Buried in advice? Stop asking for so much.


I got a note this morning from a frustrated job seeker. She's bewildered because, of the 10 people she has asked for job search advice, she's received about seven varying (or directly opposing) answers.

"Your resume cannot be more than one page long." 

"Don't even think about having just one page for your resume."


"You need a cover letter."

"No one ever reads a cover letter."


"Call a recruiter. Recruiters will help you find a job."

"Don't bother. Headhunters are idiots."

And so on, and so forth.

This particular reader had had enough. For weeks and weeks, she's been scrambling and scrambling to uncover "the right" information, and the wildly disparate input she's collected has put her right at, if not over, the edge.

Unfortunately, this is common.


But here's the thing.

You can become overwhelmed or paralyzed by anything if you study and analyze it too much.

And when you get to this spot?

Pretty much everything just gets harder, not easier.

So my best advice to the reader in my inbox this morning, and to all of you, is this:

Stop asking for so much damned advice.

Stop reading so much.

Stop scrambling to collect and digest an absolute tidal wave of input and advice that, if you ask for it, will surely come from friends, family members, college professors, bosses, mentors, neighbors, blogs, career offices, the lady at the bank, your bowling partner.

Instead, pick a very short list of key people and resources that speak to your heart and feel right.

Talk to people you truly trust, and who don't have their own agendas for whatever decision you make.

Ask two people to review your resume, not 14.

Certainly, you can (and should) experiment as you navigate a career transition or job search, especially if you're finding a particular direction or tactic isn't working.

But there's a vast difference between trying out a new technique and asking 427 people what you ought to do next.

Be selective. Trust yourself.

You got this.