Thursday, November 13, 2014

Advice For The Unemployed

     There are fewer events in one's life that create more vulnerability than losing a job. I have recently become painfully aware of such vulnerability, being dismissed from my employment of eleven years due to a reorganization of my employer's work force. The emotions of unemployment range from sadness to anger along the continuum of job loss, and I understand how it can lead one to become depressed, complacent, and acquiescent. Especially in a flaccid economy like we have been experiencing the last six to seven years,
     Nothing I can say will placate the feelings of rejection that result from being let go from a job, especially when it is for reasons unrelated to the individual's job performance. Unemployment is a status just about everyone will experience in life, some more than others. But those who deal with it as a bump in the road as opposed to a sojourn through a dark and unexplored jungle, will inevitably survive the experience and thrive as a result.
     The first thing one must do upon losing a job is to stay in a routine. Get up early every morning, shower, and dress for the day. If nothing else, this act of participation in the ethos of work will prepare one for the eventual return to work. The small sense of accomplishment one gets from preparing to engage in the world as it is, instead of languishing in depression over the world as it was, will clear the mind of negative thoughts so new opportunities may reveal themselves.
     It is not easy, but one must actively seek work every day, this is the "job" now. Attack it with vigor, or if vigor is in short supply, "Fake it 'Till You Make it.". Set the attainable goal of applying for at least one job position a day. Again, this will nurture a sense of accomplishment and will build upon itself. It will also mitigate the feeling of rejection that may result from applying for too many positions at a time or none at all. Slow and steady wins the race. It is better to spread out the job search effort so that every day the seeker is doing something towards attaining employment.
     The most important part of being unemployed is to keep emotions as level as possible. Do not take the rejections too hard, or get too excited about potential job opportunities. The job search is an odyssey of ups and downs, mitigation of both will lead to less chance of depression and anxiety. Even in a slow moving economy there are opportunities. One must not limit oneself to only positions comparable to the position just lost. New careers usually rise up in the ashes of old ones. And above all repeal depression by always being grateful for what you do have, not saddened for what you have lost.

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