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I lost my job! Now what? 8 Strategies for Staying Positive After Job Loss

mindset 3I’ve been there – receiving the stomach-churning, what-the-heck-am-I-going-to-do-now news: “Your job position has been eliminated.” No matter what your job and financial situation are, it can shake the ground underneath you and have your mind and body reeling with anxiety.

After hearing the news, it’s essential to take action on the basics as soon as possible – file for unemployment (if you’re eligible) and make decisions about your health insurance coverage. At the same time, keeping a positive mindset is just as important.

Your mindset can make or break your success when it comes to managing job loss and creating your next career step, and it’s easy to start thinking about the worst-case scenarios. Instead, you need empowering thoughts and positive energy to pursue new opportunities, engage with your network and confidently approach prospective employers and clients.

Here are eight strategies to cultivate a positive mindset after a job loss:

  1. Connect with loved ones. Share the news with your trusted friends and family members so you can feel their love and support. This can be a great comfort and help you realize you’re not alone. Losing a job can bring up feelings of embarrassment or thoughts of “I’m not good enough.” Let your loved ones remind you of your fabulousness and strengths. They can also help you by sharing their professional contacts and letting you know about job opportunities.
  2.  Get inspired by others’ stories. You can shift your thoughts and energy by hearing others’ stories about how they turned similar (or worse) situations into positive, empowering ones. Victim to Victory. Let their paths inspire and guide yours. Find these stories through various media – TV shows, blogs, articles, podcasts.
  3. Create & implement an action plan. Having an action plan will help you feel more empowered and in control of the situation. To help you prioritize and stay focused, put your actions and related timelines in writing. Refer to it daily and celebrate your accomplishments. Some sample actions items: Review your finances and determine where you can live lean until your next great career move is realized. Update your LinkedIn.com profile. Research companies of interest. Schedule coffee with your contacts. Request recommendations from colleagues. Update your resume. Apply for relevant jobs.
  4. Work out, eat right and chill out. Sweat out stress and keep the positive energy flowing by exercising and eating right. Take time for a walk in the park and a movie with a friend. When your mind relaxes, creative ideas can flow and guide your action plan. This self-care puts you in the right state for the work you need to do.
  5.  Let go of the blame. You may ask yourself “Why?” or “Why me?” when you lose your job. At some point it’s important to realize – it doesn’t matter why. You can spend time blaming someone else and being angry, or you can use your energy to create a new path and career. The latter will serve you much better and help you get to where you want to be.
  6.  Remain grateful for what you do have. It can be easy to focus on lack after a job loss – such as “I can’t do this” or “I can’t buy that” now that I’ve lost my job. To keep a positive mindset, inventory the great things in your life. Your loved ones. Your good health. The roof over your head. The opportunity to create the career you want.
  7. Believe in your grand future. Create a vision board that reflects your desired life and career, and look at it every day to stay inspired and motivated. Ensure you’re connecting with friends and colleagues who have positive mindsets and also see your gifts. Envisioning your next career step as a positive one will affect what actions you take and how you approach those actions. And yes, you’ll need to get out of your comfort zone to achieve that career goal. Shift from a survival mentality to a “thrival” one.
  8. Create instead of search. Put yourself in the driver’s seat of your career. Instead of thinking of this as a “job search process” think about it as a “career creation” process. Not only is the second approach more empowering, but it is also more accurate. Your mindset, your actions, your energy will determine what happens next.

Losing a job can suck. Let’s acknowledge that. It’s not healthy to suppress feelings of anxiety or fear. Once you acknowledge them, though, ensure you’re setting yourself up for success by utilizing these 8 strategies. And maybe you’ll be in a happier, better place in the next step of your career journey. That’s what happened to me!

Please share which of these strategies resonates the most with you using the comments section below:

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