“You can conquer almost any fear if you will only make up your mind to do so. For remember, fear doesn’t exist anywhere except in the mind.” ~ Dale Carnegie
As companies struggle to maintain some of their profit structure in our shifting global economy, many have had to find ways to increase productivity levels at less cost; the solution has been to cut costs by laying-off people. The impact of this inevitable decision is that more and more people have lost or continue to lose jobs, and most of us know several people in job transition.
“Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.” ~ Leo Buscaglia
This is not a time to be fearful about asking for help or shy about pursuing options that make good financial sense. The downturn has exacted a tremendous toll on millions of households and many people are depending on savings, goodwill and out-of-the-box solutions to keep head above water.
“You are only as strong as your purpose, therefore let us choose reasons to act that are big, bold, righteous and eternal.” ~ Barry Munro
For those who are still in a position to share generously of their good fortune, this is the time to stay attentive to the needs of close friends/family and neighbors and offer help without obvious prompting. This is not the time to let a false sense of civility prevent you from helping others.
For those who are in the throes of adjusting to the loss of income, this can be an incredibly overwhelming phase for you and your loved ones. Take a deep breath and cast aside the temptation to assign blame to former co-workers or dump your anger and frustrations on others; this is a critical time to reassess what truly matters to you and your family and find quick and easy ways to meet those needs.
“You can measure a man by the opposition it takes to discourage him.” ~ Robert C. Savage
You will need to develop a plan of action to keep your household afloat. As you begin to reorganize your financial life, create a plan with a holistic approach to managing your household; as searching for your next job will not be enough. The following 10 easy tips will help you stay positive and keep body, mind and spirit in sync. See below…
“You can stand tall without standing on someone. You can be a victor without having victims.” ~ Harriet Woods
Cut the Excess: The first step is to trim the areas where extravagance has ruled the roost in your household. If you are a mall rat and enjoy frequent shopping trips, this is the time to put the credit cards away and set limits on what you buy and when. Even food shopping, take-outs and restaurant visits will need to be re-evaluated. For those with discount, warehouse/club memberships, don’t get tempted to buy more and stockpile items, trim the fat and stick to a list that leaves you with more cash flow for emergencies and essentials. When necessary, use the many coupons that fill your mailbox as they are an excellent way to cut costs.
Strengthen Family/Friends Connections: This is an important time to reach out to extended family and close friends to inform them of your predicament, and ask for referrals and tips on available job opportunities. It is also a good time to let them know that you are no longer able to do certain things; especially social events or outings that require large financial outlays. It is important to solicit the support of friends and family as they can become the Achilles heel that prevents you from maintaining financial commonsense.
“You don’t drown by falling in the water. You drown by staying there.” ~ Unknown Author
Build Your Community: If you are involved in your community via a place of worship, online social network sites, local participation in events and such, it will be wise to let those you respect in your community know of your plight; the goal is also to get the word out that you are looking for new employment. In this economic downturn, the competition for jobs is fierce; ignoring to reach out to as many contacts as possible can only diminish your opportunity for employment. Use your community as an additional resource for recommendations and job tips.
Organize Your Daily Job Search: After the initial shock wears off, take a moment to create a schedule to help you develop a daily routine. If you have not written a resume in many years, seek the assistance of a qualified center or resume writer and create several to fit a number of job areas. Keep in mind that even though some people think it’s a numbers game and mail hundreds of resumes, this is not wise. Apply only to jobs that you are well qualified for. You want to showcase your strengths therefore, being overqualified or under-qualified for a position will not get you an interview.
“You don’t lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case.” ~ Ken Kesey
Get Educated: Do your research to find information on funding and other help that might be available to you through the federal stimulus bill. Look into financial instruments that might help you gain some breathing room for your home. Consider applying for either a Workforce 1 skill enhancement voucher or if you were laid off by one of 31 financial institutions after June 30, 2008 you might be eligible for a re-training National Emergency Grant (NEG). Take advantage of re-training opportunities as a way to shore up existing skills.
Keep Up Your Exercise Routine: Maintain an exercise routine and commit to get out and exercise regularly. This is an important way to keep your endorphins stimulated and your mind clear. Do Exercise; walks in the park, running outside, yoga classes or even a swim at your local Y are all excellent ways to stay in top form as you prepare yourself for your next job.
“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt
Learn More and Read more: Spend quality time in your local library and use the quiet time to catch up on your reading. If you have a hobby that was pushed to the wayside while you pursued a demanding career, this is the time to dust off the covers and re-kindle your love for the hobby; ideally this should be an inexpensive hobby. Spending time reading and reconnecting with the world of books will broaden your perspective, and give you material to refer to in interviews and social situations where the focus should not be on your job loss.
Visit Museums and other Places of Interest: For stimulating entertainment, try your local museums; most have a suggested fee scale and you may give only what you can afford. They are also great places to connect with like minded souls and will provide an excellent way to have a family outing. Visiting outdoor sites of interests or hiking around your area is another way to have family time that won’t be exorbitant.
“You will never do anything in this world without courage. It is the greatest quality of the mind next to honor.” ~ James Allen
Carpool with Friends and Family: When necessary, carpool with friends and family for outings or short trips. Given the price of gas, it makes financial sense to not have all your vehicles on the road burning up gas. Looking for easy ways to share rides and save on gas will be a wise option. This is particularly imperative if you like to take road trips, socialize a lot via trips to/with friends, and also if you have teens who attend the same school and/or like to go out with friends regularly.
Potluck Meals and Meetings: Having potluck meals/meetings are an excellent way to get people to gather and enjoy quality time together. You can also organize potluck job review dinners and use them as a way to share tips and information with others who are going through the same predicament. Given the current growth of displaced workers in our communities, it will be wise to manage our funds carefully, find sensible ways to support each others efforts to regroup, and seek new employment with a healthy, positive attitude.
Trust that your efforts will pay off and they will. Now go do it. What are your thoughts? What are you doing differently?
Chinese Symbols ~ Google Images
Nature Shot #22 ~ by Veronika Pinke
Sun Flare and Dark Center of a WR Star ~ via NASA
Idea Bulb ~ Google Images
Dark Storms ~ by Chaiten spd
Times of Chaos ~ Nigeria via Google Images
Jehad Nga Iraq ~ via NYTimes