Ask any job seeker who is their biggest foe in job search is and the majority would say Human Resources who don’t return calls, acknowledge applications or post jobs with seemingly impossible requirements.
But truth be told a job seekers worst enemy is themselves and it’s because of what’s called Defensive Pessimism. Defensive Pessimism is a defense mechanism employed to safeguard against rejection. It is when you tell yourself things like: “I won’t get that job, so why apply” or ” why bother networking, there aren’t any jobs open anyway,” or “no one is hiring, so why bother.” All these examples are typical of the internal scripts that run through a job seekers mind that immobilize them in job search and becoming a job seekers worst enemy. These defenses are put up as protection from feeling disappointed or let down.
To overcome Defensive Pessimism it is important to acknowledge it exists and the power it can hold over you. Yes rejection is an inherent part of the job search process however to moving past it requires two things. One is let your job search be driven by facts not speculation or fear and two, remember that amazing things happen just by showing up and making an effort.