Put the job hunt on pause for a minute, and do some self-care.
You've been working on your resume, updating it and rewriting it over and over until it's perfect. You've finally created a cover letter that you're proud of, though it still takes work to tweak it for each job for which you apply. You've spent hours and hours (or what feels like hours and hours) at your computer on every job search site possible, and you've applied for what feels like dozens of jobs in hopes that the recruiters will come knocking down your door to hire, or at least interview, you. And now, you're still in need of a job while in the middle of the waiting game. What now?
It's easy to fall down the rabbit hole and have job search stress and anxiety. But if you're worried you won't find a job, it's time to take a step back. How about taking some time to treat yourself for a job well done? today's fast-paced world, we often forget about the importance of self-care and reward. You've put in the hard work to land your dream job, and now it's time to turn it over to the Universe in hopes that you'll get a phone call for an interview. In the meantime, you can find ways to treat yourself on the cheap without breaking the bank.
Here are some ways to treat yourself and avoid job search stress and anxiety, on-the-cheap:
Get a manicure.
The price of a manicure will vary depending on supply and demand for your location, but in most places, you can get a manicure for under $20. My favorite part is the arm and hand massage that comes with it!
Get a pedicure.
Similar to manicures, the price for a pedicure will vary depending on supply and demand for your location. In Houston, for example, I can get a fabulous pedicure for $20. In small towns, like the one I grew up in, however, it might cost more like $30 because there isn't as much competition to drive the price down. Still, you can typically get a pedicure for under $35 in many locations. Again, my favorite part is the calf and foot massage that comes with it. Your toes will thank you!
Find a non professional networking event. If you're on the job hunt, then you already know that participating in and joining industry-focused networking events and groups is important. But why not look for some fun, non-professional networking events to attend? Do you have a favorite hobby or sport, for example? Look for a group that would be fun for you. Try Meetup.com to find fun networking events and groups in your area.
Get your groove on.
There's nothing like a dance class to have some fun, let off steam, and even get in some exercise. There's everything from classical dance and line dancing to jazz and ballroom dancing to choose from, depending on your preference. You can often find a weekly class package for around $50 per month, which breaks down to a little more than $12 a class. Not too bad.
Get an "introductory" massage.
Massages are great for relaxation and stress relief, to name just a few of the benefits. Many national chains, like Massage Envy, offer an introductory special for around $40 - $50 for your first massage. Local establishments often offer similar discounts, also.
Try a foot reflexology massage.
Foot reflexology massages have become rather popular in recent years. What's great about them is that you can walk into an establishment and purchase an hour long massage for around $30! The therapist will focus largely on your feet, but will massage the rest of your body a bit, too. The difference is, you remain fully clothed compare to the typical massage mentioned above. But you should definitely walk out feeling much better than you did when you walked in!
Get a makeover.
Many department store cosmetic counters will give you a makeover for free so you can test out their products. You can also opt to go to a salon that has a make-up artist on staff and schedule an appointment. This can be a great way to learn new trends, seasonal make-up, and more. On average, the cost will be around $50, though it can vary greatly depending on your location and the experience of the make-up artist.
Take a relaxing bath.
Unless you are utterly against taking a bath, you just can't go wrong by treating yourself to a relaxing bath with some candles and bubbles or essential oils like lavender and eucalyptus. Add some Epsom Salt for a more relaxing and detoxifying effect.
Use an essential oil air diffuser.
Essential oil diffusers have become very popular to helping avoid job search stress and anxiety, and I understand why. They are a great way to add scent to a room without the strong perfume smell that can bother many individuals. Essential oil diffusers can be purchased for $20 - $50, depending on the brand, and are easy to use. You simply place water in the diffuser, add your favorite essential oil, and then turn it on. It's a great treat to come home to after a long day.
Not everyone loves the outdoors, but if you're someone who does, search for local hiking trails in your area you have yet to try.
Take a mini road trip.
Is there somewhere you've been wanting to visit that's within a few hours of your home? If yes, then take a day trip to visit that location. Road trips can be a great way to clear your head or a great way to have some fun with friends. You can even take a picnic lunch to make sure the trip remains "on the cheap."
Go to your local farmer's market.
This isn't for everyone, but to avoid job search stress and anxiety, I like to stroll around my local farmer's market. You never know who you might run into, and many markets have art, musical performances, and more. It can be a great, low-cost way to spend a weekend afternoon. Entrance into the market is typically free, and the food you can purchase is often less than what you'd pay at the grocery store. You'll also be supporting your local community. Bonus!
Look for free music at your local coffee shop.
Many local venues in cities and small towns offer live music for free. Do an online search for your location and see what you might find.
Take a free class or workshop.
Is there a topic or subject you've always wanted to learn about? Maybe you'd like to learn how to write and publish a book, make pottery, or crochet? Or maybe you've always wanted to learn another language or be better at English? If you have a community center or venue in your area, check to see if they offer any free or low-cost classes or workshops throughout the year. Many community colleges and universities offer free classes and workshops, as well, so check out the annual calendar for colleges in your area.
Class Central is an online database of courses offered by universities and colleges throughout the United States, including a lot of free courses. Coursera is a great online resource of free and low-cost courses of all sorts, as well. If you're in the Texas area, there's also an organization that offers a variety of free classes known as Leisure Learning.
Get into improv.
If you like to laugh, then an improv class is for you. Improv classes are also great for speakers or business professionals who are trying to let go of nerves when they get up in front of people to present or speak. Look for a beginner class in your area by doing an online search. The cost will vary ($15 - $40 per class) depending on the teacher and class level or focus.
As of December 2016, there were 1.4 unemployed people for every job opening per State of Working America's Job Seeker's Ratio Total. If you're part of that group and you've been actively searching for a job, then treat yourself with some of the ideas above without breaking the bank. And if you don't get a call within a week or two from a recruiter, then you can go back at it and trust that you'll land your dream job at some point in the near future. Good luck!
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