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Deal with stress

Veterans and military service members can have high levels of stress.

While finding a new job—and replacing your lost wages—may be your top priority, it’s important to deal head-on with the stress you may feel as a result of a job loss.

Understanding and dealing with the stress of being laid off should be your first step. Many experts recommend that you don't even begin looking for a new job until you've given yourself at least a couple of weeks to deal with your job loss. Taking the time to process your own grief—and, if necessary, reassure your family—allows you to turn to your job search feeling refreshed and positive instead of angry, frustrated, or depressed.

Combat stress with the following recommendations:

  • Get plenty of sleep. It is difficult to make up for lost sleep and being tired magnifies stress, so make sleep a priority. Keep in mind that sleeping too much could also be a problem, so try not to overdo it. Contact a physician if you have questions about how much sleep you need.

  • Eat right. What you eat plays a big role in how your body copes with stress and fights illness. Avoiding junk food and big changes in your diet will help keep you well.

  • Exercise. Not only is exercise good for you, but it's a great tool for eliminating stress and anxiety. Exercising with others can help you keep your commitment to yourself.

  • Talk about it. Expressing feelings and concerns about job transition with trusted friends and family will help alleviate your stress. Getting feedback from other people will also help to keep the situation in perspective.

  • Focus on things you enjoy. It's not going to be easy to ignore, but doing things that you enjoy can help take your mind off of something you find stressful, and feel more positive - even if it's just for a time.

Do I have any rights and protections as a laid-off worker?
 
Yes. In addition to unemployment benefits, you do have other rights. Find details in the following resources: