Thread: I stepped away from a job that was making me miserable a few months ago to focus on my mental health. I had been talking to a company during those months who gave me a verbal offer and then recently said they had to put the role on hold because of the market. Now I’m scrambling to find a job and people aren’t hiring until August at the earliest. If there’s a 4 month gap in my resume, will the “I was taking care of my mental health” line sound bad?

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I am just wondering why can’t you say that you got a verbal offer that never came through. Should be an understandable story. Also, adding you were learning new skills at that time doesn’t hurt. It says you didn’t give up and made the best use of your time.

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I’m wondering if I can say this…

Tell them you were consulting/traveling/took the summer off to spend it with your family.

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Use it to your advantage and say you pursued other projects then mention transferable skills you acquired along the way. You can also add you received a verbal offer but due to an economic downturn, the role was put on hold indefinitely.

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Right out of college I had an offer reneged due to a hiring freeze and I just told everyone that’s what happened and it wasn’t a huge deal. I don’t think saying you had to take leave for personal/mental health reasons is bad either. Just make it a small part of your story and focus on your skills and how you’d be awesome for the role!

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Yeah, I don't think it would be horrible to tell them what actually happened and then adding that you have been really intentional about finding a career opportunity that really aligns with your skills and that you can see yourself growing with long-term.

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If you want to be honest, tell them you got a verbal offer that fell through, you used that time to reflect on what you really wanted to do while taking a few online courses and shoring up some self perceived weaknesses in your skillsets, or something you'd like to incorporate into a new role with ______ company. (then actually take the courses, free or paid, whatever, just learn something in your time off and show them you learned something and took time to better yourself mentally and professionally). most places won't care and will see it as a positive.

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Obviously I can’t say “the job market screwed me over” what else can I say? Should I take some free classes and say I was working on my professional skills while also taking care of my mental health? Help!

Good Luck 👍🏼

All good- I left for the same reasons. My mental health was in a bad place. My words were "I was burned out, and took dedicated time off because I could" (2 months.) I was congratulated! 10 years ago, I took a buyout and it took me 9 months to find a new job. I told them I took extended time off because I could. I was celebrated for that response.

I read that employers just want to know that you were doing something to better your professional life during that time.

So I would say getting some quick certifications to show proof of that along with saying a job offer fell through because of a hiring freeze would be adequate!

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