Economic downturn and recession presents hardships to many around the world; with no jobs to pay for their mortgages or support their current lifestyles frustration and loss of working towards a goal can bring down self-esteem. And what is troubling is that for some months it would be harder to find a job because there are very few around. Putting in the whole day and night in applying for jobs and networking and still not getting results could be frustrating and depressing but if you work towards a well managed schedule balancing job search, personal / professional development and some family fun time, the hard times can be thriving and fruitful to you.

Now, I am no financial guru and as a career coach do not offer personal finance management advice, but here are some ideas that I would like to share to help you sustain through the hard times if you have been in a layoff recently and searching for some solutions on how to revive your career or just have a decent income to sustain through these times.

Here are the 5 essential tips that can guide you to success post-layoff:


Have a Goal – Rather TWO

It is important to have a goal in mind, both long term and short term. Your short-term goals must be a goal for every week or every day.. strive to achieve something everyday and you will find yourself getting up from the bed happy and energized to start a new day to achieve something .. your every day achievement may seem small at first but slowly builds on to something that you can be proud of. And these are the times when you need it the most- something you can pat yourself on your back and not be let down by the layoffs or financial tensions in the family. A positive and energized mind and body can only bring in positive results.
Your long-term goals must be on how to get back into the workplace or if you entrepreneurship is something that you are looking for in future. For that break down your long-term goals into tasks that you must work on every week or month – it could be on personal / professional development and growth working towards your goals and feeling proud of yourself. Get that self-worth back and it is only possible by careful skills assessment, planning on self-development and a good time management.


Be Practical

Of course you want a job right away but if there are slim chances of getting one right now you better start looking in other directions of making money but keeping your long-term goal in mind. Even the best made plans and goals can fall short if they are not practical.

Here are some tips to be aware of when planning for a change of career or getting back on the career track:

  • Do not have unrealistic goals or deadlines. Do not set your expectations sky high; it is good to climb the hill step by step.
  • Don’t just keep sending your resume online to 100 different companies daily and wait for a reply.
  • Have patience, your goals might not see results immediately, maintain faith but also check on their viability by discussing with others in the family or like-minded friends.
  • Take a break – constant worrying and working over something may lead to similar results and fatigue. To avoid burnout take breaks and just relax and laugh with your family when you find time and when they need you. A vacation is not a solution to feeling good also when you are in a financially pressed situation, just taking a break and going out for dinner and movie with the family or hanging out with your kids can be a great stress-reliever.
  • Hone your networking skills – landing a job is more about networking the right way then spending hours on the computer reading and applying online. Get out there – meet people who can help.


Get Organized

It might take a few days to get back to working on your own, but it pays a lot to be organized and work peacefully when you need it the most. Inform family of your plans when you prefer not to be disturbed and plan your working schedule accordingly to concentrate on your job search or goals. Get rid of distractions and focus on the short term goals.

You might find these tips helpful: 5 Steps to Manage your Time after a Layoff


Diversify and Analyze your Skills

Diversify during the recession. Learn to manage your career during recession but always be aware and ready to move on when required. Work towards a planned job search process and don’t hesitate to consult professionals when looking for a new job or during the career discover process. It is also the time to look at your skill set and see which transferable skills that you have now can be applicable towards your future job or career. Some good tips on transferable skills are here on the USC website. You can add on to your skills base with online courses and degrees, iwu online offers many online programs and also financial aid assistance to those who qualify.

Planning a career change – these tips might help: 5 Fundamental Career Change Tips for Working Professionals and the Unemployed


Manage Your Finances

The layoff hits hard when you are the sole earning member of the family. With a mortgage to pay and kids to take care of things can be very tough now.

Some tips that can help you pay the bills:

  • Analyze together with your family on current expenses and find areas where you can cut back. Money saved is money earned.
  • Give up your credit card – allocate weekly funds for running the family expenses and learn to live within the means.
  • A garage sale might not be all the a good idea when most people are cutting back on buying anyways, don’t waste energy on small things think about how you and your spouse can earn supplemental income by working part time.
  • Rent a part of your house if you can; even a small rent can help you in some ways.
  • File for unemployment if you have not already done so. Even small different money streams together can relieve a lot of financial tension. Discuss with your family and friends on how they can help or advice well.
  • Learn from your mistakes; if you had not saved enough emergency funds for the rainy days, make it a point that you would not when you have enough.

Some good tips on 10 Things to do with your Money Right Now were on TIME website. Good articles and advice is what you should be reading in your spare time, to inspire and act mindfully when your mind is not at its positive best.

And know that this too will pass by, it’s how you react and act now determines how smoothly you can take on the bumps on your career path.


Any tips that you can share that helps during this transition stage?