I have been unemployed for going on 9 months.
Here is what I have learned.
1. It stinks. I thought I was set as a social worker. I worked with children who were diagnosed with a mental illness. Boy, was I wrong! My agency had huge budget cuts and I was one of them. I haven't been able to find a job. I've had 12 interviews with 12 rejections. I keep plugging away and hoping that something comes soon.
2. It can be lonely. I am a very social person and now it seems as if I am all alone. The friends I had at work no longer call me or return my calls. Their loss but it still stings a bit.
3. I really had to learn how to manage my money. I knew how to do it before but now I am super vigilant about it. I was able to make huge cutbacks and I can't say that I miss them.
4. You can work out better deals for yourself when you call your credit cards or other services. I called all of them and explained the situation and they were all helpful. They helped me cut and extra $300 out of my monthly bills.
5. I had to learn the difference between need and want. I might not have everything that I want but I have everything that I need.
6. I can't believe how wasteful I was in the past.
In the past, I never thought twice about the food I was throwing away. Now, I try not to throw away anything. If there are leftovers it is now my lunch for the next day. If the fruit I bought starts to get soft it is turned in to a fruit compote for my yogurt. I reuse everything. I am also a crafter so this helps me a lot. I have been able to go stash diving in my yarn room. I haven't needed to buy yarn in 9 months. I am able to use stuff that I forgot I even had. This year I am knitting Christmas gifts and I am almost half way done.
7. I have been able to dedicate a lot of time to my knitting charity. I have been able to knit a ton of items so far this year. I am currently knitting prosthetic breasts and then donating them to the local cancer center.
8. I need to take time and take care of me. I spent so much time taking care of others that I forgot to take time for me. One perk to unemployment is that I do have a lot of time...and I do mean a lot.
This is what I have learned from being unemployed. I am trying to turn a negative life event into something positive. I hope everything is well with all of you. I thank you for your friendship and your support.