The past year has been exceptionally tough for workers across many industries. Health workers have worked overtime in stressful conditions, as have supermarket staff and delivery drivers. Office workers were forced to work from home while hospitality staff couldn’t work for months. Thousands lost work altogether, with SouthAfrica’s unemployment rate recently hitting a record high.
If you fall into the latter group, it can be difficult to know what to do with yourself. You might want to spend all day wallowing initially – and that’s fine. Take time to come to terms with what happened. Once you’re ready to refocus your energy, there are lots of different ways to do so productively.
Reflect on the situation
Reflecting on your previous role and eventual departure could provide valuable learnings. What did you like about it, and what didn’t you like? What went wrong, and were you to blame? Where do you want to go next -both professionally and personally?
It may not seem like it at first, but a career break couldhelp you truly discover yourself.
Establish a new routine
Most of our routines are built around work, so it’s easy to let things slip without it. But routines are essential for productivity, as well as our physical and mental health.
That might mean working out and cooking in the mornings, then job hunting in the afternoons. Or the other way around. Either way, find new patterns to keep yourself on track.
Sharpen your skills (or learn new ones)
Redundancy and job hunting can both help identify skills that you don’t quite have down just yet. There are plenty of ways to go about learning, from free online courses to simply asking friends and family.
Alternatively, are there productive skills you can develop in other areas of life, such as running and physical fitness?
Start a side hustle
Losing a job creates an obvious income deficit which you’ll likely need to replace or at least supplement. Perhaps now’s the time to start that side hustle you’ve been planning!
Could you create a website to sell your photos, crafts or freelance services? Or if you want to get into trading, try a forex account that offers a welcome bonus of $30.
Assess your finances
If you’ve never been entirely on top of your finances, now’s your chance to assess your spending and savings, create a budget and build better financial habits.
Having a clear view of your financial situation will give you a better idea of where you stand and could allay some of your fears after losing work.
With all the above being said, often the most practical thing you can do after losing a job is look for a new one. Reassess your CV and portfolio and consider a wide range of openings, from jobs you’re qualified for to areas outside of your field.
You never know where your next career opportunity might take you!
Losing a job isn’t ideal – but it doesn’t have to be a total disaster. If you can use this time wisely, you could come back stronger than ever.