Resume & Career Advice

June 7, 2010

Reinventing Yourself During the Recession

Losing a job is relatively a more difficult experience for someone who has been employed almost all his life. Recessions do not distinguish among people and, unfortunately, even the person with the highest credentials may be left jobless just as easily as any other else. But if there’s one good thing about economic crisis, it’s the fact that people learn to think of innovative and great ways to deal with the negative consequences. Learn how one of our writers coped with unemployment by totally reinventing herself. Below is her narrative.

Here I am, writing Web copy and immersing myself in the intricacies of keywords and Search Engine Optimization – all without pay while my work is evaluated by a lady young enough to be my daughter. Unlike some of my well-meaning friends who were aghast at this turn of events caused by our economic crisis, I see this as a step towards self-reinvention, not demotion.

I continue to send online resumes during my off-hours. Evenings, I still make time to network with former bosses and colleagues to get job leads and promote that I’m once again out on the market. But this half-day internship in this start-up online magazine actually helps me learn the latest trends about online media. Doing them hands-on by myself polishes my skills. An education in itself, it’s something I would have relegated to my staff in my old job as editor-in-chief of a now defunct business newspaper.

This non-paying stint is my first big break in months. Constant rejections after three months of steadfast application have been discouraging. To remove the stress, I’d swap notes and share leads with other unemployed friends. I’d go to the public library and bone up on the latest resume-writing techniques and job interview tips. To relax, I borrow and read books, since my depleted savings and welfare checks have forced me to cancel my gym membership and cable TV. Another inexpensive way I use to cope with stress is jogging around the block every morning.

The internship also has removed my bouts of unemployment depression and given me hope. Once the economy rebounds, my new online abilities combined with my editorial management experience will give me stronger leverage in my next job interview. My resume will show that, while others were lounging at home, I was actually doing something productive in-between jobs!

This testimonial and in a certain degree, a success story, emphasizes the need to reinvent one’s self during a crisis to keep focus on certain career goals. It is truly noteworthy that a person caught in a bind by difficult circumstances must not give up and throw in the towel. As all other endeavors we could possibly face, it is best to look for ways to take negative things in a positive light.

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