Waiting for change? Or waiting because a change has happened and you can’t yet see your next step?
I left my first job due to burn-out and had a few months of waiting before my next step became clear. That waiting time was hard as I wasn’t sure how I was going to make ends meet. In addition, the circumstances around my burn-out had shattered my confidence in my employability. The waiting was part of my recovery.
Here are some things that helped me through this time.
Take care of yourself.
Eating and sleeping are often negatively affected when under stress. Resist the urge to binge on junk food or to stop eating altogether. Have regular meals, regular bed-times. Stay well-hydrated. Get some sun! Try to engage daily in some form of physical activity. If you have the opportunity to spend time in nature, take it.
Create a routine.
Keep a pattern to your days and weeks that gives you some sense of regularity. As much as possible, hold on to household routines that were in place before the waiting started, or create new ones. Schedule in regular things to do and people to connect with face-to-face. If you’re looking for work, make regular time to job-hunt, to prepare applications, and to follow-up on submissions. Plan at least one task to accomplish every day and track these accomplishments.
Connect with people.
Resist the urge to hide away from everyone. I was touched by the kindness and generosity of family and friends who saw the challenges I faced and offered support and assistance in ways big and small. Knowing that people were around made the waiting bearable and helped restore my confidence in myself and in the world around me. However, I had to make the effort to reach out to others too. You never know who is holding the key to your next step!
Reflect on your experience.
One of the biggest gifts in the waiting is time and space to look at who you are, what has happened, where you are and where you would like to be. Daily life can be too fast-paced for reflection. The waiting gives you the chance to assess, explore options, dream a little and make different decisions.
Get advice and support.
Recognise that you don’t know what you don’t know. Talk to people informally or in professional settings about the things that are keeping you stuck and see what they have to say. Take the opportunity to learn new skills or reconnect with old ones. Expand your interests. Read widely. Educate yourself.
Waiting doesn’t have to be a negative experience. Treat this time as the beginning of opportunity.
Are you in a place of waiting for something to happen? Check in with Cynosure Support Services to see how we can help you make the most of it.