Posted Wednesday, February 23, 2005
Are you unemployed or been laid off? You are not alone if that is any comfort to you. Worldwide millions of people are in the same predicament as you are. Unemployment and lay offs are stark realities of the downsizing, reengineering, restructuring, and automation in a sluggish global economy where corporations are trying every trick in the book to reduce costs, increase productivity and keep the organization lean, mean and profitable. Every one of us has gone through the phase of being unemployed once or more in our careers.
What does one have to undergo during this period. Endless wait for phone calls, eagerly scanning the emails or letters inviting you for a discussion, even a rejection letter seem to be good as you feel at least your existence is being acknowledged, the pain of unreturned calls from ex colleagues and friends whom once you helped or were close to, sudden disappearance of invitations which used to pour in when you were employed may all sound only too familiar to many of us.
The major problem is the loss of self dignity, fall from one's own self respect and severe depression. One feels lower than the lowliest creature. If you are young you can still look forward with better resilience. God forbid if you are one of those in the mid 30's or 40’s and may be waiting for months and even years for jobs which many think you are too old to handle in spite of your excellent track record.
The pain of running out money, ideas, contacts and even life itself is too intense. However you have a choice. You can either look into an empty future or you can believe that a bright future is just around the corner and you will turn that corner soon.
Here are 5 creative ways you can tackle your period of unemployment and turn the corner.
Learn a New Skill
One of the best ways to spend the time of unemployment or layoffs is to take up a course, learn a new skill, and improve your qualification. There is plenty of time available which needs to be productively used. Instead of worrying and fretting or just watching T.V., one may take up learning a new skill or improve professional knowledge by taking up a course. This would help one to be more competitive in the job market and increase the chances of landing a job sooner.
Create a job for yourself
Now this is the best alternative and the most creative way to spend your lay off period. Instead of waiting around for a job to come through you may as well set up a business of your own. Yes. It is easier said than done as most people may not have sufficient funds or investments to launch on one's own.
There are plenty of options to strike out on your own without investments. All you require is a PC and maybe an extra phone. Everyone has specialized knowledge. You can consider becoming a consultant in your area of specialization. If you feel your skills are not sufficient to set out as a consultant, step one above might help you in that direction. You can look at a home business by becoming an affiliate or join a network marketing opportunity. The money you may be making may not equal what you were earning. But remember the seeds planted today would take time to grow and yield much more in time than what you may make on a job in the long term. Just nurture the seed carefully, water it, weed it and grow it into a big harvest. The immediate benefits are that you have something to do and ward off negativity and depression.
Maintain a busy routine
Most of us slaves of our habits. Having been accustomed to a busy 12 hour schedule, you may find time hanging heavy. Prepare a schedule of activities for every day and keep busy. If don't have anything else to do, take in those free community lectures, go and meet some one and network, write something, have a learning schedule and read all the books you can. Prepare your daily schedule to keep yourself busy.
Building new contacts are the best way to tackle your unemployment. While keeping you busy, you never know who may turn out to be useful in helping you to find a job. You may end up striking good friendships lasting a lifetime. Keep a goal of getting to know at least one new person everyday and you have added up 365 more people to your address book. Whether in business or a job the more people you know more the circle of influence
Spend quality time with your family
Last but the most important; use the opportunity to spend quality time with your family. We always grumble that we do not find enough time for our family. Now is the golden opportunity. Share some intimate moments with your spouse. Watch your children grow. Enjoy these moments of adventure, wonderment, and joy very special to children and adolescents. Take some outings or walks in the morning and evening with your children, parents or spouse and catch up on what you missed. This could really uplift your spirits, help put up your confidence and develop a more positive outlook.
It is wise to remember that unemployment is not a sign of failure. It is only a temporary setback. Knowing how to bounce back is the key. To be creative in times of stress will help you with a new beginning, a new a career and realization of some unmet goals.
About the Author
R.G. Srinivasan is founder of Born to Win Forum. He is a certified trainer and consultant in training design & methodologies. He is also the author of e-books, publishes 2 ezines on success and motivation and Home Business. His articles are widely published across the world. He is featured as an Expert Author in leading content syndication portals. Check out his home business ezine at (http://home-businessleaders.tripod.com)