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What does unemployment mean to you?

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One reason why unemployment can be so traumatic is because of the tendency of many employees to deny the signs of coming unemployment. During the period of their denial, they do not start discretely looking for other jobs while they still have their current jobs.

Once they no longer are in denial regarding their pending unemployment, they often panic or get depressed. Panic is not conducive to cool, rational thinking that can help them to maximize their chances of receiving good severance packages, excellent references, and unemployment benefits. Avoiding depression will help unemployed people to take productive steps to deal with their unemployment. Not avoiding depression increases the chances that they will waste their unemployment benefits, because they are too depressed to take productive measures.

For people who are not in denial, who have no debts, and who have money saved, unemployment can be a more productive experience. Rather than just desperately searching for any jobs available, they have more options. This is especially true if their spouses are still employed. Unemployment for such people might allow them to:

  1. Upgrade their skills by taking college courses, subsidized with severance benefits, unemployment benefits, and college grants.
  2. Start small businesses that they always have wanted to own.

Making these career moves also can help unemployed people to fill in the employment gaps in their resumes and to change to a type of work they will like better. Not all unemployed people, however, may be ready for these career moves.

Those who are not ready for such career moves have chances to develop increased self-worth from more areas of their lives than just from their careers. After experiencing how vulnerable they are when they depend upon their jobs so much, they might decide to allot more importance to other areas of their lives. Examples might be their families, friends, churches, and hobbies.

Getting out of debt and saving money are important aspects of handling unemployment well. To do this, many consumers need to rethink their materialistic lifestyles. In many ways, a materialistic lifestyle makes life more difficult than a simpler lifestyle.

Because unemployment is so widespread now, it should not be considered to be as much of a stigma as it was in the past. People need to prepare for it instead of denying that it will ever happen to them.

What are your thoughts on unemployment? Please comment below.

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