By: Joanne Cavis, UGA Cooperative Extension
High unemployment rates continue to be a problem locally, across Georgia and the nation. Jobs are hard to find. Going back to work for your former employer may not be possible. Finding a job doing the same kind of work you have always done may not be an option either. So what are you to do? Perhaps the time has come to try something different.
Consider the possibilities. You do have options.
- Simplify your lifestyle. Many couples find ways to live comfortably on one income instead of two. When one parent stays home you save on child care expenses. Maybe you can live with one vehicle instead of two for additional savings.
- Can’t make ends meet with just one spouse working? Look for ways to supplement your income. Consider mowing grass, babysitting for friends, walking dogs, cleaning homes or businesses, or taking a part-time job. Using the extra money to pay down debt can make it easier to survive on one income.
- Look for different work than you did before. You may need to develop new skills to compete for local jobs. Changing occupations often means starting at the bottom of the pay scale, too.
- Return to school. Education pays, and financial aid is often available – especially for trades and professions with shortages of qualified workers. Check with the Georgia Department of Labor career center, one-stop-shop or vocational rehab office about opportunities.
- Start your own business. New businesses open every day. More than two-thirds of all new businesses start out as very small operations out of the owner’s home with no additional employees.
Recovering from unemployment is not easy. Once you get to the other side – and you will – you may discover the current crisis turned out to be a blessing in disguise. However, you will never know until you try.
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