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Picking Yourself After Unemployment Grief

It can be very stressful to lose your job. You feel like hope is lost and you will never find another job again. Even though the stress of unemployment can seem overwhelming, it is important to keep your head up high and never give up trying to better your life in order to take care of your mental health.

The Stress of Job Loss

Losing your job means that you lost how to make a living and support yourself and your family. Jobs give us structure and meaning in our lives where we use our positions at work to define ourselves and gives us something to do every day. Losing a job can mean you have lost your professional identity, self-esteem, daily routine, and sense of security. This can cause you to put yourself in a deep depression where you do not even bother applying to other jobs in fear that you will suffer rejection or lose that particular job as well. The reality is that you need to support yourself and staying in a depressive state will not help you in your grief. Making daily efforts to get hired will prove to yourself you are strong.

Change Your Negative Thoughts

Instead of thinking of losing your job as the end of the world, just see it as a temporary setback. The greatest people in the history books have had obstacles and setbacks to overcome, but they did not rise back up by giving up. All you can do is learn from experience and try again. Think about something new that you are looking for that you wish you had at your previous employment. You can also express your feelings differently. That means instead of wasting yourself away with drugs and alcohol, write your thoughts down in a journal to look at your situation in a realistic light and write a plan down on what you need to do to find your next job.

Talk to Someone

Normally when someone loses their job, they tend to stay away from their friends and family. They feel embarrassed to have to tell them that their job did not work out and that they are back to square one. Remember that everyone has been in your shoes before when it comes to job searching. It can be a long and tedious process, but it will be worth it when you finally get to your dream job. If you are afraid that your loved ones will be criticizing your job hunting tactics and push their opinions onto you on what you should do, just tell them you just want a listener. Judgment is not going to help you find a job faster, but knowing someone is willing to give their time to listen to you without any interruptions will make a lot of difference. Just open up to someone that you trust so that you are not keeping your feelings inside with no one to know about them.

Build Relationships

Expanding your social life can be beneficial in looking for a new job. You can do this by joining a class or a club where you can meet people who have connections. There are job hunting clubs where people exchange business cards with each other, support each other in their unemployment grief, and offer solutions. Volunteering is another great way to help you get out into the community and make connections. You may discover through your volunteering that you have skills you did not know you had that can be added to your resume like being a leader, organized, attentive, quick thinking, etc.

Stay Positive

You may have been used to having the same routine when you had a group where you wake up at this certain time and come home at this certain time. The truth is that you still can except instead of waking up to go to work, wake up to begin your job search. You can go to the library or a cafe to be in a different environment than your home. Make a job searching plan of where you plan on job searching such as online job boards, newspapers, businesses to call, etc. Whenever you are feeling down, look at the part of your resume where you have listed your skills. This should make you feel good about yourself having skills that many others do not have that make you appealing to businesses. 

It is important to think about what you can control. You cannot control whether or not an employer calls you back or likes your application. All you can do is keep applying instead of waiting for an email or by the phone to hear back from that one company. Do not stop applying. The worst that can happen to you is that you hear back from a lot of companies and you have choices to make about where you want to work. Think if there are any new skills that you can learn, fix your resume or cover letter, or look back at the business cards you have collected and figure out who you can call. Telling yourself that you are going to give up finding a job will not help you find a job. The important thing you can do to ensure that you are no longer depressed about unemployment is doing everything you can to find a job and making positive connections along the way.


Located on the shore of Southern New Jersey, Enlightened Solutions is a recovery center that uses evidence-based therapies and holistic healing to treat addiction and mental illness. With the opportunity to learn about therapies that are keyed in to healing the human spirit and learning about new stress-reducing techniques centered around a 12-Step network, you will ensure a lasting recovery. For more information, please call us at 833-801-LIVE as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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