How To Get A Job In Only 100 Introspective Minutes

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We’re all looking for a leg up in the job hunt, and in our professional careers. Anything that can give us an advantage: an internship, a skill, an accreditation, a recommendation, or a commendation. We rummage for help on our resumes, on how to interview, on body language, on negotiating and on following up.

We don’t care so much about mindsets, feelings and all the hoighty-toighty, cumbaya internal stuff, because getting a job is simply about maximizing the external personification that is our bad-ass, capable, and employable selves.

And then sometimes we read something that flips everything on its head. Like this:

In an experiment with recently unemployed professionals, those assigned to write about the thoughts and emotions surrounding their job loss were reemployed more quickly than those who wrote about non-traumatic topics or who did not write at all.

What? English, Bassam. ENGLISH! Do you speak it?!

A group of recently laid-off professionals were tasked to write to themselves for 20 minutes a day for 5 days about their feelings surrounding the job loss. After 8 months, 68.4% of these people were employed compared to just 27.3% of people who hadn’t done this “hoighty-toighty, cumbaya stuff.”

As a science guy and someone who needs logic and facts to back up any claim, this floored me.

Chade Meng-Tan, Google’s Personal Growth Pioneer and self-titled “Jolly Good Fellow”, is also a numbers guy. He said in his book, Search Inside Yourself, “Usually, if an intervention can make a difference of a few percentage points, you can publish a paper. But here, we are not talking about 3 percentage points. We are talking about more than 40 percentage points!”

But wait, put those bits of gray matter back in your skull because our brains are going to be collectively blown one more time. From Search Inside Yourself,

Researchers asked 49 college students to take two minutes on two consecutive days and write about something they found to be emotionally significant. The participants registered immediate improvements in mood and performed better on standardized measures of physiological well-being. An extended inward look isn’t necessary, the study concludes; merely “broaching the topic on one day and briefly exploring it the next” is enough to put things in perspective.

Two. Minutes. A. Day.

Write more. Your bank account and the voice inside your head will thank you for it.

It’s science.