Matthew Gates 8m 2,054 #unemployment
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
What Will You Do With Your Time During Unemployment?
There are those who have jobs and those who, fortunately or unfortunately, do not. For many of those that do not currently hold a job, there are many reasons they people may be on unemployment including laziness, disability, disciplinary action, dissatisfaction with a job, or being unable to find a job and have legitimately filed for unemployment.
Unemployment is not good for any person, town, state, or country. When someone is unemployed, the individual and their family suffer — bills still need to be paid on time and landlord, mortgage, and utility companies do not care who you are or what you are doing, as long as you pay them the amount you owe them when the bill is due. If you cannot afford to pay, they have no other choice but to shut off all those things you and your family once enjoyed during your employment. The way you and your family once were living comes to an end because you are now scrambling to ensure those bills and rent get paid.
The harsh reality is that a company may not want to lay off their employees, but must in order to survive or continue to thrive. It makes the majority of companies seem heartless. Unable to afford their employees anymore, are not doing enough business to keep paying them, or are simply a business about to go under, especially if they do not reinvent themselves. More often than not most people who are laid off go through a tough situation and process whereby they are stressed, they need to face the reality they are now jobless and must look for another job.
Searching for another job is a journey, as a person will need to toughen up their resume, find their best interview clothes, put on a intelligent face, and be able to pass all the interview questions to match what the company is looking for. If the person gets the job, lucky them, but if they do not: rinse and repeat the whole process.
The unemployed may cruise Craigslist, Monster.com, CareerBuilder.com, and other job websites in order to find what they are looking for. Many people may become stubborn and want to find a job in a particular field, unwilling to settle for anything less, including pay. They face another harsh reality: While some may also get lucky and find a job with similar or more pay, the majority have to settle for less money, and possibly doing something else.
For those who remain unemployed and looking for a job interview after interview, you are not busy; you are never busy; and there is no reason to turn on the television and waste your time. There is no reason to be on the computer, watching YouTube videos or scanning Facebook for nonsense. Your time should be more valuable than that. You now have an extra eight to ten hours a day to do something with your life.
You could go to the gym and work out, get back into shape, or you could work on making yourself more marketable and making all those unfulfilled ideas you had while working an actual reality. The government is temporarily paying you while you are out of work, if you filed for unemployment and successfully received it, so why not fill up your time with productivity?
Here is a list of things you could be doing during the time you are unemployed.
Learn how to interview. If you keep getting interviews, but no jobs, the problem is not your interview; the problem is you. The company that has proposed to interview has already went through dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of resumes and ruled that those people are not a good match. They see something in you and the fact that they called you in for an interview means you stand out.
Up to this point in time, they have already spent plenty of time investing in you. In the actual interview, they are determining whether they should invest more time in you. Ask yourself these questions: What are you wearing to your interview? How is your eye contact? How is your body language? Are you able to answer questions asked to you clearly and confidently?
Learn a new language. If you have looked through the job market, you may have overlooked government jobs or even some of the jobs in the private sector who are looking for translators and people who can speak languages fluently. Many companies are looking for Spanish speakers for Customer Support and Customer Service. If you are looking to get a government job, Korean, Chinese Traditional or Mandarin, Japanese, Arabic, Hebrew, French, German, Portuguese, Russian, Polish, Turkish, Punjabi, Urdu, Italian, and American Sign Language are just several languages you can learn. These do take time but they will add great value to your portfolio, resume, and your life. Many jobs as a translator pay very well, from $18 to $25 an hour or more. Interpreters hired by the government can earn anywhere from $40,000 to $75,000 a year. It may be worth learning a new language, especially if you have an act for them. If you learn it well enough to teach it, you could also become a private tutor, start your own business, and set your own rates.
Learn a Programming Language. There are tons of code websites popping up all over the place to help people learn how to write code. The demand for programmers and coders is only growing each day and many job position remained unfulfilled because not enough people may know the language or there may not be enough people in your area to fill that position. Sites such as CodeAcademy or Team TreeHouse make learning easy and fun. With patience and practice, you can become an advanced to expert coder. While no company really wants to hire someone who has no professional experience, you may start your own business as a freelancer and hit sites such as Fiverr, Elance, Upwork, or Freelancer. Average salary rates for programmers can range anywhere from $35,000 to $100,000 a year, depending on experience.
Run errands. If you have a car or access to public transportation and can get around easily, you may want to consider becoming a TaskRabbit. Signing up to the website is free. Someone needs stuff done and will pay you to do those tasks. For example, someone may need help painting their house, cleaning their house, or a handyman. You name your price and someone may request you to do some work for them. Someone will pay you through TaskRabbit.com and you can earn some extra money that way.
Clean your house. Have you been neglecting your house for the years because of work? Have you accumulated a bunch of stuff in your house? Why not go through your attic, your basement, or all the rooms in your house and start pricing stuff for sale? Whether you choose to have a garage sale or sell it on Ebay or Craigslist, you can earn some extra money.
Visit Senior Citizen Neighborhoods. This has business opportunity potential. If you can drive and are driving a larger vehicle, such as a van or a car that can fit about four to five people, you may want to visit local senior citizens’ neighborhoods and go door to door, asking senior citizens if they need a ride anywhere. You may want to provide proof that you are a valid licensed driver and provide a resume of your previous work in order to build trust. Build a list of senior citizens and days they need a ride or special requests. There are many senior citizens who cannot drive and often call taxis, which are very expensive.
If you can build a solid list of the days that senior citizens need rides, one day you may want to take a group of them to the food store, while another day you may want to take them to the mall. Come up with a fair price that is cheaper than a taxi and charge it to all your potential customers. When it comes to special requests, you can certainly charge a little more to take them to a doctor’s appointment or anywhere they wish to go locally.
If you build enough interest, you may be able to work 5 to 6 days out of the week and make a living. Remember: If you do plan to do something like this, you should be honest, trustworthy, and loyal. Senior citizens are relying on you for rides and may expect you to stay while they are at their appointment. Ensure that you have set rules and contracts for everyone to sign in order to protect yourself.
Become a Tutor. As the saying goes, If you are good at something, never do it for free. If math or science or writing is your strong point, you may want to offer tutoring lessons to people in your neighborhood or offer your services on Craigslist. You may even want to go to the local college in your area, head to the information area, and see if you can add information about your services to the billboard. This will help bring in extra money.
Neighborhood Handyman. If your neighborhood is pummeled by snow, plastered with leaves, or just has neighbors who are always looking to keep their homes clean, you may want to go door to door and offer your services. You should be honest and trustworthy, as your reputation will be on the line.
Neighborhood Animal Walker/Sitter. If you have neighbors who have pets, the chances are that they have always wanted to go on vacation and need someone to keep an eye on their pets or they just do not have time to let the dog out or take the dog for a walk. Why not offer services in animal care? Most places charge a hefty fee per day, but if you have enough animals to care for throughout the day which may keep you busy, you could definitely earn a good wage doing this. While not everyone is going to trust you in their home, you could offer to bring the pets into your home and watch them for the week or longer.
Multitasker. If you are a good writer, graphic designer, web designer, voiceover speaker, or any multitude of services that you can offer, but can’t find a job doing what you love, than list your services on Fiverr.com or similar websites. You may think that you won’t make much and it is not worth it because after all is said and done, you only walk away with about $3.92. However, if you streamline your tasks and get many request per day, you could easily make a living. For example, if you were to get 20 tasks a day, work throughout the day, with the goal of fitting those tasks into an 8 hour shift, you could walk away with $78 per day, equivalent to about $10 an hour, $390 a week, or $1,560 a month.
Still sound like it is not worth it? That $1,560 a month is untaxed, by the way (though if you do make over $600, you will likely have to report it to the IRS). Since the writing of this confession, Fiverr has since added the ability to upsell other services for extra money. You can add your temporary unemployment check in the mix and you have made a pretty good wage. Not only have you made some money, but you have also gained some experience in working for yourself.
These are just some suggestions you could take into account while you are unemployed. Of course, you could turn on the television and fill your brain with useless knowledge, or you could make your unemployment experience one of the most productive times of your life. The decision is up to you. Eventually, the unemployment will run out, and you will be forced to find a job. Why not attempt to get ahead of the game, or make some extra money in order to afford all those things you used to be able to afford while you were employed, even if you don’t have a job? The choice is yours. Unemployment is your time to do what you will with it.