Money woes. A sense of rejection. Questions and pressure from family and friends. An uncertain future. If you’ve recently (or not so recently) lost your job, you know this dismal laundry list all too well.
Attitude counts for a lot more than you might think. It’s important to stay positive and follow these suggestions from The Five O’Clock Club:
1. Realize it’s OK to be “between jobs.”
Learn to ignore the inner voice that says, “I’ll never get a good job again.” Believe in yourself. Even if you’ve just been turned down for three jobs, remind yourself that you got three interviews and you can get three more.
2. Stay in touch with colleagues.
It’s important to stay in touch with your work friends. Having worked with you, they’ll be able to provide you with some positive reinforcement on your down days and remind you of your past achievements.
3. Treat your job search like a job.
The best way to overcome the shell shock of losing your daily routine is to create a new one. Providing yourself with the day-to-day structure you’re so familiar with will help you to keep your sanity and get going in your job search faster.
4. Stay healthy.
Regular physical exercise and a healthy diet help reduce tension and stress. If you go to the gym and can still afford it, keep going. Or if you’ve given up the membership, a half-hour walk every day will do the trick on a budget.
5. Enjoy the change of pace.
Being freed from the nine-to-five grind means you finally have time to slow down and take stock of what you really want to achieve in your life. Unemployment can be a time to plot course corrections.
6. Avoid negative news.
If you’re in the job market and are having trouble keeping up your own morale, stay away from the news, especially headlines about massive layoffs. Then, surround yourself by supportive, positive people.
7. Free free to vent.
If you’re angry, frustrated or feeling betrayed, find people to talk to about it. A support group where you can discuss your problems with people who are feeling the same pains you are is beneficial.
8. Approach unemployment like a business problem.
Set your objective: To find a satisfying job that pays the bills. Then develop your business strategy for achieving it. Track down the people who are in a position to hire you, offer proposals to meet their needs, and turn interviews into offers.
9. Celebrate short-term successes.
Set up achievable goals so you end each day with a sense of accomplishment. Write five more targeted letters. Identify 10 more companies to contact. Make eight follow-up phone calls.
10. Have fun.
You need to stay fresh, so take a break from your job hunt to have three hours of fun a week. Laughter is good therapy.