Surviving Unemployment: Job Search Closed on December 25th.

When I was growing up in the late 50s and early 60s, my father’s family would gather December 25 to celebrate Christmas.    My uncle who didn’t have children yet played Santa Claus for his eager nieces and nephews.  While Santa was in the living room giving gifts, we were told Uncle Walter was not there because he was out buying cigarettes.  Little did we know at the time that all the stores were closed.    Actually, nothing was open.  Just like today, most of the retailers, businesses and professionals are taking a holiday.   This gives you the day off from job searching, too.
Take time off to enjoy family and friends.  Reflect on the meaning of the day.  Relax and renew.  Enjoy the delicious food everyone has prepared and shared with the rest.   Look at the joy in the faces of children as they open present after present.  Or the delight a toddler takes in the wrapping paper and boxes.  Relish the generations that have gathered once again.  Listen to the same stories that are retold time and time again as if they were fresh and new.  They are your legacy.
Yes, there will be trying times today, and you will need patience; for the children wired up from the sugar in the candy and cookies they have been eating all day; for the friend or relative who has just a drop too much of Christmas cheer; for the gift, you received that doesn’t fit or make any sense; and for listening to unsolicited advice from yet other well-meaning source.    These too are what memories are made of.
However, most importantly because all of this you will be able to put off job searching for the day.  You can put to rest the resumes and cover letters, refrain from searching the big boards for open positions, and anxiously awaiting for the phone to ring with an interview or job offer.  The only thing you will want to continue is networking.  Nevertheless, today you can create relationships instead of leads; relationships that you can follow up on after the New Year and should definitely do so.  You can enjoy the friendship and conversation instead of trying to get a sense of whether this person can help you.
One day when the rest of the country is taking time off won’t make or break your job search.  In fact, it will help.  In order to recharge most batteries, they need to be not working when recharging.  That is what you should be doing.  Be fully in the moment today without the job search being on your mind.  Put it out of your mind and concentrate on the day.
Enjoy the day, because just like the stores handling returns, you will have to work on your job search on December 26th.

Arleen Bradley is a certified career coach and certified job loss recovery coach assisting client to go beyond job loss grief to land dream jobs.

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