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Coping with the stress of losing your job

Coping with the stress of losing your job

Losing a job can be extremely stressful, and it’s quite normal to feel hurt, angry and fearful about the future. It’s likely that you have financial commitments to honour without your usual salary. 

You may even feel that being unemployed makes you less valuable. Perhaps the way the job came to an end has made you feel rejected and depressed.

However you’re feeling, it’s important that you don’t give up hope. Your job doesn’t define you as a person and you are still incredibly valuable to God and those around you. It’s important that you look after yourself and keep your spirits up as you search for a new opportunity.

It may be a good idea to:

Take a new class, undertake some training or join a club

Use the added time you have to do something worthwhile rather than wallowing at home. You’ll really thank yourself down the line, and who knows what opportunities and friendships will come along as a result.

Do some volunteering

Volunteering is a great way to gain experience and make a difference in your local area or even overseas. Volunteering can help to increase your sense of self-worth and will look great on your CV. It could lead to a paid role and may well expand your skillset. Find a charity that fits with your vision and values, and offer to help out wherever you are needed.

Hang out with supportive people

It’s tempting to push people away at times like this, but you really need a supportive network that will listen to your worries and give you helpful advice. If you’re the praying type, ask your friends and family to pray with you. Get outdoors and do fun things with your loved ones to take your mind off the job situation. If you don’t have a good network of friends, it may be worth speaking to your GP or church leader about counselling to help you through this difficult time.

Take regular exercise

If you’re anything like me, exercise is the last thing you feel like doing when you’re down and stressed, but it’s important that you keep active. Exercising regularly will help you stay in shape, focus your mind and release good endorphins. Find a style of exercise that you enjoy so you are able to sustain it and put together a motivating playlist to keep you going.

Eat well

Stress can make you feel like eating everything in sight or put you off food altogether, but try to stick to three healthy meals a day. Have a go at cooking with the kids, throwing a dinner party or meeting a friend for lunch. Cut down on toxins such as caffeine, alcohol and nicotine, which will make you feel worse in the long run, and drink lots of water.

Get plenty of sleep

You may find that losing your job has taken its toll on your sleep time. It can be difficult to switch your brain off if you’re feeling stressed. Run a warm bath and get into bed early with a good book so your mind is relaxed when the time comes to turn the light off. If you still can’t sleep, try to stay in bed and rest. Eventually your sleep pattern will resume, so don’t panic.

Start looking for other opportunities

You might not be ready right away to apply for other jobs, but it’s worth keeping an eye out for suitable posts and pray that the right opportunity will present itself. If you can’t face applying for jobs by yourself, ask for help. Set yourself a target, for example applying for three roles each week, and stick to it. Build fun things into the rest of the week so that you don’t become too fixated on finding a new role.