If you're not in your dream relationship right now, Valentine's Day probably finds you reflecting on the state of your dating life. You'll look back on what worked and didn't work in the past and figure out how to end up in a great relationship in the future.

Those lessons you've learned from years of dating don't just inform how you should move forward in your romantic life, however. They can actually be surprisingly valuable when it comes to your career.

Here are five surprising dating lessons that also apply to getting hired.

1. Stay optimistic.

Rejection can sting, but in reality it's just a clear message that the job or person is not the right fit for you. Be grateful for that message because sometimes we want something so badly that we can't see it for what it is. Rejection helps you know, without a doubt, to keep on looking. Channel that optimism in your dating life and throughout the hiring process, and it'll make it much easier to cope with rejection.

2. Be confident.

Just like you have to be comfortable with the prospect of rejection, it's equally important to be comfortable being yourself. Dating and job hunting will eat you alive if you're not confident in who you are, what your value is, and what you want. Knowing what you're about and what you can offer makes it easier to find opportunities that might work for you.

Being confident will also help you walk away if a job isn't a great fit. And when it comes to dating and getting hired, that's just as important as knowing when "the right one" is in front of you.

3. Prepare to talk about what is important to you.

On a date and in an interview, you have to be able to hold easy conversations about topics that are important and interesting to you. Doing this communicates your personality, who you are, and what interests you.

Be passionate, excited, and eager to initiate questions or start discussions about topics that clearly tell someone else who you are. It's one of the best ways to sell yourself.

4. Let go of the end goal and focus on enjoying the process.

Far too often we look at both dating and getting a new job as a goal. As soon as you find a partner or a job, you think you've won. This goal-orientated way of thinking is shortsighted, however. Sometimes it can push you to close the deal or force a situation that shouldn't be forced.

Instead, focus on the process. You know that finding the right partner and the right job is your goal, but that doesn't mean you can't slow down and enjoy the process along the way. Plus, when has anyone been attracted to pushiness? Never. Have fun, look at it as a journey, and learn along the way. Before you know it, you'll have partners and job offers coming your way.

5. Never give up.

Even if you can handle rejection well, your spirit will probably start to wane after 50 bad dates or 20 unsuccessful interviews. Guess what? If you give up you'll never find the relationship or job you want.

You HAVE to keep going. Brush up on the stories of the most successful people in your industry. I bet all of them have gone through times of endless rejection and disappointments. Did they give up? Of course not. You shouldn't either. The moment that happens, your fate is sealed.

Learn from these five lessons and see if you have better luck when it comes to playing the hiring field.

Published on: Feb 13, 2017