Career blues after 35 is more common than we would like to accept. People who cross this age often ponder about their career options in a competitive environment, feeling overwhelmed by the flawed notion that they will not be able to get another and better opportunity to showcase their abilities, talent, and expertise. This can lead to a build-up of anxiety, stress, and even depression. Thankfully, you can improve your mental health and overcome career blues after 35 using the following tips:
Break Your Job Finding Goals in Smaller Tasks
Getting a job after 35 may often be daunting and intimidating in equal measure. This can result in you putting off your job search. Rather than getting yourself into a tangle and unproductive rut, it is a good idea to break your job finding goals into smaller tasks that you can accomplish easily. This will give you a sense of achievement, which, in turn, will motivate you to strive further.
For instance, identify a specific website one day and look for a certain number of jobs that you can apply to. The next day, make your CV and cover letter for each of those shortlisted jobs. By setting small goals that you can accomplish in a short span of time, you will be able to a step closer to your ultimate professional goal. As a result, you will be happier and feel more productive. It goes without saying that these emotions have a hugely positive effect on your mental health.
Set Your Own Reward and Punishment System
Whether you have a project to complete at work or are looking to find a new job, you stand a better chance of making your work more enjoyable by focusing on small and achievable. However, as a motivational tool, devise a reward and punish system.
Each time you accomplish one of the goals for the day, reward yourself generously. This can be going to a movie with a friend, dining out or enjoying a drink with your partner. In case you fail to attain that goal, punish yourself by depriving yourself of your favorite dessert or not watching your favorite TV program such as The Good Wife, 24, or The Walking Dead. The key is to set rewards that matter and are enticing enough to genuinely motivate you.
If you constantly focus on negative things, you will continue to stay depressed, stressed out, and upset with everything about your work and life. So, the first step is to stay away from negative thoughts and self-talk. Instead turn to positive affirmations to maintain a positive thought process and prevent yourself from falling into a rut.
You can write your positive thoughts down and each time you think you are slipping into negativity, take out your journal and read those empowering thoughts. It will help you stay positive and prevent you from slipping into depression or anxiety.
Build a Strong Support Network
When you are encountering career blues after 35, it is very easy to shun everyone and wallow in self-pity. This will have an adverse effect on your physical and mental health.
So, it is important you build a strong support network comprising of people who care about you. Look to include your parents, close friends, mentors, partners, spouses, and other relatives into this network and allow them to keep you motivated about your work. If you don’t have the network you want, join a support group to meet peers who will cheer you up and help you see the silver lining on every cloud.
Being surrounded by positive people emanating positive energy will do your mental health a lot of good. It will ensure that you are constantly motivated to perform better at work or keep persevering to find that perfect job. Small failures and obstacles will no longer stress you out. If they do, you know you can always talk to someone from your support group and get it off your chest.
Learn to Meditate
Career blues after 35 can be stressful and make you ill-tempered. Anger is your greatest enemy and will wreak havoc on your mental health. So each time you feel stressed, learn to meditate to calm yourself down and look at things with a relaxed perspective. When you do this, even the worst things at work will not look so bad.
Deep breathing exercises coupled with simple meditation techniques will relax your mind and body. You will feel more energized to pursue your daily goals and when you accomplish them, it will evoke a sense of achievement.
Just remember things are not as bad as they seem and if you have taken steps in the right direction, you will continue to have a job that you are passionate about. This is something that should cheer you up and alleviate your anxiety and stress.