How to Get Motivated and Focus on Finding a Job

Finding a Job Takes Motivation

This article was written during the pandemic when many people were scrambling to make ends meet. The pandemic inflated uncertainty and caught many unprepared with few coping skills to deal psychologically and financially.

The situation caused intense fear that drove people to behave with extreme caution. This experience is the opposite of what is required when looking for work or aiming at a career change.

If your source of income, health, and quality of life feels threatened, it’s hard to dive deeply into looking for a job or reinventing your career. It’s challenging to strike a balance between the need to ensure basic survival and an urge to do something new after the height of this crisis has tapered off.

I’ve coached hundreds of professionals through a career change and the job search process. This experience has taught me that each person’s path is unique, and there are a few simple strategies that can help those living through turbulent times and feeling little to no motivation to focus on finding a job or reinventing their careers.


Looking for new opportunities is not a laid-out linear process. It’s an unavoidably, messy journey of self-exploration and experimentation that requires patience and persistence. Embrace the process of exploring all the potential possibilities, the path to your next job or career will be anything but direct – it may be winding, meandering, twisting, eventually guiding you to your destination in a roundabout way.

The threat of the current crisis will add complexity to the job-search and career-change process because it will prolong the natural state of a transition, which can feel very uneasy as it swings between holding on, letting go and free falling. This distressing state is a necessary part of the journey, and taking advantage of this time to take care of your “inner business” is more beneficial than engaging in busy-making self-improvement efforts.

Give yourself permission to embrace the process of exploring and take some downtime to replenish your energy and motivation. Take quality time to explore and release the grip of urgency to have all the answers. It’s what will help you utilize and integrate what you learn, plan for the future, maintain a connection to your values, and express your authentic self.


The conditions surrounding the coronavirus can allow you to try new things or learn new skills. The current conditions require innovation, adaptability, and flexibility, of course. You don’t have to limit your ideas and projects to build your desired career or job change.

Be creative and consider engaging in crisis initiatives or community volunteer efforts. Do new things, meet new people, learn about yourself and your preferences, dislikes, and what brings out the best in you and ignites your motivation. Feel free to daydream, but balance that with active experimentation to ensure it leads you to gainful employment and career fulfillment.

Self-reflection doesn’t happen alone or in isolation. It needs to be supported and nourished by interacting and speaking your thoughts, feelings, dreams, and desires with others. Social distancing can make this hard, but with a bit of initiative and creativity, you can find ways to connect with others to share what’s on your mind and heart. Consider working with a certified career coach and counselor.

When it comes to finding a job or changing careers in this time of crisis, remember that the time is now to claim the lead in your life and take action. Give yourself permission to explore and take small steps often – get support from others, don’t go at it alone.