Boston University College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences: Sargent College:
Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation

Boston University College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences: Sargent College:
Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation

Gaps in Employment

What do I do about gaps in my employment history?

Gaps in employment history are time periods in which you were not working, volunteering, or going to school. Gaps worry a lot of people with disabilities who fear that employers will make guesses about the reasons for those gaps.  Employers will want to know about the gaps, as part of what they look for is consistency.

The key to dealing with gaps in your resume is to be planful and positive. Being planful is preparing yourself with how you want to talk about the gap(s).  You will want to say something positive about any gaps.  As with the rest of the application process, you are selling your qualifications and ability to do the job.  Here are some of examples:

“I was helping to care for my elderly mother, cleaning and doing landscaping, which taught me some new skills I didn’t have before.”
“I was helping my sister who was writing a book. I edited it for her.”
“I was working on my mental health recovery and was able to participate in an excellent training program.  I feel much better now and am really looking forward to get back into the labor market.”

It is good idea to rehearse your answers to difficult questions so that you don’t stumble in a job interview.

Return to the main "Getting Work" page.

Where am I in my employment journey?

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