Contemplating My Eighth Month of Unemployment

by an Unemployed White Male on December 14, 2009

in Business & Economy,My Life,Recession 2009

As my unemployment stretches into its eighth month on this coming Christmas Eve, I’m finding myself reflecting more upon my current situation and the promise of future employment. Regarding the former, the greatest danger for me, and I would suggest for most all unemployed people, is the curse of idleness. Providentially, my interests are broad, both professionally and casually. I’ve had the opportunity to refresh and reinforce my web design and management skills by revisiting my CSS skills and learning new things like WordPress. I also enjoy reading and writing, and have been using this time to write even more, as this blog and others display. Thankfully, and generally, I can keep myself busy and useful learning new things and exercising my creativity.

Conversely, visiting the subject of future employment prospects, things take a different turn. In eight months I have had not a single response to a resume. I remember several years ago when unemployed, after leaving a job by my own volition, sending anywhere from five to a dozen resumes each week and having at least one interview a week. It’s not like that at all today. Actually about four months into my unemployment, I discovered that I was having not a lick of success and simply gave up looking. Only recently have I returned to seeking employment on a regular basis. But, because jobs are so few, I need only look once or twice a week.

This is quite discouraging and leads to some dismal emotional and psychological expressions. The worst of these is the hopelessness informed by desperation. I’m not taking about some ontological or spiritual hopelessness since I have my faith in Christ. Rather, I speak of vocational hopelessness: now in my eighth month of unemployment, I can’t see myself ever getting a meaningful job. Certainly, I could flip burgers at Wendy’s or stock shelves at Walmart, but this is not a fit that provides intellectual, emotional, and vocational substance for me.

While I have plenty to occupy myself with these days, the prospect and belief that work will come to me has become useless and fleeting. And this is a troubling thing.

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