When you have days where you struggle to just get out of bed, you might feel like searching for a new job is the last thing you can fit into your already massive list. Job hunting can be a daunting task for the most seasoned professional. Here are several steps you can take to make sure the job hunting process and interview go well, despite whatever symptoms you may be dealing with.
Know before you start to search what kind of job you want.
Are you in a financial position in which you take whatever you can get for now or can you be more selective in your approach? Once you know the answer to this question, the next step is to look at your daily rhythms and what you typically have to adjust to get through a day successfully. Are your symptoms worse in the morning? Do you need to find a job that starts after 10am or that has flexible office hours? Do you want a position that allows telecommuting (working from home)? What about hours? Part-time or full-time? Forty hours a week can seem overwhelming if you’re just getting back into the work force after an absence, so if you’re going this route, be sure to take the working conditions into account. Is there a lot of standing involved? Is it physically taxing or will you be sitting all day?
Be prepared to address gaps in your employment history.
Once you’ve narrowed down the job you’re searching for, you’ll start the application process.Some applications will ask for an explanation of gaps in your employment, while others do not. Be prepared to discuss this with any potential employer. Consider designing your resume in a functional format, as opposed to a chronological format, to highlight your skill set.
If given a choice, make sure you schedule your interview for a time of day that is best for you.
What’s your best time of the day, the time that your symptoms seem to be the least pervasive? If you find your mornings are when you feel the best, work to get the interview at that time of day.
Leading up to the interview, you need to know your body’s rhythms again and how it responds.
On the day of the interview, do you find that being busy and active leading up to it would be best, so your mind is not racing with thoughts that will cause you stress and symptoms? Or, do you need to be sure you’re reserving your energy for the interview? Different people have different needs in this area. Get the adequate rest that you know you’ll need to be sharp and fresh.
Dress for the part.
Arrive 10-15 minutes early to your interview, be confident and make sure you’re wearing the appropriate outfit for the job. Always look the interviewer in the eye, smile and radiate positivity.
Having a job while dealing with a chronic illness can be challenging; however, you will also likely find it to be rewarding on many levels. It can keep you distracted, make you feel like you’re contributing to a greater cause, and boost your self-esteem. These are all important steps in living the fullest life you can, despite your illness.