Job Search in the time of Pandemic: Resilience and Patience
Before I begin, let me make it clear: every death is a tragedy and it is very difficult for an engineer like me to discuss this topic.
“When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” ~Joseph P. Kennedy
Two things are the most important for everyone right now: resilience and patience. Things will get better. Stay put and stay strong until then.
Berlin Wall - Germany
It is quite a challenging time for 2020 graduates. Several companies have frozen their hiring, many have fired a whole lot, several have canceled internships, some postponed interviews, few are moving to video/telephonic interviews and some are still figuring out their plan. Home-quarantine, COVID-19 news, social media are already psychologically draining and amidst all this finding a job adds even more complexities.
As someone who is living through it, I want to share what has been helping me out. I hope to inspire my audience to see this as a challenge, garner patience and creativity to look for their silver lining.
It makes me very uncomfortable to talk about job search and career right now. The utmost priority is public health which I barely contribute to. My respect goes out to every doctor, nurse, paramedic, hospital, lab technician, clinician, virologist, support staff, volunteer, organization and anyone else who is working on the frontlines to save others’ lives.
To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance ~Oscar Wilde
Adhere to #DotheFive
First and foremost take care of yourself and loved ones.
The only takeaway is your safety, physical and mental health. However, mental health issues could be lurking when you are facing these uncertainties in the job market, feel frustrated by the news while at the same time getting rejections and slow or no response at all.
To help through this complicated situation, you need to be optimistic and resilient. You need to build a good daily routine, derive joy from your activities that love to do and create an emotional capacity to process feelings and get hold of yourself.
I have few recommendations which include self-care strategies, mental frameworks, stay-at-home activities and community recommendations:
Most importantly, before you begin with your job search, eat healthy, sleep well, exercise regularly, get connected with your friends and family, do your favorite activities and remain optimistic. All this might sound a cliche and easier said than done as it will sometimes become difficult to maintain your schedule while your confined at your home and forget to get frustrated while finding a job. Regularly check-in with yourself and reflect on whether you are leading a healthy life at the moment.
Practice social distancing. Follow the public safety announcements/guidelines at all times.
If you are going out to get essentials or to visit a doctor, maintain distance at all times, sanitize your hands after touching surfaces like door handles etc. and try to cover your face with a mask.
Focus on the broader context, and not just the situation at hand.
In the meantime, learn something. 99 % of learning will have to be online which many won’t be a fan of, but do it anyway. Hone your skills and gain new ones.
Resilience and Patience
Try assigning probabilities for various outcomes and avoid binary thinking.
Meditate. Relax and breathe. Stay curious and be patient.
Have hope, things will change. When all this is over, it will only make you stronger. Remember that.
Duomo Milano - Milan Cathedral, Italy
View from RWTH Aachen Super C, Germany
Checkpoint Charlie, Berlin, Germany
Lousberg, Aachen, Germany
Twin Towers, Düsseldorf, Germany
All photos, except the Google PSA, were shot by the author Pulkit Batra on: Google Pixel and Sony Digi-Cam.
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