Losing your job can be devastating. Here are 10 ideas to survive while you search.
One day a week I volunteer at the employment center at my church. Its not the kind of place that you go to get a job – no placements – but a place for encouragement and strengthening your skills. A place to learn better ways to cope with job loss. I think of them as survival skills for a time you may be feeling devastated – physically, spiritually and emotionally.
10 Ideas for coping with Job Loss
Start the morning well. Get up early and keep a daily schedule. Have breakfast with the family and create a “to do” list for the day. Include contacts to meet, areas to research and time to dream about your future.
Exercise. Take this time to get in better shape and blow off some steam. Exercise is a natural depression fighter so plan on at least 20 minutes a day, 5 days a week. Walk, basketball or yoga, it doesn’t really matter, mix it up even. It will help your attitude.
Get out of the house. Just get out there! “Tempting as it may be, do not sit at home in your pajamas searching the internet for jobs until noon. According to most experts, only about 7% of jobs are found through the internet.” see Coping with Job Loss.
Keep your sense of humor. Smile. Laugh. Protect yourself from doom and gloom. According to the Mayo Clinic laughter has both short and long term benefits to soothe tension and stimulate your immune system. Plus who wants to hire a grumpy employee?
Lend a hand when you can. My friend Trish found herself homeless and living in her car. While she was coming into the employment center to work on her resume and apply for jobs she also started volunteering at the local homeless shelter. Studies suggest that giving back makes us feel happier and be healthier. It certainly helps us see beyond our own troubles. This has also turned into a new paid gig for Trish!
Keep a journal. Sometimes things are just too painful to say out loud. A journal will help you diffuse your emotions and change the way you think about your situation. Some day you will be able to look back at this time and be grateful for the lessons you’ve learned. Keeping a compliments journal – a record of the nice things people say about you – can be a big boost to your morale.
Don’t keep it inside – communicate. Journaling is not enough though, talking is critical. You need to talk to your friends and family about how you feel and share your successes and failures. You need their support and encouragement to get through. Talking breaks the feelings of isolation that can come with job loss.
Renew your relationships. Now is the time to really get serious about your LinkedIn page! But it’s more than that – renew the relationships that have suffered because you were working so hard before. These people will be a source of strength for you. Plus you are 8 times more likely to find a job from a friend or acquaintance than you are from a stranger online.
Find a job coach. We all need someone to give us a nudge when we get sidetracked. A job coach can give you encouragement and be someone you are accountable to. A friend or business associate could make a good mentor.
Develop a plan. Each day develop a search plan and go after it. While it may be tempting to stay home cleaning instead to making your job search a priority, most serious seekers treat their daily job search like a temporary job. They put at least 8 hours into it.
More coping with job loss ideas from around the web
Here are eight more rules in an article from Forbes.com. The article index section and ldsjobs.org is not just for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Here you will find articles about searching for employment, furthering your education and building your own business, plus sign up for free, create a profile and search available positions in your area.
Find your state job bank at Career One Stop, which has data on available jobs in all 50 states and get occupational information about any profession.
Coping with job loss can be hard and is certainly not something we would choose to do. Use this stressful time to remain upbeat, take care, and reinvent yourself. You will survive!