Four Lessons to Keep Motivated Even When Unemployed
My daily grind used to be waking up at five in the morning, competing with early commuters, long office hours and quick meals in between. Five years of corporate life taught me to dress to impress, walk with confidence, talk assertively, lead meetings with grace, make decisions with haste. It was a hectic life and by October 2019, I chose to end all of it.
For two months, I was jobless. And surprisingly, I did not miss a single day of my previous life, did not wish that I was facing my laptop again or talking with clients non- stop. The two months of unemployment brought momentary bliss and within that time frame, I learned four valuable lessons that kept me highly motivated.
First, being unemployed is a window to discover something new.
The hubbub of office life can sometimes tear you away from hobbies and interests. I say sometimes because some people still find a way to accommodate hobbies and interests despite their work demands. But if you're someone whose routine goes like this even on weekends: work-eat -sleep, then removing the "work" part opens up new possibilities. For me, the "work" part was replaced by "write". Because of unemployment, I discovered content writing and it led me to writing portals, just like Hubpages.com.
Second, it is important to set goals everyday.
When you go jobless, it is very tempting to spend the rest of your days without a definite timetable or a plan. After all, there are no more deadlines to meet, no bosses to answer to and no emails to backread. Your 24 hours are solely yours and you can choose to spend the large chunk of it sleeping, eating or binge-watching or you can choose to tick-off those "to do" activities that you never got around to doing when you were still employed. Reconnecting with an old friend or school buddy daily is one such goal. And believe me, when you act on at least one goal a day, you'll never feel like an irritable couch potato afterward.
Third, learn to value the simplicity of life.
In my daily grind, I rarely get the chance to pause and observe. Two months of unemployment provide ample time to do just that. There is joy in walking without a rush while feeling the breath of air and the sun's rays on your face. There is joy in finding stillness amidst the noise while being aware of the different sounds. True listening is a notch above hearing and it can lead to deeper connection with the people around you and even with nature.
Fourth, you get the chance to cherish moments with your loved ones.
Let's admit it, being obsessed with work can create gaps in your relationship with family and friends. But once work is no longer around, you are forced to fill those gaps by spending more time and energy with them. More importantly, whether you are employed or not, those gaps should not have been created in the first place. So, make those moments matter. Be wholly present when you're with your family or your friends.
I was enlightened by other insights during those two months but the four lessons above more or less kept my motivation going. And here I am, ready to face the corporate world again with renewed vigor and enthusiasm. The two jobless months were not easy but it was worth it, in the end.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
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© 2020 Chris Martine