Updated: May 22
This past month, unemployment insurance claims in the United States soared past three million amid the COVID-19 crisis. This is a record-breaking number and it doesn’t include people who aren’t eligible for unemployment insurance such as freelancers. Not only is this happening in the U.S., but it has developed into a global pandemic of unemployment. A crisis like this not only takes a turn on your financial stability, but also on your psychological wellbeing. The question now is, how should you handle your emotional reaction towards losing your job?
Give Yourself Time To Adjust
Our jobs are not only what we do for a living, but they give us structure, purpose, and meaning. Losing a job is stressful as it is and adding a pandemic to the situation, heightens the stress significantly. But don’t beat yourself up for something that is not in your control. We have to face the fact that we can’t control what is happening at the moment and accept what we can control, which is our emotions. However, don’t try to shoulder your problems alone. Lean on the people that care the most about you and keep them in the loop on your employment status. Listen to what they have to say and accept any suggestions that they might give you regarding your new job search during COVID-19. Remember you’re not the only one going through this. Even HelpGuide offers a free Emotional Intelligence Toolkit that guides you towards better managing any negative emotions.
Express Your Feelings In A Creative Way
Unemployment and having to stay home due to COVID-19 involves a lot of change all at once. Going from being out all day and barely having time for ourselves to being confined to our homes by ourselves or with our family can cause a bit of shock. Writing down the feelings that you’re going through can help put things into perspective and look at everything a realistic way. Other ways of coping with your feelings are doing yoga, meditating, painting, or other relaxing activities. There have been plenty of articles about people who have been organizing their home as a way of keeping busy. Realizing that we have pretty much everything we need can ease the stress. You can even look to Google and search constructive things to do while in quarantine and get some ideas from other people. Moreover, turn to good use of the spare time you have now to spend time having fun with your family.
Look For A Silver Lining
Find the lesson you can learn from this experience. Perhaps this can help you reflect about what you’re doing in life. This is the exact moment where you get the chance to learn a little more about yourself, your likes, and dislikes. Who knows? Maybe you weren’t so satisfied with your previous job and this is your chance to learn a new skill or read about something you’re very interested in, and therefore, rethink your career opportunities. It may be difficult to concentrate in your home, but it’s essential that you get into the work mood during self-quarantine. Once you find something of value, and before you start your new job search, take a look at your resume. Just imagine all the people that are applying at the moment. Your resume MUST be a top resume. The safest path to take to meet your top resume goals is to seek an expert resume writer and let them take matters into their hands. Now is not the time to settle for the “okay” resume that you wrote two years ago. Let an expert resume writer help you update and edit it for you, or even write you a completely new one.
Network For New Employment
If you’ve already started your job search and have not had any luck, take some time to rethink your goals and set priorities. Developing new relationships or catching up on old ones is a crucial part of a job search during these difficult times. Not only will it help you cope with the stress, but it will open the door to new opportunities.
In fact, the majority of job openings don’t even advertise and are filled with networking. Believe it or not, even during quarantine, you can still build new friendships by joining online groups such as a book club or taking an online class where you can chat with your colleagues. There are even job clubs where you are surrounded with people who are dealing with a situation like yours and can act as motivation for you. Another worthwhile tip is to search for an expert resume writer to help you update your LinkedIn profile. As it happens, a study done a couple years ago found that 122 people received an interview through LinkedIn, with 35.5 million having been hired by a person they connected with on the site. So yes, LinkedIn is the best social platform out there for networking and developing business connections.
(Jobvite Recruiter Nation Report 2016)
Ultimately, your goal during this crisis (and any crisis) is to take control of what you can control. Rather than waste your energy worrying about matters that are out of your hands, swerve your attention to the contrary. Purposeful examples of these are updating to a top resume and cover letter, learning a new skill, researching about your career interest, or doing some remote networking. Find activities that give your life meaning while your job search is in process and your application materials are doing their job.