The Cure for the Jobless Winter Blues

If I were a cover band singer in an old-timey country music bar, I’d take this moment to dedicate a slow tune to the unemployed, or the recently-not-promoted. If you’re feeling beat down by the system or disillusioned about your workplace, this one’s for you.

Winter is here, the weather is colder and going outside for a sunshine pick-me-up just isn’t appealing when it’s twelve degrees below freezing. It’s a lot easier to mope around your house or apartment, especially when you don’t have to be at work because—awkward pause—you don’t have a job to go to. These are unpredictable and confusing times, and it is a true challenge to figure it all out. Sometimes it feels like you don’t have control over your future, or that you’re on a streak of bad luck. While I’m here to remind you that this is a phase that will pass, I won’t pretend it isn’t difficult. I’ve been there, and so have many, many other members of your community. It’s part of the Canadian lifestyle to have ups and downs, proverbial balmy summers and freezing winters of careerdom. So don’t be tempted by your blues to sulk into a hazy afternoon of video games, or lie in bed feeling like a failure. The only way to get out of a rut is to rise above it, and a little work best online casino will give you the pleasure of peace and lightness for a lifetime.

Meditation is an activity I embraced a few years ago after much resistance. I can barely go one minute without a thought popping into my mind, but I have still greatly benefitted from meditation. The basic principle is something everyone can appreciate: allow peace to reveal itself by quieting your mind.

The next time you feel hopelessly jobless, or frustrated that a potential employee has yet to contact you about that job you’d be perfect for, stop what you’re doing. Close your computer and find a comfortable place to sit where you aren’t likely to fall asleep. Sit and take a few deep, measured breaths. You can close your eyes, or pick a spot on the floor or wall to stare at that won’t distract you. Be calm. Keep breathing slow, measured breaths. Easy, right? That’s because that was the easy part.

The goal of meditation, at least in a North American sense, is to clear your mind from the messy tangles of inner dialogue and negative thought patterns. When you don’t have a job or are unhappy at your current position, negativity hooks its little barbs into the way you think, feel and predict your next action. When we close our eyes to meditate, the aim is to empty the mind of inner dialogue. As Dan Ackroyd proved in Ghostbusters, it’s a real challenge to think of nothing. In order to avoid these recurring, complex thoughts (your version of the StayPuft Marshmallow Man), watch your breath. Watch the air rush into your nose, pause, and rush out again. Repeat. Notice that the natural sound of your breath is just like waves rolling onto the seashore, and then rolling back again. Good. Repeat.

If your thoughts begin to wander—thinking about what’s for lunch or who you should have emailed—that’s okay. Gently let the thoughts pass by and let your focus return to breathing. If you feel too distracted, try counting the rhythm of your breathing—a simple pattern can be enough to distract your brain from more complex thoughts. Even if you can only manage to clear your mind for a few minutes, you’ve already come a long way from giving in to negativity.

Some things in life we can’t help, like thousands of local applicants competing for a single position. Stay focused on what you can improve—I can’t think of a better place to start than inside your brilliant mind.

Allison Whalen

Allison is a freelance writer and multimedia artist based in Chelsea, Quebec. Since completing her MA at Carleton University, she has focused on professional and creative projects that aim to provide both efficiency and joy.

Twitter: @EclecticRoyale

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>