As many of you will know, I spent 6 months applying for placements until I finally got one. Job hunting was extremely demotivating at times, and I was exhausted by December. But, despite this, I kept applying and going for interviews and assessment centres. Eventually, I got an amazing opportunity to work for EA as the marketing communications intern and will be starting in July.

Although I found one, I know people who didn’t even try to get one due to intense competition. I also know people who have tried but still haven’t found one. I also know some people who, like me, were lucky enough to get one. So many people just gave up as it takes so long to apply and sometimes the companies dont even respond. Here are my top tips to staying motivated when looking for a new job.

Think of the positives

Applications, interviews, assessments centres and ability tests are all things which can be practiced. As you’re applying, you’re practicing the skills needed for all of these steps, so when you do finally find the role of your dreams, you can get it. If you’re still in university, it’s vital you practice before you go out into the graduate job market, so take every opportunity as seriously as possible.

Any feedback you get from companies can also help you learn from mistakes you might have made. Maybe you were a bit too quiet in a group task? Did you get a surprise interview question? You can think of a great answer for the next time. It’s all part of your personal development and learning.

Recognise achievements

You managed to get an interview? Great, that’s fantastic. Your CV must have been good enough to get the recruiters attention. Your assessment centre group was the only group for the role? Wow, you’re one of the 8-10 people out of hundreds that was chosen to attend. You clearly have an amazing CV, it probably wasn’t anything to do with you personally as to why you didn’t get the role. Just remember that you are in fact amazing, that role might just not have been a perfect fit. Remember recruiters are trying to find someone who fits the company, role and team exactly. They’re not always based fully on your work experience.

Schedule down time

One of the main things about being exhausted when job hunting, is that you seem to be running around everywhere. I had to travel down south so many times, to the point where I’ve had to learn about the London Underground and where all the connecting stations are. When you’re rushing around everywhere, please just give yourself some time to calm down. Even if it’s just an afternoon or an evening. You dont want to be interviewed when you’re sleep deprived and cranky.

Practice and ask for advice

If you’re at university, your careers service can help you with job hunting. Whether it’s helping perfect your CV or practice interviews. They are also trained to give objective feedback, whereas friends and family may be more subjective. It’s also good to practice being interviewed by someone you dont know. Take any advice given constructively and work on making yourself even better. If you’re not at university, try asking friends and family for help, but pick someone who can be constructive.

Treat yourself

Whenever I was travelling to an interview, I would treat myself to a coffee and cake from a coffee shop. I also treated myself with chocolates, a new purse, and new earrings. It’s nice to give yourself gifts because you’ve achieved something that day. This goes back to the being positive and recognising achievements points.

 

Do you have your own ways to keep yourself motivated?

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I am most definitely introverted. For my entire life, this has been a problem for people. From teachers who want me to speak in class (even though I always did well in school) to interviewers who assumed I couldn’t do my job because I’m ‘too shy’. I’ve been told to be louder, to speak up but why should I? I understand that I’ve needed to work on public speaking – I get that. But why should I force myself to change who I am? There’s so many things about me which I cant and dont want to change…

I need time alone

Sometimes I just need a little time alone to help re-energise myself. I’m not meaning to offend if I decline plans, or if I decide to leave early. I just need to be away from people for a while. I’ve already wrote a post about how being alone is a good thing for people.  But, unfortunately, I still get a bit of grief for wanting to stay home for a while.

I’m independent

I’m the kind of person who doesn’t need to be around people all the time. I never used to, I used to have to get people to go for lunch, to get my nails done, go to the cinema etc. But not now. I’ve grown a lot since I was 16, now I dont need to be around people all the time. I live alone and I support myself.

I’m a listener

I’m a lot more happy to listen to people than to talk myself. I also hate small talk. I don’t want to talk just because we’re both there, especially if it’s mindless chatter. Although, I will always be there if you need to talk to me about something. But please, don’t discuss the weather and traffic with me.

I may seem awkward

I often struggle to make conversation, especially if I dont know you well and also if it’s over text/messenger/whatsapp. It’s one of the reasons why I havn’t made many friends through blogging, it’s because I dont know where to start. This goes side by side with me being more of a listener.

It’s just my face…

I have a resting bitch face. It happens right? I cant help that my face looks like I hate everyone. Once people get to know me, it becomes a lot easier to see past it.

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We all go through stress, it’s a natural part of life. As the exam season draws nearer, me and most of my friends are already starting to feel a bit stressed. There’s also so many different ways to help reduce stress. Some may work for you, some might not, but it’s all about trial and error.

Writing

When you’re writing, it makes you focus on one thing and one thing only. Whether you’re writing in a journal, writing a to-do list or creative writing. They all help you to focus your mind. Journals can help you pinpoint exactly what you’re stressed about, and it could help you to ‘let go’ when you write about it. Writing will also help you to think about it more logically, this means you can solve the problem easier.

Stress writing notepad

To-do lists will also help you to organise yourself. If you’re, for example, stressed about uni, making a to-do list about what you need to do for uni this week will help. Making sure you know how to write a to-do list without stressing yourself out more is also vital – don’t overdo it. Creative writing can be an outlet which helps you both focus your mind, but to ‘input’ your stresses into something you like doing. If you dislike writing though, creative writing could also make you feel worse.

Meditation

Meditation has been around for so long. It’s one of those things that people talk about a lot, and some people don’t believe it works, some do. I personally believe that deep breaths are important and a simple trick to help calm you. Although I dont have a full-on meditation practice. Setting aside 10-15 minutes a day can help to make you more mindful in your everyday life.

Exercise

Everyone knows that exercise decreases stress levels. Chemicals are released in your body to make you happier during and after exercise. But, often you dont have the motivation to actually start exercising. Or at least I dont. It doesn’t have to be running or weight lifting though. You can take a brisk walk through the countryside or along the beach. Yoga is always a simple, non-strenuous exercise. Simple stretches can often help as well. Just to keep your body moving, your muscles active and your heart rate up.

Stress Fix Exercise and meditation guide

Colouring

There’s been so many adult colouring books coming onto the market in the past few years. Similar to writing, the action of colouring helps to focus your mind. Becoming mindful, similar to when meditating helps to calm you. You can purchase a book, or you can print off your own online. A quick Google or Pinterest search will bring up a variation. You can also just sketch or doodle freehand – although if you’re similar to me, you’ll get more stressed because you can’t draw what is in your head.

Pamper yourself

Candles

Whether it’s with a bath, next to your bed or just on the side, candles help to relax you. The soft light helps to calm you, in a similar way of watching the sunset. Often people use candles when meditating as focusing on the flame helps to calm the mind. Also, the excess of scents now enables you to pick a calming fragrance more personal to you.

Bath or Shower

A warm bath or shower helps to lower your heart-rate and gives you some time to think. This gives the sense of calm, as if your worries are washing away. Whenever I feel particularly stressed I make time for a hot shower before bed so I get to sleep a lot easier. It’s also always nice to fill a bath and read a book when you have time.

Body Lotions

The act of pampering yourself and making time for yourself often helps you feel calmer and more in tune with yourself. Whether you spend 10 minutes massaging moisturiser onto your legs or only 2 minutes using hand cream. The simple act of trying to look after yourself will help.

Drinking Tea

Drinking warm drinks has been scientifically proven to help relax you due to lower cortisol levels. Cortisol is often known as the stress hormone. Tea in particular helps the most, although most caffeinated drinks help. This is probably why you crave that cup of coffee when you’re at work.

Stress Fix Tea Bags

Chewing Gum

Research has suggested that chewing gum can help relieve anxiety and improve your overall mood. It’s also great at making you more alert, which is why it’s great around exam time. It’s also one of the most subtle methods to reduce stress. Instead of stretching or meditating in the middle of the office, just popping a stick of gum in your mouth seems a lot less out there.

Having a snack

Healthy snack

If you’re like me, you’ll often reach for food whenever you’re stressed out. Foods full of magnesium, such as nuts can help to reduce cortisol levels in your body. A handful of nuts or seeds can not only curb your hunger, but it’s a healthy way to help de-stress. Fruit and veg are also healthy snacks to help relieve stress. Some of the most stress-busting foods are green leafy vegatables, blueberries and bananas.

Chocolates

Although dark chocolate is the best option, all chocolates have the ability to reduce cortisol levels. Grabbing a chocolate bar before that big exam or presentation can help calm your nerves.

De-Stress with StressFix

Stress Fix

At the beginning of the year, some friends and I decided to create StressFix. StressFix is a personalised box, where you can pick which items you would like in it to help destress. It can be for yourself, but it also works as a gift. A lot of the methods of de-stressing I mentioned above are included in the box. We have candles, an exercise and meditation guide, notepad to write in, a blank logo design to colour in with pencils, hand lotion, chocolate, chewing gum, stress ball and tea.

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As I sit writing this, I’m thinking of how tired and unmotivated I’ve been feeling recently. Whether it’s to do with this blog, my uni work or my internship. I think it was as soon as I got my placement offer. Finally, I’d got the one thing I’d been working so hard for this semester. I’d been losing sleep, missing uni and missing my friends. But as soon as I got it, all the tiredness overcame me all at once and I was out for the count. All I’ve been wanting to do is stay in bed.

Now It’s heading towards exam season, and I’m trying to catch up on everything I’ve been trying to get motivated. I started to think of all the women I look up to, and how they must have all felt this way too. But, they never let their de-motivation get in the way of their goals. Even when they hit the lowest of the low, they dragged themselves up and got shit done.

Diane von Furstenberg

“You are the one that possesses the keys to your being. You carry the passport to your own happiness.”

Malala Yousafzai

“When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.”

Jennifer Lopez

“Doubt is a killer. You just have to know who you are and what you stand for.”

Emma Watson

“It’s not the absence of fear, it’s overcoming it. Sometimes you’ve got to blast through and have faith.”

Arianna Huffington

“I do not try to dance better than anyone else. I only try to dance better than myself.”

Angelina Jolie

“If you don’t get out of the box you’ve been raised in, you won’t understand how much bigger the world is.”

J.K. Rowling

“We do not need magic to change the world, we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to imagine better.”

Madonna

“I’m tough, I’m ambitious, and I know exactly what I want. If that makes me a bitch, okay.”

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When I started this blog I was inspired by the beauty, fashion and lifestyle bloggers. And so, I wanted to blog about beauty, fashion and lifestyle. As much as I love shopping, and make-up and reading about other peoples often extravagant lifestyles, that’s just not me. I don’t have an amazing sense of style, and I very rarely posted about it . My makeup is usually natural looking, and not noticeable in photos, so I only really do reviews on individual products or hauls rather than the stunning looks I drool over on Instagram. My lifestyle is also fairly boring. I’m a university student, with a lack of funds and a lack of time to go have a wild life to share.

My first shift in mindset was merging this blog with my book review blog. My second shift was when my University contacted me about reposting my blogs about university life. The realisation that I wrote better when I was writing about something I knew dawned. I know a lot more about a books, as a passion I’ve had since a child, over my love of makeup which has only manifested the past few years. University life was more attainable for me to write instead of it being about styling clothes. I realised I didn’t have to fit a mould in order to get people to read my blog.

Going forward, I’ll be posting whatever I feel like writing. Without the feeling of guilt if I havn’t posted in a specific category in a while. Or rushing to put together a post which I dont even  feel like writing because I feel like I should. Here’s hoping that leaving the paradigm of a lifestyle blog behind will allow my writing style to evolve, and my blog to improve naturally.

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