How to reduce the stress of looking for a job



There has been a transfer of power from employers to employees in the marketplace, with a record one million UK vacancies in the three months to August for the first time, according to the Office for National Statistics.

That means now is a great time to find a suitable job, negotiate the pay you deserve, and fit in things like childcare or flexible working with a strong hand as companies desperately seek workers.

Here’s what you need to know about how to reduce the stress of looking for a job at the end of the leave.

Why is the job search stressful?

If you find yourself feeling stressed during your job search, the first thing to know is that you are not alone.

“There can be no greater pressure than the financial pressure to ask where your next paycheck is coming from and how you are going to pay the bills and buy the food to put on the table,” Dave Smithson, COO at Anxiety UK, said The Big Issue.

“This stress, this pressure, is enormous, especially at a time when we are all coming out of this pandemic,” he said, adding that it could contribute to anxiety and depression and exacerbate mental health issues. .

“Money and mental health are often linked. If you find it difficult to keep control of your money, you may find that it has a negative effect on your mental health, ”Paul Spencer, head of policy and campaigns for the charity, told The Big Issue. Mind for mental health.

Before starting your research, Spencer added, “Try to remember that there is nothing to be ashamed of about losing your job or being unemployed, you are not to blame.”

What is the state of the labor market?

When it comes to reducing stressors and eliminating the causes of anxiety, if you leave the leave regime, it is worth remembering that today’s job market is not the place to be. same.

“The world of work that employees on leave come back to is very different from what they might have left 12 to 18 months ago,” Andrew Hunter, co-founder of job search engine Adzuna, told The Big Issue. “There has been a transfer of power from the employer to the employee. “

Hunter added, “I would say there has never been a better time to enter the workforce, at least in the last 15-20 years.”

“There are over 1.1 million vacancies up for grabs, many companies and in a number of different industries are hiring staff. So there is a lot of choice and the power really lies with the job seeker, “he said,” so this should be a stress relieving point. “

How to make the job search less stressful?

The key to preventing the job search from invading all aspects of your life is to block designated time slots in which you search and apply for positions.

“It is important to be organized when approaching your job search and to allocate a specific part of the day to examine the market, understand which roles might be applicable to you and apply in a structured manner within a compartmentalized time frame.” , Hunter mentioned.

For example, around 5 p.m. you might want to put your laptop away, turn a worktable into a dining table, and mentally mark your job search over for the day.

“There is a real risk of looking for a job and letting it become an emotional roller coaster and hijack your life and every hour of the day I think it’s really important to find a balance between looking for a job. proactive employment and the simple return to a normal day. life today, ”he added.

What tools can I use to facilitate the job search?

When it comes to finding jobs, there are plenty of job search platforms out there, from Reed to Indeed to The Big Issue job site.

Tracking your apps can be done by deploying simple software like Google Doc or Sheets – to make sure you follow up quickly, meet deadlines, and track your progress.

There are many resources online for finding resume and cover letter templates. Hunter, from Adzuna, said that his company’s ValueMyResume tool helps potential employees get the wages they deserve.

To make sure you effectively market your skills in cover letters and interviews, Kevin Parker, Managing Director of HireVue, told The Big Issue that the STAR framework can prioritize your strengths.

“Be prepared to answer questions about previous work or school challenges by including reflections on the status, task, activity, and outcome (STAR) of your work on a challenge,” Parker said.

“The STAR framework is particularly useful for open-ended questions about your experiences (eg, ‘How do you work as a team?’?),” He added.

How can I prepare for a job interview?

Interviews can be stressful, but in today’s job market, potential employees can walk into the interview room knowing the power has turned in their favor.

Beforehand, familiarize yourself with the people who will interview you, their role in the company and their integration into its mission.

“Read the job description carefully or two or three times before you interview so you know exactly what the company is looking for,” Hunter said.

Mentally prepare your bulleted list of things demonstrating your strengths – skills, successful trivia – that you absolutely want to mention. So relax and be yourself.

To calm the nerves before the interview, Smithson, of Anxiety UK, said to focus on your breathing.

“If you’re sitting in the waiting room waiting to be called in for the interview and you can feel that panic growing, try using a simple breathing exercise,” Smithon said.

“The key thing to remember is to try to make sure your inhale is shorter than your exhale. It can help you get out of fight or flight mode, he said.

Hunter added that if you are offered a position, now is a great time to negotiate based on your needs: a salary you deserve, childcare and a flexible work situation that is right for you. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you need.

Above all, how can you stay calm when looking for a job?

To cope with the stress of being out of work, some people may be working on job applications late in the evening, munching on their free time. This can be dangerous because free time to relax is vital for recharging your batteries.

“Remember to be kind to yourself, take care of yourself, and spend time thinking about what makes you happy and fulfilled,” said Spencer, of Mind. “Maybe you could write a list of all the skills and qualities you have and take a moment to celebrate them.”

“Try to invest a little bit in personal care and a little ‘time for myself’,” Smithson said.

Taking care of yourself can be anything that forces you to be in the moment and stop thinking about the pressures on your shoulders.

“Cooking, baking, gardening, sewing, knitting, crochet, yoga – there is a whole host of truly mindful activities that allow you to focus on what you are doing and not let your mind wander or mull over problems”, he added.

If things pile up and get too important, remember that there is always help and support networks to draw on.

Never be afraid to take the load off and tell your friends and family about the pressures of the job search. “Historically, job hunting has been a pretty private search experience,” Hunter said. “But this taboo is slowly but surely disappearing.”

Anxiety UK helps people access therapy at affordable rates, and Mind offers a range of advice and guidance if you feel in crisis. Both charities run peer support groups to connect with people experiencing the same stress.

“It sounds a bit cliché,” Smithson said, “but a shared problem is a problem halved.”



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