Being unemployed can make anyone feel depressed. You can easily end up feeling worthless, scared, lonely, and rejected. You question yourself and your talents. You may have even thought you were indispensible. This is all normal—but not helpful. So what do you do to keep these perfectly natural emotions from paralyzing you?
Stick to a Routine
When you’re out of work, it can be very easy to just sleep in every single day, and avoid conducting a job search. Instead of punishing yourself this way, get up and get dressed every morning. Have breakfast. Do all the things that you used to do when you were working, and devote the work hours to your job search. If you lose sight of structure, you can quickly become unfocused and unmotivated, thereby making the problem even worse.
Find a Support Group
There are support groups available for workers at all levels, from executives down to office staff. When you understand that you’re not alone, your self-esteem can improve. You come to see that you were simply a victim of circumstance, just like the other people in your group. And of course, even though you’re associating with other unemployed people, you may still find networking opportunities.
Don’t sit on your butt and do nothing. You’re stressed because you’re unemployed, and exercise releases endorphins, which reduce stress. You’ll feel more energized, and perhaps even more motivated to work on your job search.
You never know where your next job is going to come from. So why not get out and volunteer? It doesn’t have to be a nonprofit—you could actually offer your time at businesses, volunteering your skills to help others grow and develop. You’ll build new connections, and you’ll also find that getting out and staying connected with people will go a long way toward alleviating the depression that comes with being out of work.
Losing your job has affected your mind. You’ve been psychologically damaged, and when this happens, you may be very tempted to go into avoidance mode, where you neglect your job search and your social contacts. So when you feel the least like getting out and doing something, that’s exactly when you have to force yourself. Keep in mind, too, that if you find yourself in severe distress, there is no shame in seeking professional help. In fact, a session or two with a qualified therapist may be just what you need to get back on your feet. Above all, never give up. Believe in yourself, and you’ll work again.
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About the author
Jessica Hernandez, President, CEO & Founder of Great Resumes Fast
Hi, I’m Jessica. I started this company back in 2008 after more than a decade directing hiring practices at Fortune 500 companies.
What started as a side hustle (before that was even a word!) helping friends of friends with their resumes has now grown into a company that serves hundreds of happy clients a year. But the personal touch? I’ve kept that.
You might have seen me featured as a resume expert in publications like Forbes, Fast Company, and Fortune. And in 2020, I was honored to be named as a LinkedIn Top Voice of the year!
I’m so glad you’re here, and I can’t wait to help you find your next perfect-fit position!
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