Top 10 Ways to Cope with a Job Transition

Keep your sanity while you search, change, or even if you lost your job

Job transitions can be stressful—whether they’re due to layoff, starting a new job or experiencing drastic changes in working conditions. If you’re facing a different work transition, consider the following:

1. Take an honest look at yourself. What are your strengths, weaknesses, or skills? How did those influence—positively or negatively—your transition? Be objective. “Don’t find fault, find a remedy.” Henry Ford

2. Step up your self-care. Significant changes are physically and emotionally taxing. You need self-care now more than ever. Pay attention to your sleep, diet, mood, and remember exercise is a great stress reliever.

3. Engage your curiosity. Consider whether you are in the right profession for you at this time. Engage in some, “what if” self-talk conversations, because it may be time for a change. Then do some serious research work.

4. Focus on what you want. Think less on what you don’t want. Keep your eye on the prize. Try to spend more time looking forward rather than backward. Where do you want to go professionally and personally?

5. Find support. Since your transition affects your family as well, it may be helpful to seek the outside help of friends or career professionals. Meanwhile, share your feelings with your immediate family; they are going through this experience too. Join some professional groups in the industries where you have an interest. Put yourself in networking situations.

6. Work on your thoughts. Keep a positive mindset. Monitor your feelings and behaviors. Calm your fears and reinforce your sense of hopefulness. Changes happen all the time. Stay open to new possibilities. Visualize a successful realistic outcome in vivid detail.

7. Surround yourself with reassurance. Write down your accomplishments. Show the impact of your contributions in quantifiable terms; time, process, or dollars saved. Write down your lessons learned.

8. Create your rite of passage. Making a job transition is a full-time job. Approach it with a work plan and determination. Incorporate mini celebrations when you stick to your plan. Be patient.

9. Let go. Don’t worry about of how things were “supposed to be” and accept “how things are.” Find appreciation for what is. Purposefully connect with active people who are trying to accomplish something positive. Avoid wasting time.

10. Keep things in perspective or try a new perspective. The world is always changing. Keep up with current events and industry changes. Don’t get stuck. Be flexible. Remember, change is the only constant.

Your investment in self-reflection and planning for your future will pay off handsomely. If you need to talk out loud with a trained career professional I encourage you to get in touch.

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Brenda Goburn Smith