How to look after your mental health when job seeking 

Looking for a job can be stressful and can have an impact on your mental health.  

You might be feeling the pressure because you’re in a role that makes you unhappy, or your circumstances have changed, and you need to change jobs. For those who have been given no choice, such as people facing redundancies, there may be additional feelings adding to the stress.

We’ve pulled together some ideas on how you can look after your mental health while job hunting. 

Talk to someone 

Mental health in job seeking - talk to someone

There are a lot of thoughts and feelings associated with job seeking, especially if you’ve been hunting for a long time.  

Don’t be afraid to share how you’re feeling with someone close to you. If there’s a key message that’s been highlighted around mental health, it’s the importance of being able to talk to someone.  

What’s that saying, ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’. Sometimes just saying something out loud can make a big difference to how you’re feeling and provide you with some relief.  

Practice self care 

Job seeking can sometimes impose a feeling of panic, which usually results in a pressure to do as much as humanly possible to find a job quickly.  

Sitting at a laptop for hours on end with a feeling of despair is unhealthy! We suggest breaking your day up to balance out your feelings and allow for some self care.  

Make time in your schedule for downtime. Perhaps do an hour of job hunting, followed by an hour of something you enjoy. Then repeat later in the day.  

Self care can be anything from walking the dog, reading a book, having a bath, doing a hobby or simply just switching off and relaxing.  

Use the opportunity  

Try to keep yourself busy while out of work, it can help with your mental health.  

Think about the odd jobs you’ve been meaning to do, hobbies you’ve wanted to take up or people that you want to spend time with.  

If money isn’t a problem, then consider taking a last minute holiday or doing some travelling.  

Likewise, this could be an opportunity for some additional training or development. Either to further your career or re-train in another area.  

Once you’re employed you won’t have as much free time, so make the most of a bad situation.  

Keep to a routine 

When struggling with mental health, trying to keep to a routine can be helpful.  

Mental health in job seeking - stick to routine

There’s a close link between mental health and sleep. A Lack of sleep can result in poor mental health, just like poor mental health can also result in a lack of sleep.  

Keeping a routine of getting up in the morning and going to bed at a reasonable time can help.  

If you’re struggling to get to sleep, the Mind website has some great tips which may be useful.  

Don’t be afraid to ask for support with your mental health 

Speaking to a friend or family member is absolutely the right thing to do.  

However, there are times when you may need to speak with a professional – and that is ok and nothing to be ashamed of.  

You can receive support and guidance on mental health from: 

Your GP 

A trained therapist 

Charity and third-sector organisations  

Get in touch today

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