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Archive for the ‘keeping motivated after job loss’ Category

Happy New Year!

Lovely Galley readers, I missed you while I was away, but I can’t deny that I enjoyed not being plugged in constantly. I needed a break from searching and reading and though I feel guilty about it, I’m trying not to.

Many folks say they don’t make New Year’s resolutions because they don’t keep them. Well, I’m making some that I can keep. Don’t make resolutions so outlandish you could never reach them, but at the same time, there is nothing wrong with shooting for the moon. As the poster in my sixth grade classroom said, “even if you miss, you will land among the stars.”

New Year’s Resolutions for those looking for a job and freelancers (I’m doing these too!):

1) Be happy and stop feeling guilty. Be yourself, even if you were laid off. Smile, watch your favorite shows, make your favorite dinner; don’t think every waking moment needs to be devoted to your job search. All work and no play is no good, even if your work is not bringing a paycheck home every two weeks. Do not feel guilty about enjoying yourself, this will not only make you miserable, but it can hinder your job search as you become more and more resentful of your situation.

2) Stay motivated. The position you applied for has been cut, and three of your clients can’t afford you right now. It’s rough and it’s not pleasant, but you can’t let it keep you down. Wallowing and pitying yourself will get you no where. Fall and get back up as many times as it takes. Talk to those around you, visit message boards and vent in your journal when you need to get all that disappointment out. It is normal to be upset, but you still can’t let it get the best of you.

3) Do more for your search. Sending out a pitch letter every two weeks and occasionally leaving your house to go to a networking event is only putting in 50% effort. If you want to see real results, you need to get out there. Tweet 10 times a day on Twitter, attend every free webinar in your field, go to networking events and events that could be networking events (like a reading from a book that was just published about your field—the author and the participants are all potential connections).

4) Use social networks to their fullest. Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn can bring you new fans and friends, but they can also land you new assignments and score you full-time gigs. Take the time to learn what makes these platforms tick. Get started here:

8 Ways Twitter Can Build Your Freelance Business

10 Traits of Highly Effective Twitter Users

10 Ways to Use LinkedIn

This wont be the last time we talk about these resolutions. I’m going to keep you posted on how I am doing with them every few months, or if something comes up (like me falling off the wagon or reaching a new audience, whatever comes first). I want you to do the same. You don’t have to broadcast it to the world, but every month, revisit your resolutions and give yourself your own progress report.

Here’s to a fabulous 2009! (It can’t be worse than 2008, right??)

Till tomorrow,
C

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roller coasterSince I was a little too upset to blog directly after the lay off, I didn’t get to document the emotional roller coaster I was on. Sometimes (even six weeks after) that crazy bunch of emotions lets me on the ride again, free of charge. Today, I took a few rides.

Most of the time I feel energized, fueled with passion and ready to get my hands dirty in a whole bunch of tasks at once—learning the ins and outs of SEO, participating in a webinar on personal branding and compiling a list of indoor activities for kids, all in one day. And I’m totally cool with that and look forward to it, but sometimes I lose a little motivation, usually after some job news. Today’s news was only half bad, but still left me feeling discouraged.

I understand I’m not the only one feeling this way, so I wanted to share where I turn for a little career pick-me-up.

1- Your first job acceptance package. Mine is still in my inbox and though it makes me a bit sad, it reminds me that if I did it once, I can do it again.
2- Cards from co-workers. Almost everyplace I’ve worked or interned has given me a card at some point. A birthday, my last day, get well soon, etc. I keep all the cards along with others from friends and family in a pretty memory box, and read their positive messages: “You have such a can-do attitude,” “We are going to miss your smile” and “You are so intelligent and willing, it keeps us all motivated.” Those are nice statements to revisit when you’re down in the dumps about your career.
3- Read about how others are dealing with the economy. So many people are frustrated and struggling right now and many are willing to share—their stories are helpful in getting you through days like this. Don’t just think standard inspirational stories; I found this one today about living in a world of abundance and it really resonated with me.
4- Step away from your computer. Sometimes you just need to clear your head, stop reading articles (I know this contradicts yesterday’s post) and get some fresh air. Look for a job and work on your freelance assignments later, and take an hour walk to relax. Simply getting away from your home office can be very liberating and effective.
5-After your break, jump right back into it. Don’t take too much time away from your work either. You don’t want to lose your motivation or get tangled in your own disappointment. Nothing is going to fall in your lap (except maybe a winning lotto ticket. Hey, you never know.), so you still have to make things happen. I find that after I clear my head, the best way to get geared up again is to dive right back in.

Till tomorrow,
C

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This is my first post using mobile WordPress! Today was a bit hectic (hence the mobile post from the ferry on my SECOND trip into Manhattan), so I can’t stay long, but must stick to the vow.

My pal Raia (first name Nicole) gave me a ride into the city this morning for my early meeting and to pick up her otoscope case (she’s a crazy ear doctorate student and that’s the tool docs use to check out your ear). I was supposed to ready at 6:30, but instead, that is when I woke up to vibrations from several text messages. She even threw pennies at my window to try to wake me up! I got dressed in 15 minutes after I read the “today is gridlock alert!!!” message.

Not too much traffic on the way in, had a great meeting, Raia couldn’t score her ear tool case though, so it was kind of an early waste of time for her. We went food shopping for some last minute Thanksgiving necessities and surprisingly it wasn’t a zoo.

When I got home, I went over health insurance with Dad—it’s a bit of a headache and an administrative nightmare when you are unemployed. I’m going to post about that this week and explain all your options, especially if you are in NY.

Now we are on our way back into Manhattan (via public transportation this time) to meet my boyfriend Andrew and see the Macy’s Parade Balloon Inflation. Promise to post some photos.

The moral of today’s story is: I really need to get on a bit of a better schedule. Getting up 6:30, which should have been 5:45, was a bit too painful.

Oh, more freelance opportunities came in today! And go out and party kids, it’s Thanksgiving eve.

Till tomorrow (yup, I’m posting even though it’s a holiday),
C

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