Job loss is extremely difficult. Depending on your scenario, the loss can be the most emotional, demeaning, and confusing period of your life. I have been making my way through the job market myself and the experience has been rough!
When you are at home all day, with no place to be, it is very easy to slip into this state of depression. When you are depressed, you let yourself sleep in and veg on the couch for hours, binge watching Desperate Housewives (in my case), and eating junk to fill the void. Not only are you accomplishing NOTHING in regards to finding a job, but you are allowing yourself to get lost in your thoughts (which doesn’t help in your confidence).
Your mind becomes consumed with thoughts of, “No one wants to hire me” or “I am incapable of doing things right”, etc. Those of you that are experiencing or have experienced job loss, you know what I am referring to.
Even though this is a very difficult time, don’t let it get worse by not taking care of yourself or working towards the next steps in your life. Take this opportunity to grow, learn, and to take care of yourself.
This season of my life has harbored (and is still harboring) the most growth I believe I have ever experienced in myself. My growth was the result of being tired of feeling depressed and acting towards making myself feel better about myself and worthy of those jobs that I was applying for.
Here are 5 steps I have learned to help you rise above the negative and to prevent yourself from becoming a victim of job loss and becoming a conqueror.
Treat every day like a work day
Give yourself a reason to get up and out of bed. It is crucial to not only look for and find jobs, but it also is a time to increase your skills, get things done to better your living environment, and to maintain that worker’s mindset. We were made to work. When we feel unaccomplished, we begin to feel purposeless.
Action: In short, make every day a work day:
- Plan your day the night before. Lay out realistic daily goals and tasks.
- Wake up early.
- Create a checklist—use Notes on your iPhone or download a checklist app.
- Get dressed and lay out realistic daily goals and task.
Refresh and Learn New Skills
You have a lot of free time now. Use this opportunity to expand on your resume. Not only can you find free online classes through LinkedIn or other organizations, but you can also visit your library and checkout books that could help advance you in your career.
I recently learned that my state unemployment department offers free classes, some of which you can become certified in. They also offer very beneficial resources to help find jobs that best fit your interests and skill set.
Action: Check with your local and/or state unemployment department. You might be surprised at what sort of resources and opportunities they offer (I was).
Take Personal Days
It is easy to neglect yourself when you are feeling depressed I personally will have a hard time doing anything “for me” if I feel like there are more important things to do (like finding a job). But, the important part about finding a job is feeling confident and overall good about yourself. If you neglect yourself, it may very well reflect when looking for jobs or attending a job interview.
Action: Take at least 2 days a month for yourself. Take on your hobbies, take care of your personal hygiene and beauty regiment (hair care, nails, body, etc), just relax, etc. Whatever it takes to make you feel the best about yourself.
Take Care of Your Physical Health
Again, it is very easy to neglect ourselves when we are depressed. Working out is the last thing we will want to do, especially when it is easier to eat our feelings away. In the end, you will end up regretting devouring that whole roll of cookie dough and not working out afterwards. Your overall health is very important in providing you with energy, which you will need if you are to feel awake and motivated to look for your new job.
Action: Continue to work-out (or if you don’t work out just go for walks and move). It will keep you feeling healthy and will release those endorphins which will better your mood and motivation. Eating healthy and staying active will reflect in your overall demeanor and mood.
Take Care of Your Mental Health
This is very important. Your emotional well-being is the first to take a hit when you lose a job. You will beat yourself up for the reasons you lost your job and/or the reasons why you aren’t finding a new one. When you are home all day long, day in and day out, you get lost in these thoughts. They can bring you down lower and lower the more you dwell on them.
Action: Get out, meet with friends and family, speak with a therapist or counselor about what you are going through, etc. If you are religious, lean on your faith. In my experience, my time spent with God brings a comfort and peace that no other worldly thing can bring.
Don’t get me wrong; you will still have those bad days. But, I hope that these tools will help (as they have helped me) to dig myself out of the slum and into a state of possibilities.
Have you dealt with a job loss/ What sort of problems did you face and how did you deal with them? Let me know in the comments! Feel free to ask me questions about my experience!
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