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Everybody knows this is not a fun time to go looking for a job. But the truth is, it may be a lot better than most people think. After more than a year and half of agonizing economic news in California, there are signs that people want a recovery. These people are not only job seekers, but employers and budget supervisors as well. Battered businesses that lost their footing when the economy began to slide in the spring of 2008 are feeling more comfortable and optimistic today. And, just as attitude is an important component in getting hired, it also plays an important tool to motivate someone to hire you.

When employers feel the time is right, they will add to their payrolls and investors will start new businesses. There is a sense of rejuvenation at the start of each year and the lingering recession has employers eager for change.

What’s the role of the job seeker in all this? To Adapt. To get a new attitude about your job search. To use the new year as a way to shake off the despair of 2010 job seekers.

Here are five things to consider as you start to look for work in the new year.

It’s time to broaden your horizons. Face it, when a lot of us lose our jobs we go right back out and look for that very same job again. Often, those jobs don’t exist anymore, or they have been reshaped. Do an evaluation of all your skills and start applying them to other jobs or other types of businesses. Since the bulk of the growth in our economy is going to be created with jobs that don’t yet exist, think creatively about how you fit into that.

Be prepared. Everybody understands how important the job interview is in the hiring process. Take the time to anticipate what questions will be asked of you. What could you have done to keep your last job? What have you learned since you have been unemployed? You don’t want to stumble and lose a good opportunity because you were caught flat-footed by an interview question. Study up.

Think about relocating. Not many people want to relocate for a job, but in this economy it might make sense. You need to take opportunities where you can find them in a troubled economy, and if that means moving 100 or 200 miles away for a couple of years to get back into the flow, it might be worth it.

Remain positive at all costs. Looking for a job is difficult. Doors are shut on you regularly, and your calls aren’t returned. It can get very discouraging. Just remember that the next potential employer you approach probably hasn’t done anything to make your situation worse, so set aside your hostility and show them you are eager to help them.

Have an eye to the future. Employers like to look ahead, but they really like when they find someone who has taken the time to ponder what the future is like. It’s exciting and intoxicating to them to find people who can’t wait to get to the future.

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