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Day In, Day Out

Mental health for your job search

➔ We recently heard an older job seeker who had successfully scaled the mountain top and found himself a job – one that he was very happy in. (Good for him!) In recounting his story, he also talked about being a silver medal winner. That’s someone who goes right down to the wire for a particular position, only to end up in second place.

Second place may be fine for a silver medal at the Olympics, but it’s not much consolation in a job search. There are no prizes for finishing second in this arena.

It’s OK to feel rotten

Naturally, to come so close and to not land the job is a major downer. That’s to be expected and for those who have found themselves in that position, you know the pain and what it can do to your psyche.

Our silver-medal friend said that he experienced this more than once and it really deflated his drive to get back out there. Unfortunately, as we all know, while getting back out there is a must, our friend took an interesting approach.

The day after learning that he wasn’t selected for the position, when his spirits were as dampened as you can imagine, he decided to take a “lick your wounds day.” Psychologically, he was wounded and needed a break.

For him, “lick your wounds day” meant playing golf. For others it might mean working in garden, finishing off a good book, or even binge-watching some television series or movies. Whatever it is, take a day and do something for yourself. Recharge your batteries. Get away from the phone and email and resumes and jobs boards. Maybe it’s just a little alone time.

Our friend did have one caveat: take your lick-your-wounds day, but just one. Then you have to get back in the saddle and charge back out into the job search world. Taking more than one such day can devolve into a dangerous habit.

Anyone who has been out in the job search world for any amount of time knows that it can be a real roller coaster ride. Don’t be afraid to recharge with some downtime. But then, just as quickly, you have get yourself back into the game.


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