How I Kept Myself From the Unemployment Rut
After my last day at the insurance office, I wanted to crawl into a Niki-sized hole and stay there forever feeling sorry for myself.
Things did not work out how I had planned.
After a week, taunting thoughts of self-pity were invading my normally glass-half-full mind. I would have thoroughly enjoyed wallowing in thoughts like "I am a lazy piece of shit and unworthy of any employer" for a long time.
Blah blah blah.
But I've rolled my eyes at myself. It would be much harder to pick up my broken pieces after burying them chin deep in guilt. When life doesn't seem fair, I try to remember that I have a choice to give it a good kick in the ass back.
With much-needed confidence and hope, I give you 11 ideas that kept me from the depths of my couch during my unemployment.
- Even though I wanted to take up Amateur Hermit as my next occupation, I surrounded myself with my closest friends. I let them lift me up even when it was easier to stay put in my sadness.
- I made sure to have more than enough fun for the first couple of days, doing whatever the heck I wanted just for myself. I turned floundering circumstances into a weekend-long party, making sure I knew I was still worth celebrating.
- I remained productive in ways I actually cared about. I found it difficult to care about someone else's insurance paperwork in someone else's cubicle all day. But, when I did something challenging for myself, I felt productive in a new and addictive way.
- I used my new spare time to tie off loose ends that were renting space in my brain for too long; everything from reorganizing my finances to catching up on housework. I find it a lot easier to see the next clear path in front of me without the to-do list in the way.
- I caught up with old friends and family members. There were people who I genuinely missed spending time with, but time was slipping away from me and so were they. It was an amazing way to fill many moments with positive energy, and a good reminder of my roots.
- I cleaned the heck out of my apartment. I straightened every minuscule thing out of place to my sanity's great relief.
- I regained my motivation to purge through boxes of clutter. If I have the strength to get rid of something as huge as a job, then I can certainly toss that over-sized coffee mug covered in balloon stickers and know I'll be just fine.
- I made plans to do something awesome just because I can. The next day Cleveland warmed up, Alonzo (my SUV) and I had a date at a beautiful beach an hour west of here. While there are several closer beaches, the mini road trip allowed me to do something unnecessarily fun without needing a reason. This reminded me that I can be more than ordinary and certainly more than the limits put on me by others. I can do so much more for myself without needing any other reason than to be happy.
- I didn't let myself worry about money more than I needed to. It is what it is, and stressing out about it does not have a good success rate in the Positive Solutions department.
- I started mindfully "unplugging" as much as possible. I avoided my cell phone and any clocks when I could so that I could practice living freely without a parasitic side of anxiety around.
- I chilled myself out all the way around. Being miserable at my job made me irritable, and this affected the ones closest to me too often. I made a decision to lose all of the nasty habits I gained along with the office gig, immediately.