We spend a lot of our lifetime at work. So, what do you do if you’ve lost your job unexpectedly? How do you survive and cope with the strain it takes on your body, your mind and your life?

To say the last two years has been challenging for businesses is an understatement. Even with the economy picking back up, companies have struggled to meet targets and bring in customers. So many businesses have closed or downsized, now trying to re-build everything they lost. So if you have been caught up in this – lost your job or struggling to find consistent more permanent work – it can take its toll on you, your family and your way of living.

Becoming unemployed suddenly can have an array of effects – emotionally you may be feeling upset, sad, angry, at a loss. But there’s also the financial aspect – the stress to find another job or more consistent work. So many individuals are casual or contractors, not knowing where their next job will be. It can leave you with many questions. You may not quite know your intended direction or how you’re going to get through this tough time.

Woman made redundant lost your job ways to cope mental health

Loss of Confidence

Do you know what type of job you want to work in next?
What if you haven’t had to look for a job in such a long time, your resume isn’t up to date, and you don’t know where to start? It is understandable for you to feel a loss of confidence and identity after a job loss, particularly if it’s not something you were planning on. But there are ways you can ensure you cope mentally, so you can get back on your feet and give yourself the best opportunity to succeed.

9 Ways to Cope if You’ve Lost Your Job?

1.Try not to worry – it’s normal to feel loss or grief. This can result in experiencing a range of feelings from disbelief, denial, anger, irritability, sadness, and fear.

2. Consider the way you are thinking – what are you saying to yourself about the situation? Do you need some advice and support to challenge this and depersonalise some thoughts? Are your thoughts negative towards yourself?

3. Remember – it’s not you who has been made redundant rather the role you worked in.

4. Reach out – get practical help in job seeking skills such as resume development so you feel organised and more confident.

5. Ask for support – think about asking for some additional support to assist you through the transition stage, to move towards managing and accepting the change in a more helpful way.

6. Don’t let the basics fly out of the window – try to keep a good routine of sleep, eating regularly and exercising, even if you don’t feel like it at the time.

7. Talk about your feelings – talk to those close to you whom you trust, rather than withdrawing and isolating yourself.

8. Take time to breathe or learn to meditate – it can make all the difference in how you feel going into interviews.

9. Don’t rush big decisions – there is a fine line between doing nothing and rushing into making decisions, just so you feel like you are doing something. Take your time to make the right decisions for yourself.

Once you start the new application process, you want to be at your best and feel confident and fresh to take on interviews. It’s common to feel pressure to accept the first job offer to return to work. However, ensure sustainable decisions are made where possible. You want to ensure you enjoy your new position, and it’s right for you and your family/situation in the long term.

If you feel you could use some additional support and direction through this new transition in your life, don’t hesitate to reach out and speak to one of our team. Sometimes some guidance to give you new direction and meaning can make a big difference.

Written by Rebecca Deane – Principal Clinical Psychologist – www.creatingchange.net.au