Seven Ways to Stay in the Game When You're Unemployed

unemploymentSome states have seen their unemployment numbers dip. Not California. Its unemployment rate is at an all-time high at 12.4 pecent, making it harder for the unemployed to feel optimistic. But, thanks to federal on-the-job training programs and local work source centers, there is a ray of light.

"I really thought I would retire there, so it was a huge blow to be let go," said Debbie Gazzola of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. Losing her job as an office administrator after 26 years was bad enough, but Gazzola also lives in the Inland Empire, an area in Southern California hit hard by the recession.

Luckily, her local unemployment center, the San Bernadino Employment Resource Center, is well-suited to the task, and Gazzola took full advantage by signing up for classes in resume writing, mock-interviewing and updating her computer skills.

For Malena Castillo, a non-profit counselor who also lives in the Inland Empire, a new career was her way out. Luckily, her local resource center was one of 2,300 federally-funded Workforce Investment Boards for on-the-job training across the country. This program reimburses employers who hire the jobless for a period of time; after eight months of training, Castillo was hired full-time.


Resources are available

These are just a few examples of the resources available. Check with your local unemployment office to see what they offer. As Gazzola and Castillo point out, the hardest thing about being unemployed is finding the will to get out of bed and feel upbeat.

Here are seven tips that will help YOU stay in the game:

1. Don't sit at home. Face the reality of your situation and get out and network. As Gazzola said, "Don't sit around and mope. By isolating yourself, you'll only get depressed and miss opportunities."

2. Approach job searching as if it were your job. Make the most of this time in your life to improve your capabilities and learn new skills. " I never realized how much your body language, the way you speak and present yourself from the beginning, even simple tips like sit more on the edge of the chair, cross your ankles and not your knees -- all of that really makes a difference in an interview," Gazzola said.

3. Visit your local county's unemployment website for resources available to you.

4. Sit down with a counselor and make a day-to-day plan to improve your skills and find a job.

5. Take full advantage of the workshops offered at the Employment Resource Centers, which include resume preparation, interview techniques, business plans and basic computer skills. " I took Excel and Power Point classes because I never needed them on my last job; and now I'm prepared," says Gazzola.

6. Consider a new career or industry. If you have been laid off since Jan. 1, 2008, you may qualify for on-the-job training programs that will help you develop skills to enter a new career. "I hated being on government assistance and took it personally," Castillo said. Now, she has a new start in sales.

7. Join networking and community groups. You never know when a referral or hot tip will land in your lap. "Thanks to these counselors and friends I've made, I've gone from feeling anxiety to feeling confident," Gazzola said.

Next: Secret Weapons and Underused Resources for Your Career Arsenal

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Ginny

My heart goes out to you. You may have to leave the country to get a decent job. Someone I know had to move to Hong Kong because of her husband's job. She has been offered three jobs in in the month she has been there.

October 25 2010 at 7:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
tony

I certainly hope none of you people here shop at wal mart.

October 25 2010 at 3:22 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jonker569

Before anyone talk trash about past, current and future admins and blaim the world for his or her own failure, please do your best to provide solutions at the same time.

October 25 2010 at 1:24 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
cj

I'm 64, have a BA in accounting but no one is hiring someone that is almost ready to go onto Social Security. We are over the hill, but are dependable, hard working, and willing to work any hours just to make ends meet. I would give anything for a job. I have tried temp work but as soon as you get them caught up there's the door. I'm still a viable person with lots of experience to offer but no one wants a grandma. I was told to just take my SS and enjoy the rest of my life. I don't want to quit working. I enjoy working so why don't people understand this.

October 25 2010 at 1:08 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Regina

Do not give up and trust God to provide your needs I was unemployed for 17 months and On Monday I start a part time job as a two year old teacher in a pre-school.Regina From Bakersfield

October 25 2010 at 12:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Regina's comment
cj

I have been unemployed for over 3 years and even the temp jobs don't work out. I'm glad you have found a job. I just hope and pray that I'll be able to say that I'm employed.

October 25 2010 at 1:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
J

With 12.4 percent unemployment now and all those unemployed, benefits-sucking losers of course voting to legalize pot, wait until you see what the state will look like after they legalize it. I predict 33% unemployment within five years and breakdown in basic services unless they come to their senses.

October 25 2010 at 12:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
tucson az

hey i am ready for Obama's shovel ready programs ha ha , hell I will even shovel the shit

October 24 2010 at 10:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
guy

Duh gubmint goin' gimme' duh monee I'z wunts. I goin' gits sum 22's an' uh bompin' stereeoh an' gits me sum ho's wit duh res' uh duh monee Obammy goin' gimme' I ain't goin' hang 'roun no gubmint un'ploymint office-d'ey kin jus' brang mah chik tuh mee.

October 24 2010 at 10:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to guy's comment
atviflav

You're trying too hard. 'Dey akchully spel lik dis' without periods, commas, etc. The sad part this is usually white kids on forums and when you try to correct them they reply with "Dis da interwebz not skool lol, I can rite how I want." This is an actual quote from one of those kids /facepalm.

October 25 2010 at 10:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
n

THIS IF *&^%$# WIA IS OUT OF MONEY IN MY STATE. I LIVE IN THE THIRD OR SECOND, NOT SURE, WEALTHIEST STATE IN THE NATION. I HAVE BEEN WORKING OVER 30 YEARS AND HAVE SENT COUNTLESS RESUMES, ATTENDED CLASSES, NETWORKED AND EVERYTIME I CALL TO SEE IF THERE IS FUNDING, IT IS ALWAYS "CALL BACK IN TWO WEEKS, THERE IS NO MORE MONEY". I WOULD BE HAPPY TO GO BACK TO SCHOOL, COMPLETELY CHANGE IF THE FUNDING WAS AVAILABLE. INSTEAD I AM TRYING TO RAISE THE MONEY ON MY OWN. THERE IS NOT TONS AND TONS OF MONEY OUT THERE FOR SCHOOL, JUST SOME AND LESS IF YOU HAVE A DEGREE ALREADY LIKE ME. AN OLD DEGREE THAT IS NOT USEABLE. WHAT THEY DON'T GET IS THERE ARE PEOPLE COMPLETELY ON THEIR OWN, NO PARENTS,STRUGGLING TO KEEP THEIR DILAPIDATED HOUSE AND DRIVING A 17 YEAR OLD CAR. YES I QUALIFIED FOR FAFSA BUT IT DOES NOT COVER EVERYTHING. FAFSA IS USELESS AT ANYTHING BUT A PUBLIC SCHOOL BECAUSE THE PRIVATE ONES HERE WANT THOUSANDS MORE. I WAS ALL SET TO GO TO NURSING SCHOOL AND AT THE LAST SECND THEY SLAPPED WITH A $9000 BILL. THEY TOLD ME TO APPLY FOR ANOTHER LOAN AND AT ONE THEY RECOMMENDED. OBVIOUSLY A VESTED INTEREST. I TRIED OTHER SCHOOLS AND THE HOURS ARE HORRENDOUS AND THEY ALSO RECOMMEND YOU DO NOT WORK? IF I COULD GET AWAY WITH NOT WORKING WHY THE HELL WOULD I BOTHER WITH SCHOOL? WHAT THEY DONT GET IS YOU CANNOT GET A LOAN WHEN YOU ARE UNEMPLOYED AND I SURE AS HELL AM NOT GOING TO PUT UP MY HOME AS COLLATERAL. I HAVE EVEN APPLIED AT FAST FOOD PLACES, DEPARTMENT STORES, DONT HAVE A PROBLEM WORKING ANY PLACE BUT AS SOON AS THEY SEE YOUR AGE, YOU ARE PASSED OVER. I DONT SMOKE, I AM MATURE, A GOOD WORKER AND DO NOT HAVE TATOOS AND I HAVE BEEN WORKING FOR THIRTY YEARS. I AM ANGRY, I AM GOING TO GET RETRAINED AND WORK NO MATTER WHAT BUT I AM MAD. THANKS NALIA FOR LETTING ME POST THIS.

October 24 2010 at 9:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
betty

They are telling us unemployment is down. I was told by a person at the unemployment office the stats only show the current week for applications. They don't count all the people that are still unemployed after searching for viable employment a year or longer.

October 24 2010 at 8:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to betty's comment
Scrrew the teabagger

This is the same old crap that people spew out every time they run articles like this. I am so sick of seeing "network" and "stay busy". Why not say something like this: "We live in a nation where you the unemployed have been screwed. Join forces, demand union representation, fire or better yet, "lay off" every Republican you can find, quit sending jobs oversees and bring jobs back to America. Oh, that would be too hard wouldn't it. Oh well, let me just stay busy, on and really network at the unemployment office. This crap from useless bottom feeders drives me crazy. America, you have been screwed by corporate America and billion dollar CEOs. They owe us.

October 24 2010 at 11:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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