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Just a Dash of Warrior Mode

Who is at fault for the down economy, slow recovery and lack of jobs when you need one? Upon whom should you inflict indignant rage and ruthless revenge to make things right so people can find jobs faster? Who is the enemy and how will you deal with them?

Hold on a minute. Do not go looking for civilian jobs while in warrior mode. Your job during transition is to focus on yourself. If you take on more battles, you open the door to becoming bored, burned-out and de-motivated. Switch to civilian job search mode, but with just a dash of warrior mode added.

In civilian mode, people are patriots and indebted to veterans, but they are more concerned about their own survivability and success, not anyone else's. Nor do they share your same sense of urgency. Very few people care more than you do whether you find a job. In fact, most employers have forgotten how to be courteous when it comes to returning your phone calls and emails - even if you are a customer.

Unfortunately, you will not find the same level of esprit de corps in the civilian world of work as you did in the military. Long gone are the days when loyalty and honor were important between workers and employers. Every worker has an individual purpose and a plan to achieve it as a self-directed worker or entrepreneur. In both scenarios, a fulfilling life and meaningful career depend on you, not the government, employers or anyone else.

Time is your enemy. Your duty is to persevere in finding work quickly despite all of the challenges posed by the slow recovery. Your weapons include credentials, experience, resilience and resourcefulness. Your mission is to cause other people to help you and hire you. Pride and honor come not from the mission itself, but from landing the job and continuing to receive a paycheck and pay taxes until you achieve your purpose.

About that dash of warrior mode, I am referring to mental toughness or your ability to create a psychological edge to succeed while handling the demands of a difficult job market. For example:

  • Focused Concentration: Begin with an optimistic mindset. Keep your thoughts focused on what is going right and getting what you desire. Do not engage in negative self-talk or dwell on mistakes. View setbacks as stepping-stones to forward progress and self-improvement.
  • Self-Assurance: Believe in yourself. Compete for jobs without doubt and fear of failure. Maintain high confidence that you have the strength to meet new challenges, take calculated risks and will deliver your best performance and superior results.
  • Composure / Resilience: Maintain self-control. Accept adversity as inevitable and resolve to bounce back quickly when setbacks occur. Roll with the punches, and stay mentally calm when dealing with the pressures of competition and the lack of feedback and clear directions.
  • Perseverance: Resolve to succeed. Do not become your worst enemy. Maintain your will and determination to stay ahead of the competition and function without regard to your circumstances. Exercise methodical discipline to avoid slowing down or giving up too soon, and to work beyond your comfort zone.

Because warriors are renowned for their mental and physical toughness, veterans should have a leg up on their competition for jobs. Trying to function with a beat down attitude is why many civilian jobseekers are losing momentum and giving up too soon. They were never trained how to develop their mental toughness.

The key to a successful transition is learning how to adapt your mental toughness to the business world. The good news is that it is much easier to dial down your warrior mode than to turn the dial up. With just a dash of warrior mode, you are more prepared for your transition than you give yourself credit for. Go easy on those mere civilians.

Other Jeff Garton Articles:
Are You Mentally Tough for Employment?
What the New Jobs Package Should Include
Jeff Garton Article Archives

Jeff Garton
Jeff Garton is a best-selling career author, organization consultant, career coach and speaker. He specialized in Human Resources for the Philip Morris Companies where he led the global staffing functions for Kraft Foods and the Miller Brewing Company.

Jeff is noted for pioneering the field of Employment Mindset to achieve Career Contentment. These topics show you how to have and enjoy a meaningful career despite challenges and circumstances that can't always be made satisfying. His groundbreaking research, published works, and innovative training programs are helping struggling workers and the unemployed rise above challenges posed by the stagnant economy and difficult job market. His efforts to increase people's hope, optimism, and resilience have been featured on Fox Business, ABC Sunday Morning, NPR Radio, the Wall Street Journal, Modern Medicine, Chief Executive Magazine, and Chief Learning Officer Magazine.

In addition to servicing his corporate clients, Jeff is on a mission to expand the existing job search training currently being provided to returning veterans and their spouses by the Department of Labor's One Stop Career Centers. His Employment Mindset training goes beyond the same old employment tips and tools used to find a job, and teaches you how to fulfill an employer's unpublished expectations related to right fit and chemistry; things that if you don't know, you don't get the interview or job offer.

Jeff lives in Chicago with his wife and two teenage sons. You can visit his website at www.careercontentment-thebook.com and his Facebook page at www.facebook.com/jobseekersuccessmindset. If you would like more information about Employment Mindset training, or would like to voice your support for veterans to receive this new training, send an email to: jeffgarton@careercontentment.com.

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