Avoid being a job search hack with these job search hacks.
1000lifehacks.com is a great website than I can easily spend a few hours clicking through, picking up useful tips for all kinds of things.
And I actually did.
The below list are over 150 life hacks that I bookmarked because they apply directly or indirectly to your job search, or things that might come up in your job search.
The list is divided in sections that you can jump to directly by clicking the section heading:
- General Job Search
- Networking & Events
Bookmark this list for future reference. Better yet, download a PDF version to keep handy offline or to print.
Free bonus: Download a PDF version of this article with the full, categorized list of job search hacks for easy reference.
General Job Search
1. Never ask someone how his or her job search is going. It's going terribly until they tell you they got a new job.
2. Want to find a good job after college? Make friends with as many people in your field that are on track to graduate one or two years ahead of you.
3. If you have to pay a company to work for them, it’s a scam. Period!
4. Never send your resume as a Word document (unless asked). Send it as a PDF file since it’s much cleaner and professional-looking.
5. If you want to know where you’ll be five years from now, look at who you’re hanging out with today.
6. Always be ten minutes early to everything. After a while, it will become a habit and you’ll never be late to anything again.
7. Trying to find an example of a word used in a sentence? Google the word and click “news”. You’ll get a bunch of headlines with that word in it.
8. Looking for something [such as typos]? Scan right to left with your eyes. You’ll pick up more since your brain isn’t used to reading that way.
9. [Use this for resumes & cover letters:] Writing an essay? Copy and paste it into Google Translate and have them read it out to you. It’ll be much easier to find errors this way.
10. When proofreading, read out loud to yourself. Your mouth will catch errors your mind might glance over. (Or you might end up leaving in funny resume mistakes)
Did you spellcheck and proofread your resume and cover letter? Try Grammarly free
11. The first thing people notice about you, subconsciously, are your shoes. Dress to impress.
12. Two things to never be cheap on are a mattress and shoes. If you’re not in one, you’re in another.
13. Use a banana peel to shine your shoes. It’s natural, no chemicals and no risk of staining the carpet!
14. Organize your clothes based on what activity you’re doing, not by type of clothing. One drawer for casual wear, one drawer for workout clothes, one drawer or section of the closet for going out clothes, and one for work clothes.
15. Life Tip: If you didn’t see anyone important yesterday, you can wear the same clothes today.
17. Get rid of little skin blemishes by putting a dab of honey over the area and covering it with a band-aid overnight. Honey kills bacteria, keeps skin sterile, and speeds up the healing process.
18. If you ever get gum stuck in your hair, rub some melted chocolate on the area, it will come right out. Mayonnaise also works.
19. Take a picture of yourself when your hair looks good. Show it to the barber next time you get a haircut. Perfect hair every time!
21. Wrinkly shirt? Throw it in the dryer with a few ice cubes for 5 minutes. Wrinkles gone!
22. In a rush to dry your clothes? Throw in a bath towel, they’ll dry much faster.
23. If a shirt/sweater has static cling, put a safety pin in it. The static will instantly go away.
24. How to un-shrink clothes:
- Soak clothing in warm water with 3 tbsp of conditioner for 5 minutes
- Lay flat on top of a towel and roll it up like a burrito
- Unroll after a few minutes and lay on a new dry towel
- Gently stretch to original size and let dry
25. Try applying your deodorant at night instead of the morning! It’ll be more effective and you’ll sweat less the next day.
26. 5 best places to spray perfume or cologne:
- Inside your wrist
- Behind your ear
- Base of your throat
- Inside your elbow
- Behind your knee
29. If you don’t get up every morning with a burning desire to do things you don’t have enough goals.
30. Confidence is not “They will like me”. Confidence is “I’ll be fine if they don’t”
31. Nervous about a speech, presentation or first date? Blow on your thumb. The Vagus nerve, which connects to your thumb, controls your heart rate, and by blowing on it your heart rate will return to normal.
32. Caught doing something embarrassing in public? Say you lost a bet.
33. Holding your drink at bellybutton levels at bars/parties will make you look more confident.
34. Scared to tackle an obstacle in life? Close your eyes and pretend you’re an 80 year old man who regrets not taking all the chances he could have in life. Then when you really feel like that old man, say to yourself “I wish I was young again”, and open your eyes… BOOM! You’re young again!
35. Nothing will ruin your 20’s more than thinking you should have your life together already.
36. Go 24 hours without complaining (not even once!) then watch how your life starts changing.
37. Life becomes more meaningful when you realize the simple fact that you’ll never get the same moment twice.
38. Want to avoid over-thinking? Focus on what to do next instead of worrying about what went wrong.
39. Don’t delay acting on a good idea. Chances are someone else has thought of it too. Success comes to the one who acts first.
40. Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.
41. The happier you are, the less sleep you require to function in everyday life. Sadness increases the urge to sleep more.
42. Take pride in everything you do, from flipping burgers to building rockets. It will always show in the quality of your work.
43. The greatest things never come from inside your comfort zone.
44. If “plan A” didn’t work out, the alphabet has 25 more letters. Stay Cool, Calm, & Carry On!
Networking & Events
46. In a social situation and don’t know anyone? Keep in mind that it’s better to be interested in other people than to try and be interesting.
47. When meeting someone for the first time, ask them what they LIKE to do, rather than what they do. It’ll get them excited & spark conversation!
48. Bonus: mention any of these tips as a conversation starter at events (find more conversation starters here)
49. Make up a 3-4 minute intro about yourself and memorize it. This will come in handy and make you seem more confident in a social setting when asked to “tell little bit about yourself”.
50. If you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room!
51. Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.
52. If you want someone to really listen to you, start the conversation off with “I shouldn’t be telling you this, but…”
53. Life Tip: If you have to yell, you already lost the argument.
54. A person usually makes a lot of hand gestures when telling a true story. When telling a lie a person’s hands will stay noticeably still.
55. When you start to wonder whether or not you can trust someone, that’s when you already know you can’t.
56. When someone wants to date you they will treat you nice. That doesn’t meant they are nice. Look how they treat others, that is how they will treat you eventually. (this is called the “Waiter rule”)
57. One of the best ways to judge a person’s character is to see how they treat animals.
58. Going to a bar? Start by giving the bartender a $20 tip. You’ll get amazing service the rest of the night.
59. How to figure out a 20% tip:
- Take the total ($35.54)
- Move decimal over 1 ($3.55)
- Double it ($7.10) = 20% tip
60. If someone does a good job for you and you are asked to do a survey, do it. Their compensation may depend on it.
61. Work Tip: When you’re at a work function, always make sure to stay one drink behind your boss.
62. If you lend someone $20 and you never see them again, it was worth the $20.
63. In a public bathroom the stall which is the closest to the door is usually the cleanest because it’s the least used.
64. If you want to buy the cheapest airline tickets online use your browser’s incognito mode.
65. Put dryer sheets in your luggage when you travel. You’ll get fresh smelling clothes no matter where you’re going.
66. Make sure to always take a quick photo of your luggage before traveling. This will help speed the paperwork process immensely if your luggage gets lost. Even better, take a photo of everything you plan to pack, and reuse it for the return trip.
67. When getting a coat check always take a picture of your tickets to prove its yours, just in case you lose it.
68. Change the lock screen on your phone to a picture of your name and contact info (email, Facebook, home number, etc.). That way if you lose it, the finder can easily see who’s phone it is and how to get the phone back to you.
69. If someone wants to see a photo on your phone, launch the camera app from your lock screen before handing it to them. They won’t be able to access any other apps, texts, etc.
70. When a stranger asks you to take a picture for them, take a few unannounced pics as they get ready to pose. Sometimes the candid pics come out best.
71. Photo Hack: Tilting your head to the right and slightly up makes you look more attractive. Tilting it to the right makes you look more intelligent.
72. Tired of searching for your car in those never ending parking lots? Take a picture as soon you park there. Try and include the floor and row number painted on a pillar or wall for an easy find.
73. How to ride the elevator to your floor without stopping: Hold the “close door” button till door closes. Keep holding. Press and hold desired floor number until the elevator starts to move. You’ll go straight to that floor.
74. Before dropping your business card in a bowl for those free lunch draws, make a distinct bend in it. You have a way bigger chance of being picked over all the other ones that lay flat.
75. Have a sore throat? Try eating a piece of cucumber. It cools down your throat and will instantly stop that inner itchy feeling.
76. Inhale through your mouth, swallow saliva twice, and slowly exhale through your nose for a 100% effective hiccup cure!
77. Ever wanted to stop a sneeze you feel coming? Press your tongue against the roof of your mouth, and it’s gone.
78. To clear a stuffy nose easily you can push your tongue against roof of mouth, then press finger between eyebrows. Repeat 20 seconds.
79. If you’re coughing uncontrollably, raise your hands above your head and it will stop!
80. Stomach rumbling awkwardly in a public setting? Do not clench your muscles, instead push out like you have a beer belly. The noise will stop instantly.
81. Especially in the workplace, always try to use the phrase “My understanding was…” instead of “I assumed…”. The latter is always viewed as having jumped to a conclusion without having actual evidence.
82. Add the 2-minute rule to your life. If it takes only 2 minutes to do, just do it!
83. Swallow The Frog Effect: Do the task you're least looking forward to first and the rest of your day will seem much easier and brighter.
84. You need motivation only till a habit is formed. After that, routine will take care of itself.
85. If you need to remember something in the morning, send yourself a text before you go to bed but don't open it.
86. Complete a simple task like making up your bed or preparing a real breakfast when you wake up in the morning. The feeling of even the smallest accomplishment has been proven to make you more productive during the day.
87. Sitting on a medicine ball instead of a chair while doing work can improve your focus and productivity by 50%.
88. When working with your boss or supervisor never ask “Can you do this for me?”, instead ask “Can you show me how to do this?”
89. The Pomodoro Technique: Work for 25 minutes, then a 5 minute break. After doing this 4 times, take a longer 30 minutes break. This is guaranteed to drastically boost your productivity.
90. Hate unpacking? Dump your entire suitcase onto your bed when you get home from a trip. Want to sleep? Better put them away.
91. Sleeping on your right side will help you fall asleep rather than sleeping on your left.
92. Having trouble sleeping? Blink fast for a minute. Tired eyes help you to fall asleep.
93. Daytime naps have been proven to improve your memory and reduce your risk of heart disease!
94. Mentally talking to yourself during tasks is actually a good way to keep yourself focused.
95. You're 50% more likely to remember something if you speak it out loud instead of simply reading it over and over.
96. Study your notes within one day of taking them. Retention rates are 60% higher then!
97. Need to remember an item in the morning? Put a picture of it as the background for your phone.
98. Writing something out is the memory equivalent of reading it seven times. A good tip to know when studying.
99. You are more likely to remember something you've written in blue ink than something you've written in black ink.
100. Taking notes on the computer? Use a weird font. Studies have shown the uniqueness will make you more likely to remember them!
101. Save your PowerPoint presentation as “Powerpoint Show” (.ppsx) and it will open directly to the slideshow.
102. Googling a computer problem? Add “solved” to the search query to find the answer much faster.
103. Hold down the control key and…
- C – Copy
- V – Paste
- B – Bold
- A – Select All
- L – Highlight URL
- P – Print
- T – New Tab
- W – Close Tab
- R – Refresh Page
- S – Save
- F – Find
- Z – Undo
104. You can easily zip a Word file by changing the name from .docx to .zip. When you unzip it you'll get everything in it separately, like images, gifs, links, etc, as single files.
105. If Word crashes or shuts down and your document didn't save, search “.asd” in the file Explorer under “This/My PC”. It should be there.
106. Especially if it's your work email, enable Gmail's ‘Undo Send' option, and set it to the maximum of 30 seconds. This can save you from sending a second email with an attachment or other information you forgot.
107. When you sign up for anything online, put the websites name as your middle name. That way when you receive spam/advert emails, you will know who sold your info.
108. Have a paper due? Need to not get distracted by the internet? KeepMeOut.com lets you block sites for certain periods of time, so you'll stay focused on the task at hand.
109. You can learn Spanish, French, Italian, German and Portuguese for free on Duolingo.com
110. If you lost an Android phone in your house and it's on vibrate, you can find it by using Google's Find My Phone service
111. Measure the length of your hand from the end of your palm to the top of your middle finger. Memorize it. Now you can judge the size of anything without a ruler.
112. It's actually better to take exams on an empty stomach because hunger makes you better able to focus.
113. Drinking moderate amounts of alcohol before writing can actually enhance your creativity.
114. There was a 2007 study that found drinking hot chocolate increases the blood flow to key areas of the brain, boosting alertness and increasing performance for two to three hours.
117. Too much stress literally causes the human brain to freeze and shut down temporarily.
118. Have a migraine? Put your hands in ice water a flex them several times… Headache gone!
119. Squeeze the fleshy place between your index finger and your thumb, known as the Hoku spot in Chinese medicine. Applying firm pressure there for just 30 seconds can reduce stress and tension in your upper body.
120. Top ten ways to de-stress:
- Play with a puppy
- Drink some hot tea
- Take a bath
- Go for a run
- Blare some music
- Make a list
- Catch up with a friend
- Read a book
- Turn off your phone
- Sleep it off
121. Life Tip: when nothing goes right, go to sleep.
122. A recent study found that listening to your favorite song before going to bed makes you fall asleep faster. It also found that it enhances your mood for the upcoming day.
123. Listening to music for at least 10 minutes a day strengthens your minds ability to handle stress.
124. Simply faking a smile stimulates the same neurons as a real one, which can trigger happiness and endorphins that will instantly make you feel good… TRY IT!
125. If you are in for a long drive at night, listen to comedians while driving. It's impossible to fall asleep while laughing.
126. People who laugh more are better able to tolerate pain. Both physical and emotional.
127. Fifteen straight minutes of laughter has the same health benefits as 30 mins of sit ups.
128. Laughing for 15 minutes has the same health benefits as getting two extra hours of sleep.
129. You only need two close friends in which you can trust and dedicate yourself to. Having too many friends can lead to depression and stress.
130. Be wary of who you keep around you. Personalities, traits, and words rub off naturally.
132. Surround yourself with people that reflect who you want to be and how you want to feel. Energies are contagious.
133. Surrounding yourself with positive people has actually been proven to increase your life expectancy!
134. Hang out with people who make you forget to look at your phone.
135. When you delete the unnecessary people from your life, good things will start happening for you and it won’t be a coincidence.
136. 5 simple rules to be happy:
- Free your heart from hatred.
- Free your mind from worries.
- Live simply.
- Give more.
- Expect less.
137. Grab a banana for breakfast! They are known as a happy fruit. Eating just one can help relieve irritable emotions, anger and or depression.
138. Feeling down? You can improve your mood almost instantly by eating these foods: oatmeal, cereal, salmon, milk, dark chocolate and bananas.
139. When depressed, do some cleaning. Straightening out the physical aspects of your life can also bring clarity to the mental ones.
140. Feeling blue? Draw a picture of your favorite comfort food! A 2013 study showed that people who drew pictures of pizza and cupcakes had up to a 28% increase in their moods.
141. Feeling depressed? Do something really nice for someone else. Trust me it helps!
142. Cold showers are good for you. They help relieve depression and help keep skin and hair healthy.
143. The two most effective treatments for battling depression are exercise and spending time with pets.
144. Just 20 minutes of exercise for three days a week will increase your happiness by around 10-20%.
145. Can't find time to exercise? Make it a habit to do 25 jumping jacks every time you come out of the bathroom. It won't take any real time from your day, but it will greatly improve your health. (here are 10 reasons to exercise daily on your job search, and here are 10 more)
146. Good News: You're not crazy! Hearing your name when no one is actually calling you is a sign of a healthy mind.
147. Being sarcastic on a regular basis can add up to 3 yrs to your life. Sarcasm is extremely healthy for the mind.
148. Sarcasm makes you mentally stronger. Which is very effective when dealing with emotional stress and frustration.
149. When you get an email or text that infuriates you, wait about an hour to respond. You'll be surprised at how much more rational you become.
150. When stressed by a situation(s), take a moment to think whether you will even remember this event in 5 years.
151. You can “rewire” your brain to be happy by simply recalling 3 things you're grateful for every day for 21 days.
You can find more hacks in the Job Search Hacks subreddit.
Free bonus: Download a PDF version of this article with the full, categorized list of job search hacks for easy reference.
What others are saying
- Ten Job Search Hacks Everybody Needs To Know
- How to Get Any Job You Want with these 7 Resume Hacks
- 5 Unconventional Job Search Hacks That Will Land You Your Dream Job
- How to Growth Hack your Job Search (with real examples & case study)
- 9 Steps To Hack Your Sales Job Search Process (And Land More Interviews)
- 5 Ways To Hack Your Job Search
Question of the article
What's your go-to job search life hack? Which tip above is the one you have to try? Share it with us in the comments.