I’ve been tossing around the idea of going back to school. Not because I really want to go back to school but because I have been unemployed for a year now and am starting to feel some pressure.
Although I’m glad that I have devoted the last 9 months to personal growth it has not really helped me out in the job arena. I’m now able to redirect my thoughts better and to stay in the present better and I know where all of my chakras are located but none of this has helped me to find a job. Plus I have not really added anything to my resume in the last year. So… that has got me debating the whole back to school thing.
The field of marketing has lost some of it’s shine. I’m at the point in my life where marketing for a corporation who’s sole purpose is making money is not that appealing any more. I don’t dislike marketing, I just am not married to the idea of staying in that field.
Perhaps I should just change course and do something completely different. I could take programming again although I’ve been there, done that and did not enjoy the actual work. School was fine and I did great at school but the work in the real world was not optimal and I wasn’t having any fun doing it. I’m not sure if it was just an unlucky position and I should give it another chance or if I should just abandon the whole field altogether. The thing is that there are loads of jobs in programming, so that makes the decision trickier.
I’ve also tossed around the idea of taking a trade. Yep, going to trade school and working with my hands.
Sitting in front of a computer for a living is slowly killing us. For the past 7 years I have gradually put on weight as I have gone from an active stay-at-home Mom to sitting at a computer for over 8 hours/ day. I have taken off a little weight in this past year but my lifestyle still involves a computer and it still involves sitting while using it. It’s probably been even worse during this last year as now I’m slouching over it while using it on my couch instead of at a desk.
So does this mean I’m going back to school? No idea, but I’m thinking out loud as I cross another week of unemployment off of my calendar.
I’ve been unemployed for 10 months now and I think I’m finally getting the hang of it. This time off has been an opportunity for me. An opportunity to explore new things, to take time for myself and to re-evaluate where I’m going in life. So without further ado, here are the
Benefits of Being Unemployed:
- The gift of time.
One of the things about not working 8+ hours/day is that you have a lot more free time to do other things. Of course, searching for work takes up some time but you can’t spend 40 hours/week doing that soul-sucking task or you would end up in a fetal position on the floor.
- Less stress.
I’m sure that several of you are looking confused at this one. Let me clarify, some days are pretty damn stressful, when you wonder why no one is hiring you after multiple interviews, that can be pretty stressing. But I haven’t been feeling that every day. For the most part I have been enjoying the lack of work-related stress. No deadlines to meet, no lack of communication, no problems with co-workers… you get the idea. Plus, when the kids get home, the evening rush of homework and activities is a lot less rushed and a lot less stressful.
- Better health.
I have lost 14 pounds during the last 8 months. It has not been due to dieting. It has been due to eating better, less stress, more exercise and an increased focus on self-care.
- An opportunity to try new things.
During this period of unemployment I have embraced blogging, tried meditating, learned about chakras and life energy, completed some small challenges, reached out to friends new and old, and signed up for a writing course. Plus, I learned a lot about happiness, positivity and gratitude, started playing badminton, and spent some time volunteering.
- Did some things I did not previously have time for.
I’ve done a lot of reading, purged some stuff, organized a get-together, scrapbooked, did more yoga, taught my youngest how to ride her bike, planted a flower garden and a few vegetables, went on some day-trips, did a little dating, and watched too much TV.
- Explored options for my future.
This time off has given me an opportunity to assess where I am in life and where I want to go. It did not happen quickly but after some soul-searching I have become a lot more serious about writing a book. I think I needed to go through certain steps to get to this point but I am excited about writing and I want to see what I can do in this field.
- Improved a friendship.
I have this friend who I liked but we didn’t hang out that much. We both got laid off together and it was a bonding experience. She is one of my biggest cheerleaders in the whole blogging adventure and job search process. I really appreciate her support and I ❤ her. Thanks Regan!!
- Made new friends.
Blogging has put me in touch with some people I never would have connected with before. I like that I have readers and I like reading other people’s blogs. Plus the writing course has added more people to my life. I’ve only been there a short time but they seem like a super supportive bunch and I am excited to get to know them better.
I know that these are my benefits, but if you’re unemployed you can make some of them yours too. Don’t spend all of your time feeling sorry for yourself. Put yourself out there, take risks and do something that you’ve always wanted to do but never had the time for. Of course, don’t give up the job search but keeping busy with things you like will help you keep a positive attitude and that will help in the big scheme of things.