January 10, 2020

Looking for work? 8 ways to get luckier

5-minute read

Looking for work, a new opportunity or an interesting contract? Good luck with that. We say that because our expert recruiters at TalentWorld know you have the power to increase your luck to find employment you’ll love.

Research shows some people have more luck looking for work than others. But it’s not by chance. Luck happens when you act lucky, says Richard Wiseman, author of the bestseller The Luck Factor.

4 things people do to make fortune smile on them

1.  They notice chance opportunities (unlucky people don’t).

2.  They trust their intuition when making decisions.

3.  They head into situations with positive expectations.

4.  When something bad happens, they figure things could have been worse.

Lucky people are more relaxed and that includes those seeking jobs in Canada.

A small percentage of things are out of our control, like winning the lottery. But if you’re looking for work, you have a lot more influence in shaping your destiny than any four-leaf clover can deliver.

Good things can happen when looking for work, you feel lucky 

Lucky people feel more confident, and so bring a greater sense of openness and calmness when pursuing goals, according to Prof. Wiseman. That calmness is a game-changer. When you’re anxious about an outcome, it’s harder to spot unexpected or chance opportunities, even when they’re under your nose.

Here’s a perfect example: In one study, people who declared themselves lucky or unlucky were asked to count pictures in a newspaper.

The unlucky people took about two minutes to finish the task.

The lucky people finished in seconds!

Why the difference? Self-declared lucky people were found to be less fearful and more relaxed about the task. As a result, the lucky all noticed a large headline on page 2 that read, “Stop counting, there are 43 photographs in this paper.” Those who felt unlucky were so tense and worried about failure that they focused exclusively on pictures, and never even noticed that headline.

Here’s another example: Those who feel lucky and are looking for full-time positions stay open to considering contract or temporary placements too. They believe there’s always a chance that good things will happen for them in these situations.

Sure enough, TalentWorld recruiters have placed many thousands of “lucky” people in unexpected opportunities where they benefitted hugely from getting a foot in the door and making new contacts.

Looking for work? 8 surprising ways to improve your luck

1. Go into any job interview knowing you’ll survive, whatever the outcome  

Telling yourself you absolutely must get this job increases your anxiety, desperation, and stress. And when your inner voice is screaming at you, “Don’t blow this,” it’s hard to pick up on small cues that could lead to better conversations with recruiters and hiring managers.

2. When you talk to people who can help your career, focus on connecting not convincing

Simply aim to have a good conversation about how you believe you can be able to help.

3. Need a lucky break? Shake it up, have more fun

Professor Wiseman notes, “Unlucky people are stuck in routines.”

Take this case: A self-described unlucky person complained that networking events were a waste of time and money; he only ever met other job-hunters. But he admitted he only approached people who looked as panicked and lost as he felt.

He was given a new challenge: Introduce himself to anyone wearing a certain colour of clothing. As a result, he had a far more profitable experience.

4. Listen to your hunches

If your gut says go for it, but your head says, “No way, you’re just not lucky enough,” here’s what you do.  Acknowledge your doubt, but don’t let it win the battle. Experts suggest telling yourself, and others, “Yep, it may be unlikely, but I’m going to try anyway.”

5. People — and luck — smile on optimists

Notice how lucky people always have stories about how others who they barely knew helped them out? Experts say that’s not by dumb luck. The reason they benefited from support is that people were inspired by their initiative, drive and enthusiasm.

For those seeking career opportunities especially, optimism sells much better than negativity.

6. Tell yourself that good things will happen…eventually anyway

Playwright Tennessee Williams famously said, “Luck is luck is believing you’re lucky.” Lucky people persist not because they have a crystal ball that gives them any guarantees, but because they decide to believe that if they persist something positive will happen, if not today than tomorrow.

As the lucky say, “Everything works out in the end, and if it hasn’t worked out yet, then it’s not the end.“

7. Remember, “it could always be worse”

Didn’t get the job? A better one is around the corner. Had a tough interview? You’re lucky it wasn’t 20 times more embarrassing. This kind of thinking matters insists Professor Wiseman. It positively affects your energy and your willingness to try again to find work opportunities that are right for you.

8. Tell yourself “I’m lucky” and back it up with proof every day

Professor Wiseman asked people who never felt lucky to write down even the smallest, positive thing that happened to them, daily for a month. They were instructed to not include anything unlucky or negative on their list. By the end of a month, people changed their minds about themselves. They called themselves “lucky.” And that gave them confidence to seek more career opportunities,  among other things.

You can be sure that we always look for chance opportunities –and find them.  Take a look at TalentWorld job postings and make your luck happen.

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