Life After Unemployment: Stepping Back Onto the Job Market

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You’ve been laid off and you’ve taken all the time you need to process what’s happened to you; now it’s time to find your footing and choose a new direction. You’ve come to terms with the situation and you’ve learned from the lessons and experiences of those around you (almost every professional person is laid off at least once by the age of 35)…and now it’s time to get back on the market. Here are five things to keep in mind as you move forward.

1. You have no permanent record.

Your past is in the past, and what happened to you is your business and yours alone. The reasons for your layoff don’t need to be shared with your potential employers. If you’re asked about it, answer honestly if you choose, but keep your answers short and positive, and quickly redirect the conversation back to your strengths and credentials. Don’t apologize, and don’t be baited or pressured into saying anything negative about yourself.

2. Refuse to carry burdens that don’t help you.

You may have been laid off because of bad luck, or a personal shortcoming, or a lack of knowledge, or a character flaw. But since you’ll probably never know the complete story, you’ll need to let go of any brooding that holds you back or undermines your confidence. No matter how you choose to accomplish this (a therapist, the help of friends and family, or personal will), you need to make it happen in order to move forward.

3. Take action every day.

Submit a set number of resumes every day, and spend a set number of hours each day networking, searching for positions, or taking care of practical tasks related to the job search. If you fall below your quota on a given day, make it up by the end of the week.

4. Get help.

The job search will be easier if you can lean on the advice and guidance of a friend, mentor, professional contact, or former coworker. Unemployment can be frustrating and isolating and a little outside perspective can go a long way.

For more information and more practical ways to put your layoff behind you and move on, reach out to the Little Rock job search and staffing experts at CSS.

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