Rage applying: How to conquer the urge of leaving your job without preparation
You’ve had an awful day at work. You felt that your efforts were belittled or ignored. Perhaps a comment from your boss dampened your mood and morale.
Now, you’re feeling a mix of anger and disappointment. Although you still have many tasks pending, you decide that it's over. Right then and there, you start looking for another job.
With a hot head and without much criteria or planning, you start bombarding recruiters with your CV – left and right. You apply for vacancies you are qualified for and those you aren’t. But it doesn't matter now as long as you get that fresh start.
This is called rage applying. In other words: frantically looking for other work as a form of revenge against those who, in your opinion, do not value you.
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It’s not a new practice, but it’s a trend being talked about more and more lately for several reasons: after the pandemic, many workers – especially the younger ones – have been rethinking their working conditions.
In the context of remote or hybrid work, opportunities opened up for people to choose from a wider range of options of where and how to work. Younger people, for example, are looking for more satisfying – albeit shorter – work experiences.
When they feel a job no longer “sparks joy” for them, they leave.
On the other hand, job uncertainty, massive layoffs, and high rates of resignation can send people on edge. That’s why many are always looking for vacancies elsewhere.
What exactly is rage applying about?
What is the purpose of haphazardly applying to numerous job positions? Typically, this approach is reactive and impulsive, lacking in thoughtful consideration. While it may increase the chances of receiving interview invitations, it can also lead to unnecessary rejections due to the lack of a serious or strategic plan.
But why subject yourself to receiving rejection emails from companies you don't even recall applying to or care about? This can only fuel further frustration in your current employment.
Instead, seek advice from professionals. Realistically, applications made in this manner have a low likelihood of success. Why? If an interview is granted, candidates may appear insecure and hesitant. After all, those who apply without clear objectives are unlikely to stand out among the hundreds of other applicants.
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Submitting a generic CV to multiple employers, rather than tailoring it to each position, does not help set oneself apart in a pool of hundreds of applicants.
However, not all is negative. Applying to several companies can give you a sense of the job market and help you have a backup plan if needed. And, if lucky, it can serve as a backup plan in case of a future decision to leave or in case of termination from your current employment.
Still, a more targeted and well-prepared approach to job searching is likely to yield better results.
Always keep a cool head!
In a tricky and desperate situation, humans tend to imagine the worst. That’s why it’s important to talk to your boss, in case you have any issues at work or think you are at risk of dismissal. If this is indeed the case, you can start looking for options, but in an organised and more effective manner. Not out of anxiety or anger.
If you are going to apply for a job (or several jobs even), take time to evaluate your options. Don't jump out of the frying pan and into the fire. Ask yourself first if a job move at this point would be good for your career, finances, time and well-being.
Should you decide to keep your options open, do it right. Update and personalise your CV. Whenever required, write correct and clear cover letters that distinguish you from other candidates. Set measurable goals: how many CVs will you send daily or how many interviews do you expect to get in a month?
Lastly, don't let your job hunting efforts interfere with your current work, no matter how much anger or frustration you feel.