Thinking about your career, applying for jobs, and gaining work experience can be exciting and rewarding, but sometimes these activities can present challenges.
Stay positive when thinking about your future
Prioritise your wellbeing when exploring options – think about how you can use your skills and qualifications in a way that will enable you to feel happy, motivated, and authentic in the future.
Permit yourself to think short term – focus on what you’d like to achieve in the next year and be open to possibilities, rather than putting pressure on yourself to find a ‘perfect’ lifelong career.
- Avoid comparing yourself to others – it's easy to think that everyone else is ahead career-wise, but in reality, most people suffer knock backs and face challenges.
Be kind to yourself when seeking work
Structure your job hunt – Endless Googling is draining. Instead, define what you’re looking for and list criteria to guide your search. Identify relevant sources of vacancies and take a little and often approach to avoid overwhelm.
Switch self-criticism to self-compassion – perfectionism and negative self-talk can sometimes creep in when you’re making applications, so it’s important not to be too harsh on yourself. If you get stuck, seek fresh perspectives. Talking it through can help you to recognise your strengths and reset so you feel more positive.
- Do your prep – not knowing what to expect at interview can make you feel anxious. Read guidance carefully, reflect on what you have to offer, and practise your approach to build confidence.
Channel a calm, capable, and confident vibe while doing work experience
Cover the basics – sleep, exercise, and a nutritious diet are good for us, yet these things often slide when you’re busy or under pressure. Make a conscious effort to maintain healthy habits when you start a work placement.
Forget trying to be a perfect intern – no one expects you to have all the answers or get everything right, so embrace being able to ask questions and seek help if you need it.
- Engage your family and friends – think about who can support you if challenges occur while you’re on placement - who are your cheerleaders, who can offer wisdom, and who can provide comic relief?
Music is such a huge part of my daily life, so I knew that using it for productivity, to boost my mood or as a welcome break from work would be a simple, yet effective integration.