Tips for Bouncing Back from Unemployment

Being laid-off can be one of the most stressful, depressing times of your life; if you let it. This is one of the few times in our nation’s history when people are staying on unemployment for over a year, only to find it run out before they’ve found a new job. How you survive unemployment depends on the way you approach the situation.

While no one on unemployment can remain upbeat 100 percent of the time, the more positive your outlook, the better you will feel both physically and mentally. When you get down, and you inevitably will, taking proactive steps can help you pull yourself up. Here are some beneficial ways to spend this time in your life:

1. Embrace Change
Change can be difficult; when it’s forced, it can be near impossible to bear. Give yourself a day or two to grieve your loss and then get on with your life. Chances are that you’ve never had as much free time on your hands as you do now; use it wisely!

If you’ve always dreamt of being a teacher, go back to school. If you loved your job but wished you would have been able to move higher up the ladder, take courses to enhance your skills. Have you always wanted to sell your wares? Open an Etsy shop.

There are many government grants for those that have found themselves unemployed and want to return to school or even just take a few classes. Take full advantage of this free money and go get the training you’ve always wanted.

2. Talk It Out
Find someone that you can talk to. It doesn’t matter if it’s a relative, friend or even a professional. The weeks following a job loss can bring a flood of emotion. You may find yourself laughing hysterically one minute and on your knees in tears the next. Don’t keep your feelings to yourself. For the sake of your mental health, find someone that you can vent to, laugh with or even just sit with silently if that’s what you need.

3. Cut Your Spending
Even though you’ll be receiving unemployment benefits, it’s a good idea to cut spending where you can. Apply for budget payments with your utility companies, reduce your cable subscription, drop the landline and rework your cell phone contract. Shop at the less-expensive grocery store and cook more meals at home. There are tons of ways you can save money and, trust me, you’ll get used to it.

4. Continue Searching
Chances are that when you first lose your job, you’ll spend days searching for a new one and quickly becoming disheartened when you don’t receive replies. Don’t give up! Revamp your resume, continue applying for positions you are qualified for and follow-up with those companies you’ve applied with.

If you’re lucky enough to land an interview, don’t stress about buying a new outfit. If you’ve got nothing in your closet to wear, head to the local thrift shop. It may not be somewhere you’ve shopped previously but you’ll be surprised at the selection. Alternately, join a Yahoo group like Freecycle and let people know what you’re looking for.

5. Take Care of Yourself
Above all, when you lose your job, the most important thing you can do is to take care of yourself. Find a hobby, volunteer at your local animal shelter, just get up and do something. Nothing will make you more depressed than sitting in the house feeling sorry for yourself. Get out there and live your life! It’s cliche, but things will get better. Try to look at this as a bump in the road, not the highway leading to the rest of your life.

Bouncing back from unemployment can be difficult for even the most positive person. You have more control over your mental state than you think. The better your outlook, the easier you’ll find getting through to the other side of unemployment.

Author Andy Trace is a money consultant and content contributor for Finance Choices comparison website, featuring detailed comparisons for the top providers, and offering bad credit credit cards for those who’ve experienced an unfortunate hit to their credit score.

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