Strategies for making unemployment work for you

To make unemployment work for you, as distinct from against you, you also need to recognize opportunities and options.

This isn't just mouthwash, or more mealy-mouthed motivational claptrap.

It's a fact, you can do quite well out of the whole lousy condition of unemployment, if you can figure out the right moves.

There are always opportunities. You have the time, as an unemployed person, to go looking for them. You may find that they're better than the jobs you've been going for, and much more like what you really want.

If you're a online gamer, you'll recognize the process.

  • Learn the rules, and the objective of the game
  • Figure out the moves and the scoring
  • Observe other players, their strengths and mistakes
  • Become an expert at beating the game, developing your own strategies

Like a game, there's always a few moves available. The best move is usually the one with definite results:


  • If you can get paid training, in any field, grab it. You're getting paid to acquire more skills.
  • Government or agency training is valuable, and accredited. If it's available, check it out.
  • Internships, paid, are a bit more difficult, but if they're in your field, you're in with a good shot at getting them.
  • Apprenticeships, if you can get them, are real achievements. The pay may not be brilliant at apprentice level, but at tradesman level it's excellent.
  • Freelance/own business- If you can work freelance in your own business, you've got the problem licked, eventually. It takes a while to set up your business, but you'll be thanking whatever you believe in forever after for the extra independence.
  • Qualifications, either your existing ones, or those you can get easily, can lead to instant work. There's usually a shortage of skills in all industries. A bit of research can find them, too, and quickly. If you see a demand for people in one particular part of your own field, how hard is it to do the extra qualifications? Usually, not very.
  • Other work you can do for yourself, and sell. Anything you can turn into a commercial proposition, from odd jobs to multinational consultancies, is good business, when you're calling the shots.
  • Casual work is a good possible lead to other work. Sometimes it pays better, too. This is an expedient way around the money problems you can use any time, under any circumstances.
  • Contract work, which is now freely available on the net, globally, is a very good potential source of income and CV material for other jobs. You may find you don't need a job, in the traditional sense, if you're getting enough work.

The joy of beating unemployment comes with a few extras:

  • You'll never be at such a disadvantage again.
  • The threat of unemployment is permanently defused, because you now know your way through the minefield.
  • You've created a workspace for yourself, not just been glued on to an employer with a single track business.
  • You've also created a level of independence for yourself, which is utterly priceless.

For everyone, the process of beating unemployment is a bit different.

The principles are basically the same, but you'll need to tailor them to your own skills, needs, and wants.

You're advised to be a bit honest with these ideas, for best results. Your own preferences are the best, most real, and most relevant, motivations.

Check it out with yourself:

  • What's the best result you could wish for?
  • What would you call a real personal victory for yourself?

Use the answers to those questions as your GPS for finding your way to where you want to be.