BACK TO WORK 50+

Take Time to Focus on Yourself and Stay Strong

Use these tips to help you to stay focused, and stay strong and positive all the way through the job search.

Woman exercising outdoors. Back to work at 50+ (Getty Images)

You’ve already noticed that looking for a new job is different from what it was 10 years ago. Job searching can take a lot out of you. Create a routine for yourself, so you don't burn out. One that allows you to conduct an effective job search and time to do things you enjoy.

Use these tips to help you to stay focused, strong and positive all the way through.

Keep yourself strong and positive

  • Create your support system. You can get through this tough time by reaching out to others. Avoid becoming isolated. If you are surrounded by positivity and encouragement, it becomes a lot easier to take on and conquer challenges. The people who are part of your support system will determine how well you build and maintain your confidence.

  • Be mindful of your health and think of ways to improve it. Try exercising with yoga, tai chi, biking, dance classes or swimming. Choose to eat better. Get plenty of sleep, at least seven hours. If you’re on a budget, remember that walking is free.

  • Make a habit of reading at a particular time of day. It’s a good way to escape and relax. This doesn’t cost you anything — try your local library, download free books onto your e-book reader or ask to borrow from friends.

  • Challenge yourself. Give yourself a challenge to learn or do something new. Take a training or computer course, or volunteer at an organization where you can have an exciting and different experience.

  • Work through anger and frustration so you can keep a positive attitude. Do what you need to do — talk to a friend, a counselor or clergy to process how you feel about losing a job and getting a new one.

 

Remain focused on your job search

  • Pick out a great outfit. You may be weeks away from an interview. This is a good time to look at your clothes and pick out a few up-to-date outfits that make your feel great. Is your wardrobe appropriate for the job you are searching for? Ask a fashion-conscious friend for advice, or look into programs that help people find interview outfits such as Dress for Success, and Goodwill’s Career Closet Goodwill Locator. Call ahead to find out what the program rules are.

  • Check out your credit report. The credit report is now more often included in the background check. Even the best potential employee can have had some credit issues. You can request your free annual credit report at AnnualCreditReport.com. This is the only official site to help consumers obtain their free credit report once every 12 months from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion otherwise there is a fee.

  • Create your job search schedule. This will help to keep you focused and on track. It takes time to customize résumés, search for job leads and fill out online applications. Decide in advance how much time each week you will focus on the job search and stick with it.

  • Create a professional email address and voicemail. The first impression you give an employer is the most important one and it may very well be an email or voicemail greeting. Create a professional email address and voicemail message.

  • Be a positive job candidate. If you send positive energy out, you are bound to get positive energy back. 

Today's job search involves being flexible and managing change. Change is not always easy. AARP has a new, free service called Life Reimagined for Work to help experienced workers like you find a new job. The Life Reimagined institute introduces you to six practices that guide you through change. Start where you are in your life, and see where the possibilities lead you. 

Related: Life Reimagined: How it works

We’ve given you 4 strategies to jump start your job search.  For a complete list of these strategies and more job search resources and information for 50+ jobseekers call 855-850-2525 and ask for a copy of ”7 Smart Strategies for 50+ Jobseekers.”  

Next: Find a job after age 50

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