Power Players

Kevin O'Leary: How to stay optimistic and resilient if you've been laid off

Kevin O'Leary on how to stay resilient even if you've lost your job
Kevin O'Leary on how to stay resilient even if you've lost your job

Three months into the Covid-19 pandemic, and even as states across the country emerge from the resulting economic shutdown, the unemployment rate is still near its highest level in the post-World War II era. 

In such uncertain times, "it's really hard to stay resilient and optimistic," "Shark Tank" star Kevin O'Leary tells CNBC Make It. Especially if you've been laid off or your business isn't operating at 100% due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

"We're not used to this," O'Leary says. However, he does have some advice to help get through it. 

To start, "keep a routine," O'Leary says. In fact, it's something he does personally to help deal with these unusual times. "I still get up at 5 every morning and sit on the bicycle and work out. I've been doing that for years. I'm not stopping now."

"Go outside and walk around a little bit once in a while," O'Leary says, "but keep that social distancing. Just get some fresh air and clear the cobwebs out of your mind."

(Indeed, experts say a routine helps focus and relieves anxiety – the same goes for spending time in nature.)

O'Leary also suggests keeping your social media "up to speed."

But perhaps most importantly, even if you're not currently working, O'Leary believes staying in touch with colleagues is key.

"You've got to keep your network alive," he says. "Even if you've been fired ... you have to stay relevant. People have to know you're still out there.

"That really matters," he says, because "you want to get a job again." 

"People have to know you're out there and you're thinking about them. That includes employees and customers and family and friends."

O'Leary himself makes it a point to touch base with his business associates.

"We get on a call and we talk to each other about what happened in the day and what could happen tomorrow and give each other news," he says. "It's a way of just having a a social bond in a weird way."

And even if you're social distancing, technology is a great way to stay connected, he says. 

"We've never had a pandemic like this, but also we've never had technology like this to let us communicate with each other."

Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to "Shark Tank."

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