Hound Doggin’ It
In the old Elvis song, he strongly hints that a hound dog's value is catching rabbits. In other words, hunting successfully. A dog that is not successful at hunting will eventually starve without someone intervening to take care of it.
In my eyes, a hound dog has certain aspects that make it a valuable model:
- One place I lived, the dogs would go out early in the morning and hunt for a few hours. I was impressed with the fact that the dogs were always on duty. If you are going to be successful at something, you have to be dedicated to the pursuit of that thing, and you must be willing to give time and effort to the task, even at times when your competition (you do know that you have competition, right?) is relaxing at home.
- Have you ever seen a dog when it sees potential prey? When the dog decides that it is time to catch that rabbit, it goes all out. It may be different in the wild, where they would probably be chasing something larger than a single rabbit, but the dogs I've known were energetic
about their pursuit. How many people have you known that set out to accomplish something, but only pursue it when it drops into their laps?
- Have you ever seen a dog chasing two rabbits? Eventually, the targets split up, leaving the dog confused for a few steps. The rabbits use that momentary loss of momentum to get away. You have to be single-minded about what you are after. Now, in the context of job-hunting, which I am doing right now, that does not mean that you only pursue your dream job with company X. What if company X chooses not to hire you? Even if your knowledge/skills/abilities are a perfect match for what they need, they may not pick you. Be willing to work for company Y.
- That brings us to the point of being opportunistic. As a dog goes out on his hunt for the day, he runs across potential prey. If he waited until he clearly saw a chance to get rabbit X before he went out hunting, he would starve. As you go about doing what you do, new openings and opportunities will arise. Had you decided not to participate in life until the perfect opportunity arose, you would never have that chance. Therefore, do what you need to do, but keep your eyes open and be an opportunist.
- Most dogs will go out and hunt for a while, then if they have caught nothing, they will come home and eat from their dog food bowl. Likewise, put a reasonable amount of effort into your daily tasks related to whatever your objective is, but then get back to doing what you need to do where you already are. Don't lose what you have because you failed to take care of your daily responsibilities.
- Your dog does not hunt for rabbits in the swimming pool. He goes into the yard and the fields, where rabbits are likely to be. Sometimes, you have to go where your goal takes you or requires you to go. If you live in an area without many job opportunities in your field, look around and see if there are other areas that do have the opportunities or if there are other fields that you could try that are thriving in your area.
If you are looking for work, treat it like a job. Get up in the morning and start looking. Take a break at mid-day for lunch. Finish up with another hour or two in the afternoon. After that, go home and take care of your home, life, and family. You will not likely be hired the first day of your job search, so you have to take a long-term approach.
It could be worse than it already is. I'm glad I'm not in door-to-door sales, for example.
Job-hunting advice is available from Dr. Rob and others.
Your goals may be to obtain a new job, to advance in your current employment, or to be self-employed. These ideas may help you in ways that go far beyond what you imagined. Because at the end of the day, what you really want is a warm couch with a pleasant face to lick. 🙂