Thousands of Americans are facing either the reality or
the threat of job loss. If you, or someone close to you, faces
unemployment, here are some things to keep in mind:
Rebuild your emotional strength before you begin
working on the road to recovery. Losing a job under any
circumstances is traumatic to most people.
You will naturally go through a grieving process.
Let yourself grieve and recover emotionally.
Don't be afraid to take a time out from your
concerns. Go for long walks. Rest more. Relax more. Try to
refresh your spirit with whatever books, music, activities or
rituals you find comforting and inspiring.
Nurture positive thoughts. Positive thoughts lead to
positive action. Know that you have been successful in the past
and will be successful again.
Reach out to family and friends. Let them help
Use this fateful event as an opportunity to refocus
your values and redefine your goals. Identify what's most
important in your life and define your goals accordingly. Don't
dwell on the things you can't control. Instead, work on the
things you can control.
As soon as you feel strong enough, take the necessary
steps to survive hard times:
Notify creditors of your situation and inform them
of your ability and plans to make payments. However, don't make
promises you can't keep.
Sit down with the members of your household and list
all expenses. Determine which expenses can be eliminated, reduced
or deferred. Make cuts that are really going to count.
Develop revised written budgets covering the next
several months, based on the new information you develop. Control
your spending accordingly.
Use new credit only for absolute necessities that
cannot be delayed, forgone or paid for in any other way. Keep
careful account of the credit used.
Take steps to regain employment. And take advantage
of available programs, benefits and insurance to supplement your
income. Seek help that you need and follow through in using
Make use of community resources to maintain health,
vitality and a positive outlook. Eat well, sleep well and
maintain social contacts.
Comfort, Don't Cheer
If family members or friends are facing job loss,
remember that grieving is a natural process. Grieve with them.
Don't try to cheer them up before they're ready. Support them
emotionally with your presence, your assurances and your
willingness to listen. Be a good companion, providing sincere
interest, compassion and positive talk.
The best motivation is often the high regard and high
expectations our friends have for us. Present a canvas filled
with sincere compliments, exciting challenges and positive
Above all, provide the practical help your loved one
needs while recovering emotionally. Help do the tasks that need
to be done and help shoulder the concerns that need to be
shouldered so recovery can proceed quickly.