10 Unemployment Survival Strategies

Unemployment can be a very stressful time especially during the recession which is why I decided to write this post for people who are currently in this situation. I am sure there are many. Hopefully these survival strategies will see you through the hard times…

  1. Keep Your Head Up – Try not to blame yourself for being unemployed as it was something that was out of your control and not necessarily a failing on your part. It is important to keep a positive outlook even in gloomy times. Feeling down may be justified but it will prevent you from taking action to change the situation. Try not to worry what others may be thinking of you. They may not have any experience of be unemployed so have no idea what you are going through. If you take out the emotions the challenge you face is logical one that you can address.

  2. Eat Well And Stay Healthy – This is a classic time when you may find yourself reaching for ‘comfort food’ such as chocolate or fast food. It is important to rein this in and minimise this behaviour. While it may comfort you in the short-term it will not make you feel good in the long term. If fact you will probably feel even worse afterwards. The same could be said of alcohol as getting hammered will not solve your problems and will deplete your bank account even further. This isn’t ideal if you are currently not getting any income! Keeping a balanced healthy diet will keep you focused on the task at hand which is get back into work.

  3. Maintain Regular Exercise – If you can, try and keep fit. Go for runs, do physical sport and do regular exercise at home if you have limited finances. This will help dissipate the tension and stress you may be feeling. Also it keeps you sharp and this may give the edge in interviews.

  4. Ask yourself, ‘what job would you like if circumstances were more favourable?’ – It is important to ask yourself this question and come up with a written plan if possible. You may come up with ideas you never thought of and become inspired. A written plan focuses you mind to the task at hand.

  5. Ask yourself, ‘how should I approach companies I would want to work for?’ – Make list of companies where you be able to get your foot in the door and come up with a strategy of how to approach them. Maybe using email might be the best method or a phone call but don’t give up if you aren’t getting positive results straight away. If you choose to use recruitment agencies be careful as they have a tendency to rail-road into a job that may not be what you want. Remember they are a business and have to achieve tight financial targets every month. They may not have your best interest at heart however friendly they may sound on the phone. Ideally you should become your own recruitment consultant and then you won’t need them.

  6. Get Online – With wide range of social media and online tools available for the job search the internet can be an indispensable resource for job research and chasing up employment opportunities. Get chatting on Facebook and Twitter and see what you can find out. Maybe the company you want to approach already has a Twitter or Facebook page where you can contact them. You’ll have a lot of time on hands anyway so may as well use it wisely.

  7. Get Help With Your CV – It is important to get feedback from people in the industry about what they are looking for. How could your CV be tightened to make it more attractive employers? Input from friends and family may be helpful but ultimately they will not be the ones giving you the job.

  8. Read A Biography Of Someone You Admire – Quite often such people have gone through very difficult situations similar or worse than the one you are going through. However, chose your book well as biographies by Robbie Williams and Katie Price may not be packed with ‘pearls of wisdom’ which will help you through your current issues.

  9. Listen To Positive Music – Music can be a powerful reassuring force to you but you must make sure it is positive and not bringing you down into hole of self pity. As musical taste is personal only you can make this decision but something as melancholic as Coldplay may sink you down further into an emotional quagmire. Soul, funk, R&B and Jazz might be better options.

  10. Sleep Well – It may be tempting just to sleep in every morning as you have no work to get up for. Try to resist this temptation by not sleeping to much (or too little). Ensure that you give your days a routine and structure. Try going to bed and waking up at the same time during the week like you would do if you if were in work. This will keep you fresh, alert and positive.

Hopefully these points were of some use and if you have any more that would help please feel free to leave a comment below. There is no quick fix for being unemployed but sustained effort over a period of time will get you positive results eventually. Who knows you may start to see things in a different way. Losing a job has been the propelling factor for many to start up their own businesses and make a success of themselves.