Did you see the numbers published last week? The Department of Labor reported that ANOTHER 6.6M unemployment claims were filed….in just one week! That brings the total claims filed between March 15 and April 4 to 16.8M!

L = Leave the Past Job Behind. This is certainly more difficult if you worked there a long time, or didn’t see it coming. I can appreciate that. However, dwelling on what was, what should’ve been and what could’ve been isn’t going to serve you as you move forward. If needed, take a couple of weeks (or more) to process what happened and work through some of the negative emotions you’re feeling. If you don’t, the next recruiters/employers you encounter will see them and run!

A = Assess Your Skills. When you think about starting a job search, consider what skills you have to offer an employer. Employers hire based on what you can offer them, and then they consider how the opportunity could benefit you. Next, consider what skills you want to use in your next opportunity. Just because you’re good at doing financial analysis doesn’t mean it’s what you want to do going forward. Be clear with yourself about what you want. This will help you avoid making bad job choices.

I = Invest in Yourself. By investing in yourself right now, you can become more marketable as you begin your search. And, yes, career coaching could be one of the ways to invest in yourself. If you need to find a job and don’t know good techniques/processes/approaches to do this, investing in yourself with career coaching can save you time, money (in longer-term lack of income) and effort. It can also help you to feel more empowered and equipped for your search.

D = Don’t Become Defeated. Getting laid off can be tough. Not finding a job and receiving rejection after rejection from employers can be devastating! However, there are numerous reasons why you may not hear from an employer and it quite possibly may be for reasons other than you’re not qualified. If you allow yourself to think defeating thoughts, game over! You must find ways to encourage yourself and connect with people who will encourage you. As the African proverb says, “If there’s no enemy inside, the enemy outside can do you no harm.”

O = Open Your Mind. “The mind is like a parachute. It works much better when it’s open.” Is this a great time for you to FINALLY explore new career options like you’ve been wanting to do for years? Could this be the time to try something new – I don’t know, but do you?

None of us want to do work we feel is not aligned with where we see ourselves in our career, but is your money tight? Do you need to earn extra dollars to keep the lights on and food in the frig? Do you desperately need some human contact and structure right now? If so, why not take on a temporary job to get you over the hump? It could end up being the blessing you need.

Several months ago, I was approached about a contract assignment to do outplacement career coaching. Of course, my pride wanted me to say, “Thanks, but no thanks.” However, after carefully considering it, I realized it was a GREAT opportunity, and merely an addition to what I was already doing! Right now, while my business is soft, let’s just say this outplacement coaching is coming in handy! Real talk people.
Ready to apply? Here’s a lists of 17 companies hiring right now.
F = Face Your Fears. For most people who are laid off, fear always shows up. If you pretend it’s not there, it will remain longer. The best thing to do is acknowledge the fear, but don’t give it much life in your life. Fear can be debilitating, which can stall your effectiveness in moving forward. Acknowledge it, then take steps to shut it up: 

By countering the thoughts with positive actions, you’ll minimize fear’s place in your circumstances.
F = Focus on Your Job Search. Are there times when the sun, moon and stars are aligned and a great job appears out of nowhere? Of course! Are these times the norm? Of course not! I wish they were, but that’s just not the case most of the time. Therefore, your job search is going to require time and effort. Make a commitment TO YOURSELF to allocate at least 20 hours per week to your search and be diligent with your efforts. You’ll be glad you did.
While being laid off can definitely be a big blow, it’s not fatal. You can survive it and thrive again. You WILL survive it and thrive again.
Keep the faith!