Quite frequently the candidates you’re looking at have been applying to different jobs for a while. So it’s useful to keep in mind that the person you’re seeing is not the employee you will hire, but someone in the middle of a difficult journey.
Setting out to search for a job can sometimes be long and arduous. And, even if this isn’t the first time you’ve set out to look for a job, it’s never an easy or fun task. There are usually some ups, but are generally a disproportionate amount of downs.
Unemployment has long been tied to depression, in 2012 there was even a study that found it could be worse than the loss of a spouse. Here are seven triggers that can cause mental distress while searching for a job.
Uncertainty of what the future holds
Unemployment fills a person’s life with uncertainty – from where their next paycheck will come from, to whether they’ll hear back from employers, and even if they’ll be forced to uproot themselves and move in search of better opportunities. There is no concrete end date, since you can never know when you’ll finally land a position.
Not hearing back from any potential employers during a job search
When an individual has been sending out their resume, but has not been getting any responses in return, it can weigh on them and make them start questioning their qualifications and even their self-worth.
Nobody likes any kind of rejection. But it’s always tougher to hear that you’ve been rejected for a job you were excited about or felt you were perfectly qualified for. When the number of rejections a job seeker receives starts outweighing the positive replies they’re getting, that can seriously impact their mood and push them towards depression.
Not being in control
When someone is looking for a job, it can often feel like they’re putting the direction of their lives in the hands of whoever is willing to hire them. And after they’ve done everything possible to impress an employer through their resume and during the application process, the rest is out of their control. Sometimes even if you’re highly regarded, you’re still not given the role because the level of competition was so great.
The feeling that you have no agency often leads to despondency, and job searching can often spiral into a sense that your happiness is controlled by others.
Never been unemployed before
Being unemployed can be a stressful experience for anyone, but this is especially true for someone who has never had to face this before. A person who has already gone through a period of unemployment previously can always reassure themselves that they have already been through this and successfully found employment, so it’s possible to do it again. For someone who has never faced a difficult job search, it’s an extremely difficult experience.
Trying to manage financially
Even though a person’s employment may have ended, their bills and everyday expenses aren’t put on hold. During a job search, dealing with bills, paying rent or mortgage, and putting food on the table can be a burden that weighs heavily.. If they aren’t able to manage themselves financially, their feelings of self-worth may be severely diminished, leading to depression and anxiety, among other feelings.
Feelings of embarrassment
Many people identify themselves with the job they hold. During a job search, when someone is unemployed, their identity isn’t solidly attached to any job. As a result, they may suffer from feelings of shame or embarrassment, especially in social settings or in talking to others.
Here are several effective tips for battling depression during your search for employment:
The endorphins released during exercise help to relieve stress and improve mood. So, when the feelings of stress or depression start to loom overhead, getting in some physical activity can help nip them in the bud.
Participate in productive distractions
It’s important to take breaks from your job search, no matter how committed you are. Getting your mind off of the job search can help you avoid getting in a rut, and can give you something to look forward to doing, when the job search isn’t panning out so well. Finding something that gives you a sense of fulfilment is easy through organisations that bring people together though shared interests, such as meet ups, and community clubs.
Keep a job search journal
Tracking your job search progress through a journal can help you identify the things that worked and what didn’t work, so you can make adjustments to your job search approach. It can also give you a great perspective on the progress you’re making and all of the great strides you’ve made in your hunt. A free online journal, like Penzu can give you the platform to keep track of your job search, and 750 Words , Essay writing service or Custom essay tools can help you develop and hone your writing skills for use in your journal, as well as in your future job.
Unemployment is a stressful time, no matter how many times an individual has experienced it. Use these tips to look after your mental health during a job search.