You are in your mid-20s, healthy and fit to do all the work in the world, trying to establish a stable professional life, when suddenly you realize that the job you have will eventually require you to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; your employer has started giving you piles of tasks to do, most of them are no longer part of your job, and snatching your social life out of your body. Yes, you should communicate this with him, but if there are no concrete plans to correct these issues, it is time to look for a new career. Here are some things you need to do while in the process of changing jobs.
1. Make sure you have enough ‘juice’ to last you for at least 6 months. Being in the unemployment pool is costly. There are necessary expenses you still need to pay even while you’re unemployed; rent, car loan, utilities bills, and others. Having enough savings will help you live through this while you are in this phase. You can also move back to your parents’ house to cut some of these expenses. You may lessen lavish activities like parties, outings, and dine outs to further cut costs and save money. You can do these things again once you are back on track. Remember, it is possible to be unemployed without being broke.
2. Do freelance and part-time jobs. We all know that savings, in worst case scenarios, may deplete over time, especially if you are having difficulties finding a job. Working freelance or part-time has its own benefits. Most important is that it can help you earn money to spend while unemployed. Working several jobs can also make your resume look promising as ever as these experiences can be included in your CV. Employers will realize that you haven’t wasted your time sitting in the house or partying with friends.
3. Look for activities that would keep you pre-occupied. Being unemployed can be really boring. Waiting for calls from employers or even results of your applications feels like forever. You have plenty of time now to do what you couldn’t do when you had a job. Read books, volunteer in NGOs, stroll in the park, ride that bike, learn how to cook, eat with your parents, write a blog, host a slumber party with friends. These are important social activities we usually miss during our employment days. Now that we have free time, make sure you do these. These activities also make your mind and body healthy.
4. Constantly look for a job. The reason why you resigned is to find a better job and a better employer. You can take a break for 2-3 months to re-align your plans and give yourself some rest. While doing this, you should check job postings regularly, online and print ads. It usually takes at least a month or two before employers contact you for an interview. Sending that resume to more prospect employers will give you higher chances of landing on a new job.
Swimming in the unemployment pool is a big decision on which you have to be prepared. Having a concrete plan like this will help you go through this major phase in your life. Remember, being prepared is always the key.