One thing is certain, during a crisis or just a stressful time, self-care is a must. Things in life don’t always go as we plan. No one likes it. How we cope when life gets turned upside down is very important. If you take the time to check in with yourself, you can maintain your strength, build your belief and cultivate a mindset for success even during trying times.
Yes, it’s stressful
We know job hunting is highly stressful. There’s a lot riding on the outcome: paying rent, making loan payments, buying groceries, and taking care of your family obligations. When you combine a stressful time with a crisis like COVID-19, you can begin to feel overwhelmed quickly.
It’s common for people to spend all their effort focusing on the negative situation they and forget about their own wellbeing. Finding a way to deal productively with the pressure is vital.
Start by answering these simple questions.
* What are current sources of positive feelings in your life?
* What are the sources of negative emotions in your life?
* What activities do you find stressful or depleting?
* What would you like to stop doing or replace?
* What activities add joy to your day?
* How do you remind yourself to take appropriate self-care actions?
* What success habits do you practice daily?
* Who will help hold you accountable?
* Do you use a journal to keep track of your choices and feelings?
While self-care looks different for everyone, once you’ve identified your stressors, you can begin to find ways of working around those and add in more joyful activities to counter them.
Picture the future
If the current medical crisis has resulted in a temporary or permanent layoff, there’s things you can do to help make the transition from employed to searching easier to manager. First, I’d urge you to use my FREE CAREER ASSESSMENT to get a picture of what you’d like your future career to be. Then the next best step is creating a daily schedule.
Set a schedule
It’s easy to get depressed and out of the routine when you don’t have to punch a clock every day. It’s important you set an alarm, get out of bed and get dressed every day. Block off a couple of hours to search for potential job openings and do research on the companies. Then spend time checking in with your network, either digital or personal, and let them know you’re looking for work. Try to plan some physical activity each day as well. It gives you an endorphin boost and can be a great outlet for your frustration.
Spend time each day visualizing the outcome you want. In the Career Assessment worksheet, you defined the type of company you wanted to be part of and what your ideal days looked like – focus on those. Having that clear vision will keep you motivated and focused during the process.
Don’t give in to fear
Remember to keep a handle on your doubts and insecurities. It’s not your fault this happened. Don’t let the situation turn into a pity party of negative talk that causes you to doubt your worth. Don’t be to hard on yourself. Your job search may take a little longer than normal since so many companies are dealing with changes to their workforce and loss of production due to COVID-19.
Slow your scroll
Be careful what you consume. With more time on your hands, you may find yourself idly scrolling through page after page of posts on social media or listening to hours of talking heads on TV talking about how the world is falling apart. Stop. You may want to take a step back. Yes, it’s important to stay up to date and knowledgeable, but you are 100% responsible for what you consume. Don’t fill your head with fear or negativity. Exercise caution about what you allow into your mind.
Update your personal career marketing material
Make sure you have your personal marketing material up to date and designed to beat the software scanning online applications. You can use this time to beef up your personal brand, optimize your LinkedIn profile and be a step ahead of crowd once the situation returns to normal.
Taking care of you during a job search is crucial. Having a positive mindset will help kick your search into high gear. Whether you’re self-isolating, temporarily laid off, or telecommuting from home, you can use this time to prepare for an upcoming career change whether you were already considering one or if COVID-19 crisis has made the decision for you.