Fighting Job Search Depression

It is common to feel depressed or even hopeless, during a job hunt that runs longer than you would like. We’ve all been there. The recurring, “Will I ever GET HIRED?” seems to be the common thought in our minds. So, here are some tips to keep up your spirits when you are feeling low.

1. A job hunt is easily a full-time job. Don’t make it more than that. Put in your time job-hunting for the right Healthcare IT job, then be sure to take some time for yourself.

Don’t give yourself a hard time for taking time off. If you don’t take down-time, the stress will wear away at your mental health, leaving you in no shape for interviews. When I was laid off, I learned how to cross-stitch. It always seemed hard (on the eyes), but interesting, and since I am craft-challenged, I could handle the easy patterns. I loved it and even though I wasn’t getting paid for it, I felt like I was doing something with my time when I wasn’t job searching.

2. No stewing over your termination from your last job. Layoffs are ongoing, and these days, you haven’t had much of a career if you haven’t been laid off at least once.

Take whatever lessons you can from your last position, looking for areas of improvement, and then move on. Period. You are human, you make mistakes, just like everyone else. Forgive yourself for any mistakes, then work on them.

(And your ex-boss? She’s human, too.)

3. If you’re really stuck in a rut, take some time to do work around the house that you’d never had time to get around to. Schedule those doctor appointments that you’ve been missing due to your busy schedule. Clean out your basement or garage. Think of this as an unplanned leave of absence, and see the benefit in the time that you’ve been given.

4. Make up a new plan of attack. Plans can be invigorating, and with the time that you’ve had to reflect, you may come upon new plans of attack. Now may be a great time to head your career in a new direction. With your last job, you gained experience that you didn’t have previously.

Really search the informatics market and see what’s out there. Look for areas of growth and opportunity, and really try hard to see your skills and abilities as freshly as if you’d never seen them before. Helathcare IT is so hot right now, it won’t be hard to do.

5. Take a class, read a book, expand skills that will aid you in your Healthcare IT job search. Take the time to get a certification if it’s likely to pay off.

6.When the stress is overwhelming, take a mental health day, and just soak in the tub with a good book and some Merlot. Go for a walk. Rediscover the world as it is when you aren’t wearing stress blinders. I started walking every day. It made me get up and out every day, gave me something to look forward to.

7. Get out there and meet people. Join clubs, especially those associated with Healthcare IT  or other work interests, go to university lectures, business mixers. Even a hiking club might well provide you with the contact who gets you that next job. Remember, who you know is at least as important as your HCIT training. The main thing a boss is looking for is reliability, and they get that assurance from acquaintance, however slight or second-hand, with your character.

8. Don’t take it personally when you don’t get the job. It’s not a personal rejection, you just aren’t what they need today.

About the author


Erin Kennedy

Erin Kennedy, CPRW, CERW, BS/HR, is a Certified Professional Resume Writer/Career Consultant, and the President of Professional Resume Services. She is a nationally published writer and contributor of nine best-selling career books.


  • Erin,

    Great tips. I hear from Healthcare IT job seekers every day, and often hear discouragement in their voices. I especially like #3 – accomplishing something that’s been nagging at you, even if it’s not work related, can do wonders for your morale. Thanks for the insights!


  • When you are down it sends a message to everyone you come in contact with. Your attitude impacts your altitude EVERY SINGLE TIME. A positive attitude is the one key attribute that often sets one candidate apart from another. Keep positive and understand that looking for a job IS a full time job. Period. Keep focused, stay upbeat have a real plan every day – and you will come out on TOP. Every time!

  • This just was spread around again. So, I thought I would give you some feedback. It’s great advice for relatively newly layed off people. However, the value and impact may change over time. I’ve been unemployed a long time. They call me a 99er now and have for most of the last year.

    Wine, fixing the house and going to a Doctor are nice if you have the money. I spend all the money I can getting out and meeting people. They like me! I’m perky, optimistic but overqualified or simply not the right person.

    I’ve modified my plans a number of times now. Nothing has worked yet but I keep smiling and trying. Now, if you have any advice for those of us about out of resources and close to homelessness, let me know! I’m open to hearing any ideas.

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