Job transitions, whether voluntary or involuntary, can add a lot of stress to your life if you aren’t prepared for what you’re going to face. You’ll be encountering a whole new set of people and responsibilities as you find a new job and transition into the position. Your goal should be not only to survive, but to thrive by implementing healthy habits.
Make a budget right away
You don’t want to drain your life savings the second you transition out of your job, so your first order of business is to create a new budget. If you’re drawing unemployment while you look for a new job, that will help, but you may also need to dip into your emergency savings account as well. Even if you’re transitioning right away into another job, you should still make a budget based on that new income and any changes in your expenses that result from the job change.
Network to find new job connections
If you’re not naturally an extroverted people person, you’ll need to become one for a while as you look for a new job and get connected. Be ready to talk to anyone and everyone about who you are, what your background is, and what you’re looking for in a job. Once you’re employed, focus on meeting people, figuring out who the social leaders are, and connecting appropriately.
Maintain a health insurance policy
Although it would be nice if your health always cooperated during job transitions, the truth is that health problems can pop up anytime, especially if you’re under stress. Keep yourself insured between jobs and while you’re waiting for benefits to kick in on your new job. If COBRA is too expensive, you can get short term medical insurance to cover you and your family if they need it.
Consider relocating for more opportunities
If you’ve been looking for work for a while and haven’t found anything, it may be because there’s not much available for you in your area. Don’t rule out moving to take a job. Job growth occurs regionally, and you may be better off looking in another part of the country where companies are actually hiring in your field. Some of the states with the highest rates of job growth include Utah, Nevada, Hawaii, South Carolina, and Colorado.
Keep enjoying your time with family and friends
Transitioning from one job to another shouldn’t be all work and no play. Take the time to relax and participate in the activities you enjoy with the people you enjoy. Focus on casual get-togethers so you won’t have to spend money going out. But if you’re married or seeing someone special, go on a date every once in a while, too. You’ll need to communicate with your significant other and set realistic expectations for your relationship so it continues to thrive during the transition.
Most people go through several career changes during their lifetime, so even if you’re going through a major shift in employment, know that you’re not alone. During this time, focus on taking care of yourself and being intentional about your activities. And don’t forget to relish the change from the daily grind, because you’ll probably find you miss that freedom when the job transition is completed!
Article by Matt Herdon
Matt Herndon is a writer and great Twitter friend, @Just_Matt_. He's a dad and husband who loves to write about almost anything, esp. leadership development and family, but won't write about cats or politics.
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