10 Tips For Getting A Job When You Have Anxiety

About 3 months ago I wrote a little post on my blog about my anxiety around getting a job (you can see the post here). During the Summer I found that my blog was earning me a nice little bit of money but it wasn’t quite getting me enough ££ to live really comfortably, and I found I was SO scared and anxious about finding myself a part time job. I had so many comments and responses to the blog post with people feeling similar and not knowing how to take the step from being unemployed to seeking work, and well… I now have a job! I work in administration for 4 hours a day, 5 days a week, and I’m loving it!

I’m not here to boast, but I’m going to give you my tips for finding a job when you’re a bit of an anxious mess. If I did it, so can you!

my-job-anxiety-2-2

TIP 1 – TAKE YOUR TIME

If you have real underlying anxiety issues, you need to conquer the anxiety first. Think about whether going to work is doable for you yet. For me, I used to get anxious going to places that were any further than a mile away, so I decided to sort those fears out a little first so that I’d feel okay travelling to work. To do this I just gradually exposed myself to further away areas every few days.

TIP 2 – FIND OUT WHAT JOB YOU CAN COPE WITH

I spent such a long time trying to decide what sort of job I wanted. I wanted something part time to go alongside my blog, and I also didn’t want it to be a particularly hectic job with lots of people and lots of standing on my feet. I ruled out retail work and I looked around for an office type job (I have experience in office work so this was good for me). Don’t jump in at the deep end.

TIP 3 – BE PREPARED FIRST

If you’re anxious about getting a job, do it in stages. First, update your CV and make sure you’re ready for an interview (even though you’re not having one). This way you don’t have a huge weight on your shoulders with loads of job stuff to do, and you’ll be ready to apply for a job if you want to.

TIP 4 – LOOK FOR JOBS BUT DON’T OVERDO IT

There are a million places to look for work, but it can be overwhelming if you’re a little anxious. Don’t spend hours and hours looking for a job online, just occasionally browse a few websites for job ideas first, then you start getting your head around the whole job thing. Even looking online for job ideas is a really big step forward, even if you don’t act on it yet!

TIP 5 – DON’T RUSH THE APPLICATIONS

Found a job which looks really perfect for you? If you start thinking ‘I might apply for this’ you might just freak out. It’s totally normal, I was the same! If you apply for a job and go for an interview within a few days, you might run the risk of making yourself more anxious, so think about ‘will I cope with this job’ before you apply.

TIP 6 – FIND OUT WHAT YOU’RE ACTUAL WORRIES ARE

Think about and write down what you’re actually worried about when it comes to work. In my case I was worried about having a panic attack at work (obviously never happens but anxiety is a bitch in that respect) and I thought of jobs which would alleviate those fears. There’s a job out there for everyone, you just have to find it.

TIP 7 – PUSH YOURSELF, BUT IN YOUR OWN TIME

The saying ‘two steps forward, one step back’ really applies to this sort of thing. You have to accept that trying to get a job is a difficult thing to go through if you’re anxious, but instead of thinking of the present horribleness, think of the future goal. I hated feeling anxious and would do anything to avoid situations where I may panic, but I also spent time realising that if I never try to conquer my fears then I’ll never make any progression. That inner belief is really good for your confidence in applying for jobs!

TIP 8 – UTILISE CAREERS HELPERS

Along my job finding journey I had some counsellor type workers who helped me figure out my issues and helped find suitable jobs for me. You feel like you’ve got someone supporting you the whole way and mine were great at helping me build a CV and whatnot, even though I ended up finding my current job on my own. Speak to your local counsellors or GP if you’re struggling!

TIP 9 – THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

I found that many jobs online were really tricky to apply for, and in the end I got a job by using my initiative and emailing a company that I knew through family friends. Sometimes job websites such as Reed are great, but as soon as you see ‘7748382 people have applied for this role’ it can be totally off-putting. Look around your local area to begin with and check your local post office for smaller jobs, then you can build yourself up over time. Don’t be afraid to start small, I did a paper round for 2 weeks in the Summer!

TIP 10 – IT’S OK TO BE SCARED

I was absolutely terrified of having interviews, but one thing that really helped was knowing that everyone freaks out before interviews. Whether you’re an anxious person or a really relaxed person, interviews and new jobs are terrifying for everyone – I found that knowing everyone is always ‘like this’ during the whole new job phase made it so much easier.

my-job-anxiety-2-1

Moral of the story? If you’re in a position to think about work then take your time, do one thing at a time and think about where your anxieties lie. If you’re not in a position to think about work but want to be, then take small steps to conquer your fears and every little push will get you further to your goals.

Hope this helps some of you, I feel so great that I have a job and I’ve barely felt any anxiety around it yet (who’d have thought!?). Let me know if you have any more tips for people to read in the comments!

R x

Follow

Bloglovin | YouTube | Twitter | Instagram

If you liked this post you may like How To Date When You Have Anxiety Issues or Love Your Imperfections.

16 Comments

  1. 18th October 2016 / 9:43 am

    I had six months off of work for my mental health and I found trying to apply for jobs really anxiety inducing! My anxiety is mainly based around the idea of not being able to leave somewhere/feeling trapped. So, the idea of going into work and realising that I can’t leave for another eight hours made me so anxious I was physically sick a few times. Now I work part time and it’s so much better for me. My shifts are never longer than five or so hours, and sometimes I do work eight or nine hours a day, but on a split shift so I don’t get that anxious. i think there’s the right job out there for you if you have anxiety, but it might take a while to get there

    Steph – http://www.nourishmeblog.co.uk

    • 18th October 2016 / 1:57 pm

      Yesss this sounds just like me! Sometimes working can be difficult if you’re doing a full day (I found that really anxiety inducing) but applying for jobs where I’d only work 4-5 hours was great because you know that it’s only a short time and you have time to go home and relax!

      R xoxo

  2. 18th October 2016 / 10:23 am

    When I first moved I found getting a new job difficult, mainly because of my anxiety. I’d been at my previous (and first) job ever for three years before moving. Between wondering how I was ever going to get a job then freaking out about interviews it was a tough process! Great post x

    hannahsnotebook.net

    • 18th October 2016 / 1:58 pm

      It’s such a tough process, and I don’t think people realise that! But after going through the process I found that it was definitely doable if you allow yourself time!

      R xoxo

  3. 18th October 2016 / 11:43 am

    This is honestly so inspiring to me! I remember reading your post about your job anxiety and feeling a little bit better that I wasn’t alone in my struggle. So when I saw on Twitter that you had a job, I literally felt so much happiness for you because it’s given me a bit of hope that I can overcome my job fears too just like you did. Thanks so much for writing this xx

    Lauren | itslaurenvictoria.blogspot.co.uk

    • 18th October 2016 / 1:59 pm

      In some ways I wasn’t sure how to write this blog post because I didn’t want to be like ‘haha I have a job’ etc, but I feel like I want to help others by showing that it is doable and to just take it in baby steps! So hope I helped you Lauren! 🙂

      R xoxo

  4. Hannie Arden Blaise
    18th October 2016 / 3:06 pm

    This is truly helpful and important to talk about, especially since I cope with a little bit of anxiety myself. It’s not very easy but possible, indeed. Thanks for sharing!

    • 19th October 2016 / 9:05 pm

      Thanks for your comment, hope you’re okay 🙂 it’s so difficult but I think knowing other people have gone through it really helps!

      R xoxo

  5. 18th October 2016 / 3:53 pm

    Such a great post! I’m getting ready to graduate in the spring, so finding a job is something looming over my head. I also deal with anxiety so this post really resonated with me. Thanks for sharing! Glad to know I’m not alone 🙂

    -Rachel
    http://thetrendytomboy.com/

    • 19th October 2016 / 9:05 pm

      I can imagine the upcoming idea must be a little frightening, but just take your time and do things one step at a time! Good luck with it 🙂

      R xoxo

  6. 18th October 2016 / 10:08 pm

    This was so nice and comforting to read about. I’m in this situation now after graduating and just thinking about looking for or getting a job really puts me on edge and gets my heart racing. I’ve applied for three so far with no response. So disheartening when it took so much for me to press that ‘send’ button but equally I have a sense of relief… It’s so horrible when I know my potential but I just feel so incapable because of my anxious disposition… I did manage to go and offer to volunteer in a charity shop so hopefully that will help give me some confidence with working, there will be less expectation as a volunteer. And I have my first therapy session tomorrow morning. Really nervous for that but I hope I can be helped somehow. 🙁
    Really well done on getting your job! I hope it helps you grow and conquer a few demons xx
    Nicole | Nikki Bays

    • 19th October 2016 / 9:06 pm

      I had the same, and it’s so disheartening isn’t it?! I think after a while you have to realise that places get so many applicants so getting no replies doesn’t mean you’re bad. Charity work is deffo a great start, I’d’ve done that if there was one nearby! Good luck with it 🙂

      R xoxo

  7. 21st October 2016 / 5:47 pm

    These were some great tips! The interview process terrifies me, I hate being asked questions on the spot and have the tendency to have a mind block under pressure but like you said, you just have to tell yourself that everyone goes through this process. We’re all in the same position and probably all as terrified as each other, which is definitely reassuring!

    Toni x
    http://www.clarkecouture.co.uk

    • 24th October 2016 / 9:23 pm

      So glad you found it useful! It’s so horrible but knowing everyone goes through the same really does help! 🙂

      R xoxo

  8. Emily
    24th October 2016 / 11:54 am

    I struggle with job interviews as my anxiety always gets the better of me. Knowing that people can overcome this or learn to deal with it, gives me the confidence to know that one day I will as well.

    • 24th October 2016 / 9:25 pm

      It certainly doesn’t help when it comes to interviews, but I know that I’ve been through the process myself and managed. With anxiety things are never as bad as we seem (we’re always fine once we’re in the situation) and the same applies for interviews!

      R xoxo

Leave a Reply

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked *