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What being unemployed has taught me.

Monday, July 22, 2013

I have been unemployed for going on 9 months. emoticon 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. emoticon

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. emoticon

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. emoticon 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.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • KAREN608
    What you are learning in spending may well carry on when you do work, putting more money into savings, realizing wants aren't so satisfying and having a better cushion of savings helps later on with unplanned needs and repairs. In the last 5 years or so I have had to cut down and found we could eat well on far less money, cooking at home & we liked the food more. Not many choices in small town USA. This is so well written.

    I have craft items and am still trying to figure out how to a have a craft time for ladies, at some point. I figure that doing uplifting things for others is a sort of work, even without pay. I can't do hard physical labor as much so had to stop cleaning a church. So volunteering is my work. I don't usually blog about that.

    Time for oneself is VERY important.
    1700 days ago
    I recently became unemployed, too. It is very difficult. Fortunately, I have a great deal saved for retirement and can use that as I am 62 and retirement wasn't so far off. But, you are right, it really forces you to think about everything that makes a difference. It's amazing what you I used to buy and now can live without.
    1720 days ago
    man-o-man, do i understand. i hope things turn around for you soon.
    1727 days ago
    Way to take something that is tragic and turn it into positive. I'm sure the right position will come along...just have to be patient. I know that's hard but I have faith in you! Love the way you have shared your frugal tips with us.
    1734 days ago
  • JESSIKA_56
    Some good lessons, but hoping you find something soon!
    1736 days ago
  • ELMA1913
    I think your attitude is great. You have admitted your weaknesses, and have learned so much. I do hope that you find a job VERY soon, but think the things you have learned the last nine months will serve you well for a very long time.
    1736 days ago
    Praying job comes your way soon! I too find being at home can be lonely when you friends were from work, or they work so cannot socialize during the day. Thanks for reminding me about knitting for charity as I have not knit anything in a bit for my church knitting charity group. I will have to check my stash!
    1736 days ago
    I know what you mean about learning to spend wisely and not just go and get what you want. Had to do that after my husband passed and his pension and disability went too. Now am waiting for my disability to start and that will be next month but will not cover the bills.
    1737 days ago
    emoticon This too shall pass. Your attitude is great. Continue to take it one day at a time. Hopefully, the perfect job for you will become available in the near future.

    1737 days ago
    You're to be admired for the charity you do despite the situation.
    Do you have an unemployment bureau in your area that can do career aptitude testing? If so, can they also assist you in resume writing and/or finding job interviews?
    1737 days ago
  • ACRAIG921
    I'm sorry about your situation. It sounds like you really are trying to make the best of it. Stay strong and the perfect opportunity will come to you in time. Best of luck!!
    1737 days ago
    1737 days ago
    My heart goes out to you for your situation. I am inspired by the way you are dealing with this. It is obvious that you are a strong, determined person. I wish nothing but the best for you. You deserve it, so hang in there and keep doing what you been doing! You are emoticon
    1737 days ago
    Thank you for your honesty. I wonder if some of your work friends don't return your calls because they feel guilty/uncomfortable about your situation. I had a friend who was unemployed for a long time, too, and I didn't know how to be supportive after a while. But like they say, in hard times, you find out who your REAL friends are!
    1737 days ago
  • MATER88
    I'm so sorry this has happened to you. But I admire that you are still active and having such an optimistic attitude. I wish you well in your job search. emoticon
    1737 days ago
    Thanks for your honesty in sharing a difficult subject. I've been unemployed several times since moving to Florida; I've found that looking in areas normally not in my "usual" job description have given me some off-the-beaten-path opportunities. Broaden your scope (if you haven't already) and try something new? I'll be praying and rooting for you! These are difficult times for many of us and I'm glad you can make "lemonade out of lemons." You've added the "sugar" with your sweet attitude. You'll look back on this time and be glad you had this time of reflection! Hang in there, babe! emoticon emoticon Blessings, JOY
    1737 days ago
    well said. Hope your new job comes soon
    1737 days ago
  • KAT321123
    I think this is the first blog post I've read of yours and I so admire your dedication (continuing to apply for jobs after not getting one is SO hard!) and self-awareness is inspiring as well as your willingness to stay positive and keep contributing to society in a positive way (I didn't even know someone could knit and donate prosthetic breasts!).

    I'm also a mental health social worker and have, at times, figured there are plenty of clients and that I'll always have a job. Unfortunately, as you pointed out, there are also tons of budget cuts. Good luck in your journey!
    1737 days ago
  • -SHAWN-
    "I can't believe how wasteful I was in the past."
    I needed to read that. Ridiculous spending snuck up on me again.

    1737 days ago
    1737 days ago
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