As if you didn’t have enough stress already, now you are on the hunt for a job. Millions of people now find themselves searching for work. Instead of that fact making you feel less alone, it just adds to your stress. How are you supposed to compete with millions of people? However, changing the way you look at your job search can help you better cope with the stress. Look at your job search as a valuable learning experience that can teach you skills for your career. View your job search as a way to learn new technology, or discover a career path. It’s easier to admit defeat and feel like things won’t change than stretch yourself outside your comfort zone to create a new life for yourself. Take that first step.
Continue to Do Interviews
You may have done countless online interviews, or you may have just had one or two. If you have social anxiety, having an online interview can be torturous. It may take you a day or two to recover from the experience. You may wonder if doing an interview is worth the emotional fallout later. Even if you feel like interviews are pointless and they haven’t gotten you anywhere, you have gained valuable practice. Continue to participate in interviews to hone those skills and keep them sharp. You never know when an interview will pay off with a job, so keep going.
Give Yourself a Day Off
You may have days where the thought of doing your job search yet again makes you want to just give up. We can all hit a wall of frustration sometimes. If you are facing a day that just seems harder than others to get your motivation going, give yourself a day off from the job hunt. Just make sure your day off doesn’t turn into another day off, and then a week off. It’s important to keep your momentum up. One day off won’t change your momentum too much, but more than that and you may be spending time trying to catch up on your job search. Designate a friend to contact you the following day to make use you are back on track.
Seek the Help of a Counselor
It is completely normal to experience anxiety and depression during a job hunt. You may have already been feeling overwhelmed with life even before you were let go. Meeting with a neutral third-party trained in mental health issues can help you get “unstuck” from how you are feeling. There are even mental health professionals with extra training in career counseling. You may find after working with a counselor that there is a career path that is better suited for your needs and goals.
Join a Support Group
Job hunting, especially during a time of crisis, can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. You may start feeling like you are the only person dealing with this. There are virtual support groups available where you not only talk about the frustration of searching for a job during the pandemic but also give each other leads and tips. There are also job hunt groups on social media, such as #jobhuntchat on Twitter.
Get the Word Out
Most jobs are found by job posting sites – they are found through recommendations and word-of-mouth. If you are concerned you may not have enough contacts to make that happen, you know more people than you realize. Let your social media contacts know you are looking for a job. Now is not the time to be shy – many people are job hunting. The more people you let know, the better chances you have to find something that works for you. Even if you know someone who works in an entirely different field than you, let them know you are looking. You never know who they might know.
Be Good to Yourself
It is of utmost importance right now to treat yourself with compassion and care. You have been through a lot, and you need time to just let yourself be. Schedule time in your day to do something that soothes you. That could be spending some time with a pet, practicing some deep breathing, or taking a walk – whatever helps you recharge. Be kind to yourself.