“Recapturing Lost Confidence” by Dr. John Manni, Psychologist
September 21, 2011 by John Manni & Doug Barton
With so few jobs available, it’s not surprising when clients tell me they’re losing their confidence. If you’re one of those people, it’s important to examine yourself closely. Reflect on what you are telling yourself. Too often ourself-talk is negative. We walk around putting ourselves down with statements like “I guess I don’t have what it takes to get a job anymore,” or “If I had only started looking before the layoff I’d have been okay.” Frankly, self-talk that includes “would have, could have, should have “statements lead nowhere. What you need to do is rewrite those negative scripts.
Begin by recalling just how effective you were at your previous jobs. Take stock of your talents. Think of your successes. Remember all the good things that were said in your reviews.. How about all the positive feedback from supervisors and co-workers? What about all the problems you solved? All of those things are still true!
I also realize the reality that it may take months to get another job, and as time passes, your self-confidence begins to wane. One way to reinvigorate your confidence is to demonstrate competence in your daily actions. Look around your house or apartment and pick a job like waxing your car, weeding a garden, fixing a leaky faucet, or painting some trim. When you’re finished, step back and enjoy a sense of satisfaction with a job well done. Try to remember that action is a good way to jump-start motivation. Build you self-confidence one small step at a time by rediscovering your sense of mastery.
Time and again in this blog I have emphasized the role thinking plays in your emotions and actions. If you see your present state of unemployment as your personal failure, you need a reality check. Unfortunately, you are caught up in the worst recession since the great depression. You ended up without a job because of forces far beyond your control. rewrite the script you keep playing in your mind with a more realistic assessment such as, “These are tough times which I will survive because I am a competent person with skills and talents that have served me and previous employers well.” Keep that thought in mind as you stick to your search for a new job and it will help in keeping you emotionally and physically healthy.