Job seekers – Beat the holiday blues

If you’re out of work or underemployed, the holidays are a tough time. You may find yourself with extra unstructured time, but you might not have the money that it requires to do what you always wanted to do with extra time. And of course, you still want to land your dream gig – or just the next gig.

Friday Goody Bag to the rescue! Here are 11 tips to keep you positive and productive during the season when little career business seems to be transacted.

  1. Don’t buy into the blues. Although people may say “no one is hiring” over the holidays, that’s not true. Also, you don’t need to get 12% of all jobs; you just need to get one job. Keep looking!
  2. Design and print a “personal” business card with your LinkedIn and other contact information. You can use Moo or Vistaprint to create and print business cards in small quantities. Both sites offer design tools, or you can seek professional graphic design help. Make sure you’ve got a pocket full of these cards at all times.
  3. Attend free business networking events. Search Eventbrite for “business” and get out there in the mix. (Bring your business cards!)
  4. Uncover extra cash by scouring your bank account or credit card statements for “phantom” subscriptions.
  5. Improve your LinkedIn page, following Friday Goody Bag’s guidance.
  6. Take courses online. If you have a LinkedIn “Job Seeker” or other premium subscription, you can also take LinkedIn Learning (formerly courses online. If you’re in marketing, you can add advanced marketing automation to your skill set for free at HubSpot Academy.
  7. Try out co-working spaces. If you’re not strapped for cash and you want to put on work clothes and get out of the house, find a local co-working space with a flexible membership plan and spend a couple of days a week doing your job search from a busy office environment instead of from your kitchen table.
  8. Practice your “elevator pitch” – and not in the mirror. Put on work clothes, go to an office building in an area where you’d like to work, and ride the elevators. Talk to strangers. Look at the building directory. This will familiarize you with the business community where you want to be, and will help crack you out of a bad mood.
  9. Volunteer, carefully. Choose a volunteer opportunity that will expose you to valuable professional connections.
  10. Set up a tracking system to organize your job search. My favorite free software for project management is ClickUp, Their slogan, “One app to replace them all,” sounds like something from Lord of the Rings, but I’ve been using it for several months and love it. ClickUp has a robust free version and a library of video tutorials. Check it out and sign up here.