Dealing with Job Loss: 5 Tips to Help You Rebuild Your Self-Confidence

Thursday, September 23, 2010 13:06

By Ellen Brown

If you’ve been laid-off in the past couple years, do you feel like your self -confidence has slowly eroded? Many of my coaching clients who lost their jobs in the Recession certainly felt that way at a certain point.

But the good news is that there’s hope. Do yourself a favor, though. Start rebuilding your self-confidence now, rather than “hitting bottom” and needing to rebuild from ground zero. That way, when you walk into that next job interview, you’ll look and feel confident and assured, which is important, because, if you don’t feel confident, you won’t project that attitude in an interview.

If you’re not sure how to give yourself a boost, here are five ideas to get you started:

  • Review your successes – That’s right. When you go back and recall your successes, both job-related and otherwise, and write them down and review them regularly, it will actually make you feel better. Here are a few questions I ask clients to help them remember their successes:
    • When, in your life, have you felt the most successful, in general?
    • What are the greatest strengths you bring to the table as a prospective employee?
    • What were your greatest successes in your last job?
    • Tell me a little bit about when you have felt the most successful in terms of your personal relationships.
    • What are you doing in your life today that makes you feel successful?
    • Commit to a new project or goal – This “project” could be just about anything, as long as it’s something that would give you a sense of accomplishment. It could be running a marathon or learning to cook French food. But make sure it’s something you REALLY want to do, not something you think you should want to do or something that someone else believes would serve you well.
    • Volunteer – It may sound counter productive to volunteer your time, when what you really need is a job, preferably yesterday, that pays good money. But volunteering is a wonderful way to boost your self-confidence. Not only does volunteering bring us together with other people who are doing good works, (which can lift our spirits), it also can help us develop new skills and reminds us, firsthand, of our talents and strengths. And the best part is that when we’re giving back to the community, we just feel happier.
    • Partner with a job-seeking friend – Searching for a new job, especially when you’ve been doing so for an extended period of time, can feel like traveling a lonely road. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Team up with a fellow job seeker or two and meet with them daily or weekly at the library or a local coffee house to share goals, encourage one another, and hold each other accountable. Don’t know anyone, who’s looking for a job? How about joining a job club? Check out this post I wrote on the subject awhile back: http://ellen-brown.com/blog/2010/02/18/dealing-with-job-loss-joining-a-career-club-can-help-you-boost-confidence-during-job-search/
      • Hire a coach – Coaches can encourage you and listen to you, and help you overcome the limiting beliefs that may be holding you back. They can also help you formulate a plan to return to work and keep you on track. One of the toughest aspects of navigating a difficult transition such as job loss is that so many feelings – including anger, sadness, and confusion — bubble up. And if you don’t take the time to feel your feelings and move through them, they may leak out in job interviews or in your personal life. And believe me, that’s not such a pretty sight. Good coaches also serve as a guiding light, helping you believe in yourself as you are navigating this tumultuous time.

So what or who has helped YOU rebuild your self-confidence, when dealing with job loss or another difficult transition?

I’d love to hear what you have to say. Please leave a comment, here, on Stepping Stones, by scrolling down to the bottom of the page.

Are you dealing with job loss, the death of a loved one, or another challenging life transition? If so, I’d love to help out. Visit my website at http://www.ellen-brown.com to sign up for an introductory coaching session or a coaching package that’s right for you. Since coaching sessions are conducted by phone, I can work with clients anywhere in the world.

Ellen Brown is a certified professional coach based in Cleveland, OH.

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