Unemployment is incredibly difficult. In fact, losing a job ranks as one of the top ten most stressful life-altering events. So, if you’re out of work and feeling devasted, you are NOT alone. Follow these tips to cope with the uncertainty of unemployment.
Evaluate Your Finances
When you’re out of work, your top priority is to continue to care for yourself and your family. If you’re eligible for benefits, applying for unemployment should be your first step. Unfortunately, filing can seem overwhelming. If you don’t know where to start, CareerOneStop will guide you through the process. Next, calculate what bills you must pay each month. If your expenses are higher than your current income, figure out how to make ends meet. You may decide to cut back on spending, explore other assistance programs, pull from a savings account, or take out a loan. Also, many organizations will postpone your payments if you are unemployed due to a crisis like COVID-19. However, you’ll probably need to call and ask.
Accept Your Feelings
According to psychotherapist David Peter, “… losing a job is a real loss and often results in real grieving, as if someone you know and loved has died.” Therefore, being angry or depressed doesn’t mean you’re a bad person. It means your human, and you’ll need time to work through the stages of grief.
You may be tempted to spend weeks, months, or even years dwelling on your bad luck. You were mistreated. Your ex-boss was horrible. Although venting is fun, it doesn’t solve ANY problems. Breakaway from your negative thoughts by turning your attention to something positive. Volunteer, take an online class, tackle a home improvement project, or play a board game with your kids. By staying busy, you simply won’t have time for those unhelpful woe-is-me thoughts.
Create a Daily Schedule
So, you’re unemployed… but sleeping in until noon and binge-watching TV twelve hours a day is NOT in your best interest. Keep yourself in job shape by sticking to a daily schedule. For example, you could wake up at 7 a.m., work out from 7:30 to 8 a.m., job search from 9 to 11 a.m., take an online class from 11 a.m. to noon, volunteer from 1 to 3, run errands from 3 to 4, make a home-cooked dinner from 4 to 5 and then enjoy a well-deserved relaxing evening.
Ask for Help
Your first instinct when you’re unemployed may be to withdraw from your family and friends. After all, you don’t want them to think they need to take care of you. Well, guess what? Your friends and family WANT to help you. They can provide support, encouragement, and (that’s right) job referrals. In addition, consider contacting a staffing agency. A professional recruiter can offer advice and insights, so your employment search goes more smoothly.
Do You Need Extra Help Coping with the Uncertainty of Unemployment?
At FirstStaff, our recruiters know companies that are hiring. We place light industrial workers and office professionals throughout Arkansas and western Texas. Check out our available openings and find your next job today!