MANAGE JOB SEARCH STRESS: Get Some Exercise
On May 18 2014, year I posted an article about the importance of improving your image to enhance your job search prospects. Most of that post was focused on diet but it did speak to the importance of exercise to help slim down.
Your confidence and self-worth is likely impacted by your view of your image. If your self-confidence is negatively affected by your image, you will not perform well at interviews or at networking. Your image is important, but, your mental state is being evaluated as well, to be sure. One affects the other. If you cannot work through the stress of job search, it will be evident to anyone you meet. Exercise, however, is an excellent way to moderate stress, especially important during job search. A body engaged in some form of exercise will relieve the mind of worries that lead to stress.
While doing some research for this post I found a few highly relevant articles. So, instead of pontificating on the subject I have linked to articles listed below, which I know you will enjoy.
Workouts for Less Stress: Get ripped and relaxed. By Scott Quill, March 04, 2013: Published on Men’s Health
In this article Scott Quill recaps work by Steve Edwards, Ph. D., professor of sports psychology at Oklahoma State University. Edwards spoke to six distinct exercise personalities and then matches exercise routines to fit each personality type.
Stress Management – Ways to Relieve Stress
“According to Matthew Stults-Kolemainen, Ph.D., a kinesiologist at the Yale Stress Center says that exercise attacks stress in two ways; Exercise promotes production of neurohormones like norepinephrine that are associated with improved cognitive function, elevated mood and learning. And that can improve thinking dulled by stressful events – some research even shows how exercise can make you smarter.”
Benefits of exercise: reduces stress, anxiety, and helps fight depression, from Harvard Men’s Health Watch.
“Regular aerobic exercise can bring remarkable changes not just to your body, your metabolism, and your heart, but also to your spirits, reports the February 2011 issue of Harvard Men’s Health Watch. Aerobic exercise is the key for your head, just as it is for your heart. It has a unique capacity to exhilarate and relax to provide stimulation and calm, to counter depression and dissipate stress. Exercise reduces the levels of the body’s stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers and mood elevators. “Harvard Men’s Health Watch notes that you should exercise nearly every day. That doesn’t necessarily mean hitting the gym. But it does mean at least 30 minutes of moderate activity. “
“Exercise in almost any form can act as a stress reliever. Being active can boost your feel-good endorphins and distract you from daily worries.”
“Physical activity pumps up the production of brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters, endorphins. Sometimes called a runner’s high. Focus on a single task like exercise or mental activity results in energy and optimism, helping you remain calm and clear.”
“Regular exercise can increase self-confidence and lower the symptoms associated with mild depression and anxiety. Exercise also can improve your sleep.”
9 Exercises for Stress Relief
Kate Hanley, Published December 03, 2014
“Chronic tension can be the culprit behind both long-term conditions (depression, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure) and everyday health woes (headaches, back pain, insomnia, upset stomach, anxiety, anger). “
While you are between jobs, working on your image will help you manage stress. Practice your favorite routines until they become habits. Intense, rigorous exercise like jogging or cycling is awesome, but it is not your only option. Low impact activities like Yoga, Tai Chi, and dancing can be beneficial. Breathing exercises, and muscle relaxation routines are useful too. Skill-based sports like golfing and tennis are great options, if you are already familiar with those sports. Don’t underestimate the value of mundane activities such as housecleaning or gardening.
Do something for yourself. An appropriate physical activity will help you look and feel better. Achieving exercise goals will improve your image and self-confidence while helping you manage the stress level. Set goals and find a partner to keep you company. Focus on the task at hand while exercising. Don’t let your mind wander. Especially avoid negative thoughts. It will also burn off a lot of the stress that comes from the ups and downs of job-search.
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Jim Weber, President
New Century Dynamics Executive Search