Self-Care When you’re out of Work

Today I’m sharing a handout I have found really helpful with clients over the years, particularly when someone is out of work for a period of time. Having too much time to think can be dangerous for the mind – fuelling anxiety and depression for many.

For anyone struggling with the lack of structure when you don’t have your normal work routine, or wondering why to even bother to get out of bed in the mornings, I recommend keeping some type of routine and sense of normality. Doing what we normally do helps us feel normal even in abnormal times. This is true whether you’re coping with trauma, new to retirement, out of work sick, recovering from physical or mental illness, have recently suffered loss, or other reasons. We all have human needs and if we are not meeting these needs we are more likely to go into stress or distress.

It can be useful to plan ahead and schedule something every day to meet each of these BACE needs:

Body Care (exercise, nutrition, fresh air, sleep, personal hygiene…)

Achievement (do something every day that gives you a sense of accomplishment, even clearing out a drawer or completing the crossword)

Connection (keep up with people important to you, connect with people you care about, even if you don’t feel like it – reach out. We all need human connection every day)

Enjoyment (fun time, doing something you find engaging, give yourself a laugh or do something for pleasure)

Doing something every day to meet these 4 BACE needs will keep you well.  Look after yourself and everyone else will benefit.

This pdf is a free resource on

Download PDF here