The blunt realities of unemployment
This can be either a positive or negative. If you had a part-time business that you never had time for, now you have a full 24 hours with no excuses. When you are at work all you think about is home. Home is the ultimate goal of the day. Escaping the cubicle, Uber-Car, restaurant, or commercial truck is what we strive to do. When you no longer have the excuse of work clogging your schedule, you are challenged to find ways to utilize time. Idle time can have the most negative impact on your mind. Couple that negativity with anxiety and you have doubts hovering over you like wolf clouds. You now have time to exercise, drop off and pick up the kids from daycare or school, and meet with your spouse for lunch. The converse is that time is working against you. Bills need to be paid on TIME, and unemployment is only temporary. It will run out.
Touching up the résumé
This should be the number one thing that you should do. For most people who have recently faced a job loss, this is essential to the whole process. Your resume is easy to make and gives the future boss a glimpse of the potential employee he or she is getting. If you have no clue on how to make a resume and you are confused, you can always get your 20-something old cousin, or spouse to complete the task. Remember to create another email that is appropriate for a resume. For example, Dirtbike_dan666@hellsex.com is not a good look for that administrative assistant job. JohnSmith@applepie.com is more suitable. Use up to date phone numbers that are current, and use job references of people who are LEGIT. No potheads or alcoholics who can’t hold a decent conversation with someone. You need people who can vouch for you, and speak the language a prospective employer wants to hear.
“Wassup Sir!! Oh that boy Kevin is my Dude. When it comes to his gig he is a beast sir!”
Getting a job is a job
You have to spend countless hours of the day in front of a computer, filling out applications for jobs that you feel you have a 2 percent chance of getting. The job post says that you need over 15 years experience with a PhD in Pseudorectomy (lol), and you only have two years experience at Shake Shack with a Master’s Degree in Zoology. The odds are slim, but you never know. You must be on alert for emails that kindly deny your job application by saying “We appreciate your interest in our company”. There will be constant phone interviews and awkward in person interviews that will be the biggest waste of time. Jobs that will hide the hourly pay or salary from you, until the interview, what is usually less than the unemployment that you are already receiving, before tax. There will be days when you will have to take a city job test for an open job vacancy. Lines will be as long as Black Friday before store opening, and the test will be all the questions you studied for. The guy or gal who aced the test to make it on the top of the availability list, just so happened to be a cousin of the city supervisor. Yes, you will have to accept the fact that nepotism may have played a role, but what can you do? Right before you give up the fight and say “To Hell with this, I’m going to the Army!”, another job you were seeking will finally call you and you will move down the yellow brick road.
Harbor no ill will
Yes, Danny, your ex boss, was an asshole. He would never greet you with the proper respect, when in his vicinity. He would berate you in front the cute secretaries, when he could’ve talked to you in private. Unprofessional as he may be, never talk ill of a past boss or superior. Most industries are connected,i.e., medical field, package delivery, restaurant, or transportation. With the economy being in a frugal state, most companies are becoming conglomerates and merging with each other. With that being said, some employees may have siblings that work for opposing companies. Cousins who are both in sales, one works for Verizon, the other for Sprint. Everyone talks, whether they admit it or not. If you slander Danny, it may offend his brother-in-law Eric, the quiet guy who is assistant operations manager at a job you are trying to score. He will smile gracefully in the interview room, and brood in silence as you exit the premises. Be careful, you never know who knows who.
Become financially literate
As you deal with this stint of unemployment, you will go through some financial turmoil. That fly car with the bells and whistles will most likely be repossessed.The credit score will take a hit. Everything that you rationalized spending crazy money on will go out the window. That 40 dollar cricket wireless phone plan will look more appealing than Sofia Vergara in a scantily clad bikini. You will learn that a quarter will get you a gallon of water, and 5 dollars will stretch far in a Spanish Mercado Carniceria. Ralph’s market will become too snooty for your taste. You may have to hop off the hipster-train and eat non-organic fruits until the checks come back. The ridiculous gym club membership that you never used needs to be cut. The 200 dollar spa retreats that you went on must cease. You may have to go a season without the NFL package until things get better. It stinks, but you have to find a way to make the dollar stretch. This is the time to go to the library and soak up as much knowledge as you can about money. I am not telling you to become a cheapskate for life. I am stating that value becomes more important than price. Unemployment will teach you a lot about money. Its not a way you should be forced to learn, but it will make you more aware.
That’s what friends are for. Right?
Going to an in-laws on Thanksgiving is as embarrassing as undressing in front of a crowd. When you are unemployed it feels like the whole world knows. Random people that you never have met before will approach you with the whole “UPS is hiring!” or ” The coffee shop on Winston Ave, and Bloomington Blvd are hiring”. Of course, they mean well, but it doesn’t sit well with you, when you know that you have been busting your ass putting in applications. Some baby boomers are completely dumbfounded when it comes to job searching on the internet. They make getting a job sound like getting a Snicker bar at a candy shop. They’re all like “Hey, When I was your age, I went down to the Post Office and talked with an Irish fella named Jim O’Malley. I didn’t even have to interview, I was driving a big-rig the next day with no license. Back in my day, you learned on the spot! None of this computer crap.” I’m like “Yeah, you also could snort coke and drive drunk in your day too. Where’s the honor in that?!” The insecurity will be constant, but if you let the right person know, you might be able to land the decent job you’ve been searching for.