Monday, July 11, 2005

Breaking out of the rut

It’s official: not working has stopped being fun and started being a drag. I need more structure to my day, I need more challenges, I need to meet new people… and some income would be nice too. It’s time to stop procrastinating and start the job search process.

But how to break out of this comfortable, idle, but ultimately unsatisfying rut and knuckle down to it? Get active, get structured; get professional; get positive:

  • Set a regular time to get up, and stick to it.
  • Schedule at least an hour of job-search activity per day.
  • Avoid distractions, displacement activities, and rewards until the work is done.
  • Get some exercise every day, if only just a walk around town.
  • Get a hair cut; stop letting the beard stubble grow.
  • Stop fearing the process; start embracing it.
It’s not lost on me that one man’s rut is another man’s mild depression; in fact, I’m not sure there’s much of a difference.

I’m rusty on the job-search process: my last job was one I loved, with great projects and a fantastic bunch of co-workers, and I stuck with it through ten years, five promotions, five buyouts, and three employers. I haven’t been on the market for a long time. The first step: assemble the résumé.

(And it’s always “résumé” in the US: say “CV” and you’ll get a blank look. American English has an odd affection for French pronunciation, even on Old French words that passed through Middle English: see also ’erb, ’omage, fill-ay.)