Does your job search look something like this?
You send out your resume and cover letter. And you wait. You count the minutes, hours, and days as they pass constantly checking your email and phone.
You finally get a phone interview! You think the phone interview goes well. But then, you’re not so sure. There was this one comment the recruiter made that you just keep thinking about. Was it positive or negative? You send your thank you note. And wait again. Still counting the minutes, hours, and days. Should you follow up? Is it too soon? Will they consider you a nag or a go-getter?
You follow up, the recruiter writes you a short note back. Hmm. Is this good or bad? You agonize over the email. You ask people you know to read it and tell you what they think. Is it a good sign?
You get asked in for an in person interview! After the interview, you replay it over and over again in your head. The recruiter smiled, that’s good, right? They seemed engaged and enthusiastic. But when you left they just told you they’d be in touch next week. Not too much excitement in that. Did you blow the interview?
And the cycle continues until you find out that you either did or did not get the job.
Let’s face it, we all do it. We over-analyze every single aspect of the job search process. But at the end of the day, where does it really get us?
The truth is if a recruiter thinks you’re a qualified candidate who might be a good fit for the position, they’ll let you know. They won’t forget about you. As long as you follow up appropriately at each stage of the job application process, you’ve done what you can do. Waiting is a part of the process and overanalyzing will only make the process that much more tortuous.
I recently went to hear a talk given by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He gave some sound advice that can be applied to this situation. If there’s a solution to something that’s bothering you pour all your energy into finding it instead of worrying about it. If there isn’t a solution, then there’s no point in worrying about it. Either way the take home message is: don’t worry about it.
Over-analyzing is worrying. And there is no place for it in the job search process.