Self-Care During the Job Search

Searching for a job can be stressful, demoralizing and overwhelming. Dealing with constant rejection after spending considerable time applying to and interviewing for jobs can cause stress and lowered self-confidence. Eventually, this stress may lead to burnout. Therefore, it’s crucial to practice self-care during your job search. Some tips for taking care of your physical and emotional well-being during your job search:


Make Time For Exercise

Try to make time for physical activity every day. Try to change things up instead of sticking to one type of exercise to avoid boredom. Sign up for classes at your local gym or community center. Not only will you get social interaction but you’ll be more motivated when exercising with others. You can also set up your own inexpensive home gym to make exercise more convenient. With a yoga mat, some weights, and an under-desk elliptical, you’ll have all you need to stay in shape during your search.*

Eat Well

Diet is a huge part of your physical and mental well being. It’s easy to turn to junk food for comfort during hard times, but don’t fall into this trap. You’ll perform better mentally and physically if you maintain a healthy diet. Try to eat at the same times each day, make a healthy grocery list and stick to it, and avoid eating out as much as possible.

Maintain a Regular Sleep Schedule

Getting enough sleep is crucial to productivity. Not having a regular 8-5 job can lead to irregular sleep patterns. However, maintaining a regular sleep schedule will not only help you be more productive during your search, but also prepare you for starting back to work. Having trouble falling asleep? Try a white noise machine and a pillow spray with essential oils to help you relax.

Take Breaks

You may feel guilty for taking breaks from your job search. But taking a few days off can help you reset and return to the search with increased motivation. View breaks as part of your job search strategy, rather than a waste of time. Put breaks into your calendar so that you won’t forget. Once you start start back to work on your search, you’ll be recharged and ready to take on the challenges of job hunting.

Keep a Gratitude Journal

It’s hard to have a positive outlook when you’re out of work. That’s why keeping a gratitude journal is so important. Your entries don’t have to be major. Even something as small as a good cup of coffee or text from a friend can improve your day.

Celebrate Small Accomplishments

Congratulate yourself on the small things. Applying to a job you really want, going on an interview or reworking your resume are all things to celebrate. Take a minute to acknowledge your efforts and reward yourself in some way. Rewarding yourself for smaller steps motivates you to continue working towards your goal.

Set Boundaries

Learn how to set boundaries during your job search. Don’t answer calls or apply for jobs after a certain time. Allow for enough personal time during the day to take care of yourself. Also, consider what types of questions you will and will not answer during interviews. Some interview questions are outright illegal, while others are just too personal. Simply say, “I don’t feel comfortable discussing that topic” or “May I ask how that relates to the job?”. If an employer doesn’t respect your boundaries, you probably would not be happy working for them anyway.

Although many say searching for a job is a full time job, it can become more than that. You can allow the job search to consume you emotionally, mentally and even physically. This leads to stress, anxiety, depression and health issues. Put yourself first and you’ll be better positioned to give potential employers a great impression.


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