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HOW TO LAND YOUR DREAM JOB

THE 7 SECRETS TO LANDING YOUR DREAM JOB
By Sarah Barber

I remember being a young child and telling grown-ups that I was going to be a teacher when I grew up. I was going to be the best teacher in the world! Yet, somewhere along my path, I discovered that being in front of a large group of people – speaking, mentoring, or teaching – terrified me beyond belief. I’d shake, mumble, clear my throat one hundred times, and my hands would sweat. Gross, I know! So, I spared you all the sweaty and mumbly mess I would become and went into other fields. You’re welcome. 

I’ve had a job since I was the ripe young age of fourteen, and I have found great satisfaction in being of service to others. Most of my jobs have been some form of customer service – banking, dental, and property management. Heck, I even started my own cleaning business, because why not? Extra cash is always nice. But there was this one itch that I couldn’t scratch: I wanted to be a writer. Like a paid writer. But not just any kind of writer; I wanted to be a copywriter.

I just recently landed my dream job, so I am going to share with you the 7 Secrets to Landing Your Dream Job.
1. DISCOVER YOUR DRIVE

Oftentimes overlooked, this is actually the most important step. How do you know what you want to do? Where does your passion lie? What would get you up in the morning at the crack of dawn, albeit tired, with a smile on your face and ready to take on the day? There are career centers out there that can help you if you are unsure of where to start.  

2. GET A TEAM OF MORALE BOOSTERS BEHIND YA

Whatever your dream job may be, or however stubborn you may be (like myself), you need to have a core of awesome morale boosters behind you. Someone to call when you weren’t chosen for the position you applied for because they “went with another candidate”. Without support and encouragement, your thought train will go crazy and that’s of no good to anyone.

Alexander Graham Bell once said, “When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.” Clearly, this guy was a genius. So when you get that phone call from your prospective employer that makes you want to cry – cry. But then get over it, because there is a better job (and better employer) waiting for you.

 

3. GET A MENTOR

Sometimes, this can be hard to find. But trust me, when you find someone that believes in you and all of your potential, you are going to thank your lucky stars. My mentor is an entrepreneur. He started his own business from the ground up and I am pretty sure he is a millionaire these days. One day, he called me and asked if we could meet for lunch, saying he wanted to share with me some important information. During our luncheon, he looked at me and said, “Sarah, I see you. I see what you are and I know your potential. Stop taking jobs that do you no good, that aren’t going to get you to where you want to be. Stop chasing money – money never bought anyone happiness. What is it that will make you happy?” I told him that I wanted to be a writer. He shared with me a secret: Writers write every day. Doesn’t matter what – they just write. So… I started writing. Every day.

 

4. NETWORK

If you’re like me, you like to be resourceful. Sometimes, a random conversation with your friend or neighbor turns into an I-know-someone-who-is-looking-for-a-graphic-designer-and-you-should-share-your-portfolio conversation. My mentor called me a few months after our luncheon. He wanted to let me know that he had a colleague who was looking for a freelance writer and was interested in my words, and wanted to help me build my portfolio. You never know who knows whom. So network, network, network away!

5. DON’T LET A LACK OF EXPERIENCE OR EDUCATION BE YOUR DEBBIE DOWNER

I really don’t like pity parties, although they are more fun with people, but seriously – don’t let a lack of experience or education dissuade you from applying. The worst thing anyone can say is ‘no’, but you don’t know until you ask. If you lack proper education, maybe consider getting your Associate’s Degree, or a degree in the field you wish to pursue. If you lack proper experience, try doing freelance work or apply for an internship. Sometimes that may mean you’re stuck at a means-to-an-end job that you may not fully enjoy while you’re doing that unpaid internship – just keep in mind that this, too, shall pass. That internship could turn into a full-time job offer. Believe in yourself that you are worth it and apply for your dream job until you get it.

6. READ “THE ALCHEMIST”
One of my favorite authors is Paulo Coelho – I swear his books always find me when I need them the most. Last summer, when I was having a particular rough time with the job rejections, my mentor gave me a copy of “The Alchemist”. He said, “Read this. It’ll change your life.” I really hate to admit when my mentor is right, but he was. It changed my whole outlook – on everything. The best sentence that I read in that whole book was, “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” So, don’t let the fear of failure interrupt your belief that you can.

7. GET IT DONE
Easier said than done, right? You’re probably like, “You are driving me nuts right now. Ostensibly, I would have my dream job if it were that easy.” It starts with your attitude toward yourself – treat yourself well, believe that you are worth it, and good things will come your way. Apply for jobs in the field you want to be in, and don’t disparage if you don’t get it (see: Alexander Graham Bell’s most excellent saying in Secret #2). But when you get that call for an interview – or better yet, the job offer – you’ll know you did something rig