Don’t stop living because you are in between jobs- by Adebisi Blaque

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Are you out of job and grappling with mental health and despair. This short post may provide guidance and direction. 

Dear Reader,

It’s great to connect with you once again.

I feel an urgent need to write about people who are languishing as a result of being in between jobs.

Cassandra is a friend of mine . She no longer has her bank manager job and has been exhibiting some unusual behaviour, like not picking calls, being withdrawn, and shunning social interactions. A once bubbling Cassandra now finds it difficult to keep up with conversations.

Conversation with her now is usually characterized by intermittent silence mostly from her end. She certainly hasn’t been the same after leaving paid employment.

Cassandra’s situation is quite common. When you are not in paid employment there’s the tendency to be withdrawn from normal social activities and wallow in man-made self misery. While finances may not remain the same, it’s not an excuse for the anti-social behaviour or lack of drive. You are still the same if you believe so.

The most important player in your life is you. Don’t languish after you leave paid employment.

The employment situation globally has been topsy turvy. People are out of jobs for various reasons; layoffs, redundancy, downsizing, relocation, unemployment, lack of job satisfaction etc. While some of these reasons seem beyond personal control, reasons such as lack of job satisfaction are somewhat a matter of choice, afterall they say “happiness is a choice”.

Here are some tips you may find useful while you are not in employment:

1. Stay Positive and Connected
You may not be employed but you can make sure you are not jobless. It’s ok when our friends and family who live abroad tell us they are in between jobs. Why? Back home we perceive being out of job as something like a death blow. You know what?

It’s a stereotype!

I would agree with you that your bills need to be paid from a steady source of income and you need to be engaged in a financially rewarding activity. Let’s try staying positive. Your job is just one source of income, you may not have that source of income but there are other sources of income so look for another source of income be it another paid employment or self employment.

2. Stay Engaged
You need to stay engaged. Don’t shut out your friends, colleagues and family or altogether shut down. Please be seen doing something. You have the social media handles to showcase you and what you do. Everyone loves progress, you being out of job should not limit your progress. You are more likely to be recommended for another job when you are seen making progress. Pick your calls, you never know opportunities people might like to recommend or connect you with.

3. Update your CV
There’s no better time to update your CV than now when you have time at your disposal. Take trainings, attend workshops, seminars and conferences. There are free training sessions, seminars etc. If you can afford paid trainings please go for it but try not to embark on the ones with high cost implications because you need to be prudent, the usual income is not there.
This may also be the time to embark on that higher level education. Get a masters or MBA or doctorate. No knowledge is lost. You can’t afford to be stale.

4. Discover your latent talents
Take the time to learn what interests you; tailoring, farming, gardening, writing, coding, photography, designing etc. We have so many videos that teach crafts on YouTube. In acquiring a skill you can discover talents you never knew you had or which have not been in use. A new skill can take you to the next level.

5. Follow Your Passion
Yes, this is the time to follow your passion. Businesses sometimes develop from one’s passion. You may go from being a tech expert to a techpreneur, from a business development executive to an entrepreneur, from a corporate communications expert to a writer, from an investment manager to a financial advisor to startups etc. The list is actually endless and there are lots of success stories around.
Don’t lose steam or self confidence, keep at it and all the best!

Adebisi Blaque writes from Lagos and has only recently re-discovered her passion for writing.

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15 thoughts on “Don’t stop living because you are in between jobs- by Adebisi Blaque”

  1. This piece is quite apt in this situation we found ourselves. People are dealing with lots of conditions silently not knowing what to do or where to go and as such exhibiting mental health issues without recognizing it. We really need to be our brothers keeper by checking on family and friends to know how they are doing.

  2. This will surely help somebody currently in this place.
    I want to also add that you can volunteer your services free of charge. It will keep you sharp and help you become more proficient. Need I to add that, when there’s an opportunity for employment in the field and place you’re volunteering, you’ll naturally be the first port of call. Additionally, look outwards. By this, I mean, look beyond your immediate environment to seek remote employment from other countries. Thankfully, the internet is here to help us and as we would say locally, “Google is your friend.”

  3. Tosin Elizabeth Okeowo

    Loosing a job can be a such a terrible feeling and having to resign from a job you truly love is another unpleasant experience.

  4. This is an interesting read. Insightful with lessons learnt and clearly teaching us that our jobs shouldn’t define us.

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