Not only does long-term unemployment knock your confidence, it also creates anxiety and despair about the future; after all, the vast majority of people on benefits want to get back into work as quickly as possible, so they can earn money and make a decent living.
If you have recently lost your job, here are my top 3 tips to implement immediately for a speedy return back into the workplace:
1. Get your CV professionally done
You might think that your CV looks good and reads well, but chances are, it's not quite right yet to attract the attention of employers and get you interviews.
Many people make the mistake not getting their CV done as soon as they have lost their job, and they end up wondering, why they hardly get any interviews. A couple of months down the line without any success is wasted time and money.
Here in the UK, you can access free support at your local job centre, or ask them to refer you to one of their contractors. Sometimes you need to push for this, because they tend to offer this service only to people, who have been unemployed for more than six months - but you don't want to be out of a job that long before you take a second look at your CV!
If this fails, search online for "professional cv writing service". Make sure you search for a service provider in your country, as the requirements for CVs often vary.
At this stage, be clear on the type of work you want to do but also are prepared to do, so the relevant skills, knowledge and experience are included in your CV.
2. Looking for a new job is a full-time job
Only because you lost your job doesn't mean you can now sleep in. Make sure you establish a daily routine of getting up early, do your job searches, contact potential employers, network, etc. Keep active, including regular exercise, which will help you stay energised and motivated.
Why not join a work club, where you can get support and meet other people? This way you will also feel less isolated. Again, search online for "work clubs" to find one in your local area.
3. Do your research
Whether you want to stay in your existing career, are thinking about a new direction or even self-employment, now is the ideal time to think your options through and find out more about new possibilities. Talk to people in your chosen field, or even try to find some voluntary work that will keep you busy, connected to the work place but also will teach you new skills - and it looks great on your CV!
If you have been out of work for longer, and you have followed my 3 tips above, then you could ask the Tarot for more insight to help you set up a new back-to-work action plan for the next 4 - 6 weeks.
Shuffle your deck and pick a card for each question:
- What kind of jobs am I currently attracting? - Do the jobs you attract align with your skills and needs? Are you happy with what you are attracting, or do you need to make any adjustments in your presentation or the kind of jobs you are focusing on?
- What impression does my CV make, when potential employers receive it? - Does it catch their attention? Does it stand out? What impression do they get about your personality when they read it? What improvements can you make to it regarding content and presentation?
- What impression do I make in an interview? - The vibes you are radiating, e.g. energetic, positive, enthusiastic, knowledgeable, shy, introvert/extrovert or unprepared, deflated, detached etc.
- What do I need to change in order to improve my chances of getting a job? - Just one task you can focus on to make a difference and change your fortune.
- What is coming up over the next four weeks that I need to pay attention to and can turn to my advantage? - Watch out for opportunities, options, obstacles, communication issues...the card in this position contains possibilities as well as ideas how to handle them.
The Tarot is an excellent tool to stay focused at a difficult time; it's not easy getting back into employment after having been out of work for a long time, especially when it has affected your self-worth. But fortunately, there is much you can do to turn your situation around.
Try this spread, and please do let me know in the comment box below, what new insights you have gained from it.
I'd also like to hear from you, how you have been keeping a positive mindset, how you have got back into work and any tips you'd like to pass on to others, who are currently going through this difficult situation.
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