Create a job search schedule and stick to it.
Good time management is important to stay focused and on task. Start by deciding what hours of the day you're going to devote to your job search - then start and stop on time each day. Imagine that you are your own boss and hold yourself accountable.
Organize your job search space.
An untidy environment reduces productivity and creates distractions. Treat your desk, spare bedroom, or kitchen table as your new office and keep things in their place.
Avoid the couch.
The time-warp that exists somewhere between the couch and the television will inevitably reduce the productivity of your job search when a quick break turns into a rerun marathon. Staying off the couch also prevents feelings of listlessness. When you need a break, consider taking a short walk instead. Regular exercise helps the body produce endorphins - chemicals that create a sense of happiness and well-being and maintain high levels of energy.
Set goals for yourself.
Try to have a goal every day and every week that you can accomplish. Achieving goals creates positive reinforcement for all of the hard work that you're doing and eventually all of those smaller goals add up to your ultimate goal: finding a job.
Okay, so you're working in your kitchen and you are surrounded by all of the mid-afternoon snacks you used to wish you had at work. But we all know that junk food leads to a nap on the couch, which then leads to a day lost watching television or playing around online. Focus on eating plenty of fruits and veggies that will help maintain your energy and endorphin levels.
Spend time with family and friends.
If you have recently lost a job, or are having an especially difficult time finding a job, you know how your situation can take an emotional toll on you and those around you. Feelings of guilt, sadness, and embarrassment often cause people to retreat into their living rooms. Others focus so much energy on their job applications that they forget about their social circles (and their most important networking opportunities).
Stick to the schedule you have created for yourself on weekdays, but take the weekends off to spend meaningful time with family and friends. Not only will they provide you with a critical support system to help you get through this difficult period, your time off will help keep you rejuvenated for your job search.
Above all else, stay positive.
If you are struggling, don't be afraid to ask for help with feelings of depression and sadness. We all need help at times. Regaining a positive, optimistic outlook about your job search increases the chances that you will find employment. An upbeat outlook will make you come across as a strong candidate in interviews.
For more information about feelings of sadness or depression, contact your community mental health program by going to www.oregon.gov/DHS/mentalhealth/.