It’s my experience that we, as Americans, are an impatient lot. We seek immediate satisfaction, gratification, and results. Moreover, we not only seek these things, we expect them. When our expectations are not met, we give up and walk away.
George Leonard in his wonderful book, entitled Mastery, writes with great eloquence about how certain types of individuals react to the challenges of mastering any skill. He focuses on the martial arts, but his analysis and insightful suggestions could apply to learning any skill. He counsels patience, discipline, and focusing on process.
The search for work is filled with stress and anxiety. We are impatient; we want results today, or if not today, then tomorrow. What we must realize is how little control we have over results. Will the HR specialist read our resume, will our friends seek leads on our behalf, will the interviwer recognize our skills and talents? All of these situations are not within our control.
What, then, is within our control? It’s our behavior, our action that we bring to bear upon our job search. When we focus on process rather than results, we are able to give our undivided attention to the task in hand, be it refining our resume, scheduling our networing appointments, or immersing ourselves in researching the job marketplace.
When impatience or anxiety arises, concentrate on what you can control — your process. If you are diligent about mastering your process, the results will, in time, take care of themselves.