GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOTV)- More than six years after the Great Recession, there are many people still struggling to find work and provide for their family. Last month’s U.S. jobs report shows that 2.8 million people have been unemployed for more than six months.
Maybe you’re a part of the group that has struggled to find work for a long time, or perhaps you’ve been on the job search for less time, but haven’t had any leads or positive news on the prospects of work. This is undoubtedly a tough time, but it’s important to remember a few things during your difficult job search.
1. This won’t last forever.
It may seem like you’ll never find work and that there is little reason for hope. Don’t fall into that trap! One of the worst things that can happen to your job search is thinking negatively or being surrounded by people who are discouraging.
Take proactive steps to eliminate any talk or thoughts in your life that aren’t positive and always looking to the future. Remember that every no is getting you closer to a yes. With every application, networking connection made, and interview, you have something to learn and a way to improve.
2. Your identity isn’t found in a job.
This is a hard lesson to learn, but too often we let our jobs become how we identify our value or self-worth. Unfortunately, if you place your value in something that you can lose – like a job, a car, or a home – you’ll experience a very tough identity crisis when any of those are taken out of your life without your say.
The famous phrase, “Work to live, don’t live to work,” couldn’t be more true. When you find that next job, remember that this job, just like the last one, is not the determination of your value as a person. Friends and family, your community, or faith, are what provide value in your life.
So while you may not be working right now, when you do get that next job, work hard and learn as much as you can about the job and company. But don’t make the mistake of tying your identity to the work you do for 40 hours out of the 168 you have each week.
3. Don’t try to do this alone.
Think about the last job you had. Did you know someone who worked at the company? Maybe you had a friend who reviewed your resume before you submitted it to check for typos. Or, did you meet someone who knew about the job while you were at your friend’s birthday party?
If any of those are similar to your last experience while looking for work, why do you think it will be any different now? Finding a job is a full-time job itself, and very few people work by themselves. Let your already established network of friends and family help you connect with your next job opportunity. And if you haven’t worked with one already, reach out to a staffing company and let them use their network of business connections to help you find work.
4. A part-time or temporary job could be your entry into a full-time career.
Don’t be so quick to put down the idea of working a temporary job. Often, small businesses hire people on a temporary basis to see if they will be a good fit for the team before adding them on permanently.
The next time you see a listing for a part-time job in a field you are interested in, strongly consider applying and being ready to show you’re dependable and excited to learn new skills.
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