Looking for a job is a full time exhausting job! Between the personalized résumés, group interviews, job fairs, craigslist, mass emails and calling your headhunter every ten minutes, you’ve turned into a workaholic without an income.
Pretty soon your search for a good job in accounting has morphed into a search for anything with a desk. Your savings depletes and you wonder, could I be a teacher? A shoe salesperson? A road worker? Desperation sets in, so you acquiesce to be an aspiring barrista only to find you’re not actually qualified to make a latte! Now, your self-esteem is reaching new levels of low.
It’s a formidable test of your faith to wait for something you desperately want. If you have the pressure of children or other financial obligations piling up, you may be questioning if there is any rhyme or reason to your life at all.
Suddenly your gratitude lists are out the door and your thoughts are coming from a place of fear. And there’s plenty of fear to spare right now. Every day the news is overwhelmingly bleak. If you believe everything you’ve heard and read, you might as well curl up and give up.
To get through this, you’re going to have to figure out what you believe and how you are going to gather your strength to make it to the next destination. Looking for a job will force you to ask, “What makes my life meaningful without a job?” Answer the questions below to know.
Who is the authentic you?
If your main place of socialization and interaction with others is the workplace, being home looking for a job is going to be isolating. Even if you have a house full of people, it’s going to be jarring. Roles in families get shaken up – especially if you are used to being the primary breadwinner. Being happy to see you so much can turn to accusations of eating tomorrow’s dinner, pretty fast.
You are going to have to do some self-parenting, self-cheerleading and overall rev up your self-care to a whole new level. Get out of the house every single day. Exercise, sunshine and social interaction must be purposely scheduled. Your job when you are looking for a job is to maintain and improve yourself. You are getting ready for the next place in your career. Prepare to take flight.
What’s in your suitcase?
Insecurity and self-doubt, or confidence and willingness? Do an inventory of your last job. Who did you like and why? Who did you dislike and why? What was your role overall? Were you comfortable or would you like to change your role? Every night before you go to bed, imagine yourself in your ideal workplace. How are you treated by others and how do you treat your coworkers? What time do you arrive and go home? What style is the workplace – modern? Antiques? Mac or PC? Your authentic self knows what your gifts are and what kind of occupation would be a tailored to you. Let it speak to you in images as you drift to sleep. Hold on to your core – it knows where to lead you.
Are you emotionally centered?
Staying centered doesn’t come naturally to most people. Adopt a mantra for when your fear comes knocking. My next job is coming at the perfect time. This transition will be very good for me. It will diminish any negativity. One of the hardest things to do is to guard your emotional well being from others who don’t realize they are sabotaging you with statements like, “You lost your job! There is nothing out there.” Misery loves company – so don’t be miserable. No matter what the papers or anyone says around you, you are only looking for one job. Just because a car plant closes in Michigan doesn’t mean that the one job you are searching for will never materialize. So laugh off others who bemoan their situation because if you stay in action and focus your vision, their experience will have no power over yours.
How much is enough?
You may find yourself facing big scary financial truths. If you cannot afford your home, move. If you cannot afford your schooling, take a break. A financial reality check can be crushing, but there is so much freedom in knowing that you are living within your means. And your means are going to change. Because that’s just how change happens. One day you are having a garage sale and the next you are showing up to your new job. Being in action creates its own train of miracles. Unemployment is a gift in disguise. Pare down the things in your life that are unimportant and focus yourself in ways you never imagined. If you allow your life to enter the slipstream of financial reality, things are going to change. It’s going to feel uncomfortable without a doubt – but you are being truly honest to the universe. You are building a new sturdy basket into which wealth can flow.
Finally, know without a doubt that you will work again. It may come quickly it may come later, but you will not be unemployed for the rest of your life. Keep your eye on the things that are truly important. If money can fix it, it’s a situation. If money can’t fix it, it’s a problem.
Being jobless is about handling the inconvenience of not having your usual income one day at a time – with your heart open, your mind manifesting and your eye on the horizon. It’s a test of faith, it’s a matter of belief, and it’s actually an inside job.
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