“Mom, TI is not a word.”

“Yes it is.”

“Uh, no it isn’t!!”

“TI as in DO, RE, MI, FA, SO, LA, TI, DO from Sound of Music. The words of the notes of music. Each of those are considered acceptable words in Scrabble.”

I challenged her and lost.

TI was a word! There happen to be 107 acceptable 2-letter words in Scrabble of which I knew only the most common.

(In case you are interested here is a quick video on the basics of playing Scrabble and tips and tricks to being better at scrabble.)


Now, in my defense, I was only 10 when my mom and I had this conversation.

I am pretty certain that I was not going to legitimately beat my mom for some years but this changed things for me. I realized in that moment that there was a skill here that would help me be more successful in playing and winning at Scrabble. And I do like to win!

I needed to know the two-letter words.

And there are other tips and tricks that good Scrabble players know that I, as a 10-year-old, did not know yet.  For example, do not set your mom up for a triple word score and cross your fingers that she will leave it for you to use on your next turn. NEVER HAPPENS!

By spending some upfront time memorizing and learning the tips and tricks I have become a decent Scrabble player

Yet, I do not win every time.

I actually used to think that there would come a day when I would be unbeatable.

I know now that this is not how it works. Not in games, not in life and not in your job search.

There Is Almost Always An Element Of Luck

You have control over learning the game, memorizing the special words, being more strategic and playing better defense but that does not guarantee you will draw the best letters or see the most powerful spot to play a word for the most points.

You could actually be the best player and still lose. 

The same is true for your job search. You have control over a lot of things-your resume, your LinkedIn profile, your activity but you do not have control over the outcome.

You could actually be the best candidate for the job but never get an interview.


Stop Bringing Me Down Laurie!

I know. This could feel pretty depressing if you let it.

But what I want you to understand is that:

1) You do have control over a lot of parts to the job search game and this is where you need to focus.

2) You can let yourself off the hook on the results. Not that you don’t do what is needed to set yourself up for success but you do not have to beat yourself up if you don’t get the result you were seeking.

Huge sigh of relief and a feeling of uplift not being brought down.

Make A Game Out Of Doing The Activities That Are In Your Control

This means not worrying about why you were not contacted for the perfect job. This means not letting your negative emotions win. Blaming the fact that you did not achieve a desired outcome is a waste of time. Blaming job boards, applicant tracking systems, how you answered a question, a bad hair day or recruiters not returning your calls just keeps you from moving forward and taking action.

Have fun doing what you can and spend ZERO energy worrying about the results.

Try This

This week let’s focus on what we have control over and make a game of it.  Infuse your job search with fun!

DO NOT spend any time wondering, hoping or thinking about the result of your actions.
Just focus on your actions and celebrate them.

Here is a link to the Job Search Activities Game Board.

You get to collect points and give yourself rewards for achieving certain levels of points.