Most people would agree, being unemployed sucks, especially if you’ve been desperately looking for a new job for quite some time. However, a change in your perspective about your downtime can open a new door of opportunities to land a new job. To get some insight into things to do while you’re unemployed, we caught up with Chandria Lucious Harris, M.S., a Career Services Specialist with Gen “Y & Z” engagement, recruitment and retention intelligence.
4 Things to Do While Unemployed
1. Maintain positive vibes
Finding the perfect career opportunity will make any jobseeker feel like they are on an emotional roller coaster. One minute, you’re happy to land interviews, the next minute you’re receiving rejection letters and your mood has shifted. But don’t take things personally, applying, interviewing, and getting rejected are all a part of the process and there is no way to skip this step. The best thing you can do is mentally prepare for how long it may take and be productive throughout your downtime.
Take action: Several studies report that exercise can reduce stress. Adopt a daily 30-minute routine of relaxation methods such as meditation, yoga, or exercise. Even listening to soft music and reading are all methods job seekers can use to stay calm and positive during the job search.
2. Network everyday
This is the perfect time to email or call friends, family, and former colleagues and let them know you’re job hunting. Positively narrate your availability for new opportunities and spend at least one hour a day connecting with professionals/confidants.
Take action: Use LinkedIn to engage with other professionals including experts, HR recruiters, and hiring managers in your industry. Search for people you’re interested in learning more about and request informational interviews. You can also join groups relevant to your industry and ask for feedback or respond to questions related to your area of expertise so you can build more meaningful relationships. Lastly, take your online professional relationships offline by inviting a pro in your area for coffee or lunch.
3. Stay up to date on trends
Just because you’re in between jobs, doesn’t mean you have to take time off from professional development. This is the perfect time to gain an additional certification, attend lunch and learns, watch webinars, and read latest industry news. Staying up on trends will prepare you for interviews and keep you involved in your industry while on the search.
Take action: Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google Alerts are great ways to stay up to date with trends happening in your industry. Beyond sharing articles, provide your perspectives on the topic; that way people begin to look at you as a go-to source in their field.
4. Tap into your creative genius – Unemployment provides a perfect opportunity to try the hobbies, home projects, or activities you’ve been dreaming about.
Take action: Take charge of your daily routine by scheduling a block of time to work on one of your creative endeavors.