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So You Lost Your Job—How Can You Keep Yourself Busy?

Because of quarantine, many people are being laid-off or furloughed from their jobs. On top of worrying about bills and the stimulus funding, since we aren’t able to go…anywhere, you can have a hard time trying to find the inspiration to not just lay in bed all day playing Animal Crossing or binge-watch Tiger King (even if there is a new episode). Here are six ways for you to stay productive, creative, and inspired during the pandemic.

Create new contacts through networking.

Many of us are experiencing the same thing: being stuck at home, and unable to work. Even though it sucks, it does mean that we’re all online looking to connect with people. Take advantage of this and grow your network! Girlboss is an awesome networking platform where women can reach out to other women for input on blogs, internship and job opportunities, podcast interviews, and even just how to best caption a photo for Instagram. You can use tools like LinkedIn to connect with people more professionally, as well as any alumni platforms or groups that are online. 

Rearrange and cleanse your space.

We’ve been given a lot of free time, and since we’re spending all our time inside anyway, why not make the best of our space by re-doing it? Go through your closet and put some stuff up on Poshmark. Really clear off your desk so you can get organized. Tape some photos or art prints up on the wall to get in you in a good headspace. If your room is now your workspace, you might as well make it the best it can be.

Start a blog!

Starting a website or blog is a great way to not only provide evidence of your expertise in the area of work you’re looking for, but it also gives you a creative outlet to hone your skills. And the best part is you can make great ones for free. Places like WordPress and Wix offer awesome basic blogging and website platforms for free, and you can take as much time as you need designing it to be yours.

Take time to journal.

We’re all experiencing something new, something we don’t necessarily know how to deal with. And we’re all dealing with a certain amount of grief and trauma (no matter how small or large it is). It’s important to take the time to work through those feelings, and channel them into something else. A journal is a perfect place. Not only can this help you work out your feelings, but it can help you tap into your creative side and get you out of a rut.

Take advantage of all those virtual hangouts!

As much as it may seem cumbersome to sit by your computer at 5:30pm waiting to click on a Zoom invite, going to these virtual chat sessions/happy hours/events are a great way to feel like you’re still part of the world. SheFactor has been having virtual Squad Events each month featuring various speakers. Not only can you learn from the speakers at these events, but you can also chat with like-minded people, something we might all be missing. And you might even be able to win some goodies!

Read something.

As much as we like to convince ourselves it’s better to go-go-go, taking a mental break is healthy. Taking time amidst projects to sit down with a real book and read can be an amazing experience. Whether you start a virtual book club with your friends or just embark on the journey by yourself, getting lost in a good book is a valuable experience.

Losing your job right now can be scary. The silver lining is that now you have some time to evaluate how you want to proceed. Figure out your creative strengths, what keeps you inspired, and where you should go from here. Good luck, and remember to keep an eye on the job board!

Lulu Amirault

U Mass Amherst '19

I'm a grad of UMass Amherst with two degrees in Classics and Communications (a random combination, I know.) I'm into graphic design, photography, and attempting to bullet journal throughout the month. You can usually find me hanging with my cat Gatsby and listening to Harry Styles.
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