We are at a precarious time that the media is filled with companies closing shop, downsizing or people just getting laid off for best reasons known to the employer of labour.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in a post by Pulse Nigeria, “3.3 million Nigerians suffered job losses in 9 months“. It added that “About 3.3 million Nigerians became unemployed between December 2017 and September 2018, deteriorating to 20.9 million”.
In Nigeria, the unemployment rate measures the number of people actively looking for a job as a percentage of the labour force.
Does unemployment or loss of job causes depression?
According to helpguide.org, it certainly does. Here’s what they have to say concerning it – “Grief is a natural response to loss, and that includes the loss of a job. Losing your job forces you to make rapid changes, which can leave you feeling upset, angry, depressed, or out of balance. Give yourself time to adjust. Grieving the loss of your job and adjusting to unemployment can take time”.
As volatile as the economy is today, it can be devastating for varying reasons when an individual lose a job or get fired or laid off. The effect of not being able to meet an essential financial need especially when it comes to family can have a depressing effect.
Psychologists have varying reasons why handling a job loss can be difficult and often leads to a depressing state of mind. However, there are definite steps you can apply if you’re going through that phase of a job loss at this time or having a depressing feeling that is affecting your mental health already.
10 symptoms that shows you are developing a major depressive disorder (MDD)
If you’re experiencing the following symptoms, there is a possibility that you might be developing a major depressive disorder (MDD):
- feelings of worthlessness, self-hate, or guilt
- feelings of helplessness or hopelessness
- fatigue or chronic lack of energy
- difficulty concentrating
- loss of interest in once-pleasurable activities such as a hobby or sex
- insomnia or hypersomnia (excessive sleeping)
- social isolation
- changes in appetite and corresponding weight gain or loss
- suicidal thoughts or behaviors
7 ways to handle depression after a job loss
We have taken advice, tips and helpful information from experts below for you to effectively handle your job loss right.
Take Time to Process Your Emotions
Losing a job is much like losing a loved one. You may feel angry, sad, guilty, and regretful as part of the grieving process. Give yourself time to go through that. Don’t jump into a job the next day. Wait at least a week before you get back out there. You need time to heal and recover so you can enter a new job with a clear head.
Revamp Your Resume
Don’t just update your resume – completely revamp it. Use this as an opportunity to create a new persona for yourself. Having a fresh, modern resume will make you look more appealing to potential employers, and it will make you feel confident with each application. There are plenty of free resume templates you can download online, and all you have to do is fill out the information.
Suggested Read: Depression – How To Deal With It
Don’t Get Discouraged in Your Job Hunt
Finding a job takes time. Finding a job you love takes even longer. Try not to get too discouraged during the search. Life has a way of working itself out, and stress doesn’t yield good results. Maintain a positive outlook, and you will be back to work in no time.
Look After Your Mental Health
If you find yourself suddenly and unceremoniously laid off, planning out your future job prospects is obviously a key step. “Figure out to how to rebuild, which may involve looking for work and taking a step back and looking at the big picture of what you can do—sometimes you have to have a couple irons in the fire”.
Set Small, Concrete Goals
Within your newly established routine, it’s helpful to have achievable daily and weekly goals. It can obviously feel overwhelming to have a big-picture plan to find a new job or change careers, but breaking that down into steps, like working on your resume, or networking with at least five people on LinkedIn can help.
Suggested Read: How To Deal Positively With Your Mental Health Illness
So your day could be broken into several blocks of time like reaching out to contacts, researching open positions and taking time to stay healthy by doing yoga at home. Each of those activities could become an action item checked off your daily to-do list.
Reevaluate Your Finances
The three big financial tasks you need to do after losing a job are to quickly evaluate your health benefit options, adjust your budget and try not to tap into your retirement account.
There’s the understandable immediate reaction of “freaking out and laying in bed,”, but that can keep you from making decisions on things you may need to do within the first 30 days of unemployment.
Suggested Read: Are You Depressed? Overcome It By Following These Tips
Reach Out to People.
It’s normal not to want to socialize after a job loss has bruised your ego, but since you never know where your next job opportunity might come from, being open with people about your employment situation is in your best interest.
“Don’t keep your job loss a secret,” says Schneiderman. “When people give you advice, take it—as long as it’s not idiotic or insane.”
Seeking out positive people and avoiding negative people is in your best interest.
With a job loss, sacrificing your health shouldn’t be an option. It is one thing you need to get you over this period and set you on course for your one. You should listen to what Psychology Today says; “For most people, a job loss is one event in an otherwise productive life. To see it as more than that for more than a brief period after being fired can sabotage your chances to discover new opportunities. You are much more than your work. If you use your passions to guide you and your strengths to begin a new journey, there’s no telling where the road may lead“.