Right now there are an estimated 15.1 million people out of work in this country. And if you’re reading this you might be one of them. As such, no amount of jobless benefits tied to extended tax cuts will be enough to bring the HO-HO-HOpe back to your household this holiday season. And short of a seasonal job prospect, coping with continued unemployment will likely add more than a little fatalism into this festive time of year.
Fortunately, our friends at finance-friendly WalletPop have put together a few tips to help out-of-work individuals get through another holiday season. In a nutshell:
(1) Take a Much-Needed Break From the Job Hunt
While this advice may seem easier said than done when you’re unemployed--possibly facing foreclosure, mounting medical costs, and drowning in consumer debts--the reasons for taking a holiday from looking for work this season are twofold: (a) According to WalletPop, “Traditionally, hiring slows down during the last few weeks of December anyway. Decision-makers are frequently on vacation and sending in your resume just risks having it get overlooked or buried deep in the stack of accumulated email. So give it a rest;” and (b) You likely need and deserve a break from this winter’s “what ifs” to focus on what’s important: family, friends, and a season for seeing both.
(2) While You’re At It, Reevaluate Your Resume
Putting a pause on pounding the pavement for work this December doesn’t mean you have to take a break from rebuilding your credentials. Use this time with family, friends and colleagues who work for companies of interest to take a second look at your resume as you ready it for a new year of job hunting. In addition, begin buttressing your portfolio. “Experts say you need a few resumes ready to go, depending on the different kinds of jobs you are seeking -- and all of them should be tweaked for the specific position as you send them out. There is no such thing as a universal cover letter. Each one must be tailored to the job. If appropriate, consider a video resume.”
(3) Remember: Those Who Cannot Work, Volunteer
Giving back this holiday season is an easy way to get out of the house, get in the holiday spirit, while also making great connections in your community. According to WalletPop, “There is always someone in worse shape than you and being able to help them will make you feel better. Why not form your own job support network? Just post a free ad on any number of local blog sites…and hold the meeting at the Starbucks. Go around the table and let everyone introduce themselves and say what kind of work they are seeking. Reminding yourself that you aren't alone in this recession helps.”
(4) Avoid Spending What You Don’t Have
Following news of a Black Friday full of frenzied shopping that capped a November of encouraging economic numbers, you might be tempted to join the millions of Americans regularly returning to malls, stores and outlets this holiday season. This temptation to get back into our old consumer habits of excessive seasonal spending may come at a cost when you have little income coming in. Remember, the quickest way to post-holiday regret is not being able to pay for the holiday you had….conversely, sometimes the best present is a little bit of pre-holiday perspective.
(5) Make Your Resolutions Early
Whether you’ve been thinking about taking a class or seeing someone about the feelings you’re experiencing following a job loss, there’s no time like the present to be proactive and begin planning for the New Year now. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to ask for help: resolve to reach out to those not only who you can assist, but who can assist you during this tough time.
Speaking of asking for help… a qualified bankruptcy attorney with an excellent record and resources helpful to navigating this recent economic recession can also assist you through your uncertain employment future. The bankruptcy experts at the Law Offices of John T. Orcutt offer a totally FREE debt consultation and now, more than ever, it’s time to take them up on their offer. Just call toll free to 1-888-234-4181, or during the off hours, you can make your own appointment right online at www.billsbills.com. Simply click on the yellow “FREE Consultation Now” button.