinion. Consistencies are most certainly powerful and often hold substance when you are looking for helpful information. Even so, personalize, personalize, personalize! What has helped 80 job seekers may not work for you, but maybe what’s worked for seven job seekers can help you.
Employment and employee seekers alike are going to have different perspectives and notable consistencies from diverse experiences; so at the end of the day, on some level, everyone is correct. Therefore, it is important to identify, from the most educated and well-intended advice you’ve received, what most directly applies to you, your work, and experiences. Be self-aware in your resume-writing, job searching, life living. Healthy self-awareness builds courage, confidence, and authenticity. Take time for reflection, be honest with yourself and others, and enjoy the rewarding results of doing so.