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  1. The Reality of Being Unemployed at 58 – An Anonymous Unemployment Story

    June 4, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

     I was so glad for the opportunity to publish this article about being unemployed at 58 years old. This is not only a post about the struggles, but an inspiring post about not letting the situation get you down for too long.

    Unemployed at 58

    In 2011 I changed jobs. I left a very stressful, low paying job to better myself and reduce stress. Even though the new job was stressful during the training period, I knew in time the stress would subside. After the first year the stress level did subside and I was enjoying the new challenges. I was doing a good job and my boss was very pleased with my performance. I was given several raises and had worked up to $21.25 an hour within a short time.

    In December of 2012 we were told the company had been sold. My boss who owned the company just turned 78 and it was time for him to sell. No one could blame him for this move. He did his best to ensure everyone would retain their jobs.

    I have since learned that many times in an acquisition employees are told they will not lose their jobs, only for the opposite to happen several months later. This scenario is one that causes emotional turmoil once the employee truly is let go. That is exactly what happened to me.

    It was in the company’s best interest to keep me long enough to make the transition. Instead of being upfront and honest, they were deceitful. The right thing to do would have been to offer a stay on bonus to help with the transition, and a severance package if your position became redundant.

    There was no severance package. I was only given the two weeks pay that was withheld when I started, and the two weeks vacation I had accrued.

    Thus started my experience of being unemployed at age 58. This is not the first time I have been unemployed, but it is much different than being unemployed in my 20’s, 30’s, or even my 40’s.

    First off, at 58 I am tired. I started working when I was 18 years old, and there were many years while raising 3 children by myself that I worked 2 and 3 jobs to keep afloat. I never lacked for a job, with most job changes coming from someone seeking my employment. I live in a small community and know many people.

    Once I was let go, I applied for unemployment and was fortunate enough to get the maximum for 21 weeks. However, I was unfortunate that the Federal Unemployment Extension is no longer available.

    Checking all options I also sought legal advice regarding pains in my neck, arms, and hands that I suspected were caused by 40 years of keyboard work. I have a pending worker’s compensation claim that the company’s insurance is trying to deny. At my own expense I have had an EMG test done that shows I have a pinched nerve and carpal tunnel syndrome. The claim was started in September of 2012 and as of June 2014 I still have no compensation coming in, nor have I been allowed any medical treatment.

    The next issue that presented itself in my new found unemployed state is I no longer have the means to take care of other health issues. Without insurance I cannot afford the cataract surgery I need. Without the surgery my vision is impaired and makes it difficult for me to work in office environments with many fluorescent lights and reports with small fonts.

    The first few months without a job I was in shock. Some days all I could do was sit and cry. I was angry, hurt, scared, and tired. I knew that in a few short months I could find myself without any income and what little savings I had would be gone.

    As I proceeded to search for a new job, I could tell my heart was just not into it. Being in such a small community, the good paying jobs are few and far between. I knew that my past salary was going to be hard to find. When I started seeing jobs I knew I was qualified for, I become distressed when I would see the pay being offered. Are they serious?

    Don’t get me wrong. Most of my working life I barely made enough to get by. That is why I worked 2 and 3 jobs. But at age 58, with 40 years of experience, it is hard to make myself want to work for minimum wage, or barely above.

    So, each day that I faced the reality of being unemployed, my mind was churning and I was becoming depressed. Then I was given a unique gift that changed my whole perspective.

    I was given the gift of 6 sessions with a Life Coach. I didn’t even know what a life coach was, much less what she was suppose to do for me.

    The Life Coach sessions were done by phone, as my Coach lives in Georgia, and I live in Oklahoma. From the very first session I knew this was something that was going to help me through a difficult time.

    With the help of my Life Coach I was able to understand what change, and most certainly chaotic change, does to our bodies and our emotional state. During times of turmoil there is a 4 stage cycle that takes place. She explained to me that we can be like a caterpillar that turns into a butterfly. During the in-between stage it is neither a caterpillar, nor a butterfly. It is just goo. Goo inside a cocoon. The cocoon is a safe place. For us mere humans a cocoon can give us a place to be safe, and to just let go. The place where we can take time to rest, to heal, to re-group.

    The next 3 stages are about dreaming and scheming. This process is one in which we take a good hard look at ourselves, where we have been, what we have experienced, and most importantly, where we want to go.

    During the sessions with my Life Coach I was led through meditation and grounding exercises and was able to actually feel my body relax and start releasing the stress. The aches and pains I had were becoming more bearable. I found myself worrying less and allowing myself to be in my cocoon for a spell. I was giving myself permission to just be.

    One of the most influential sessions I had with my Life Coach was the one that helped me learn about my Social Self versus my Essential Self. With this lesson I became aware of the times in the past that I was excited about my job, and the times that my job caused me to be totally out of sorts.

    I was able to examine my social life in the context of social self versus essential self. This allowed me to accept that through the years I have become less social, and this is OK. I am not the same person at 58 that I was at 38, or even 48.

    In the process of thinking all this through I realized I do not want to go back to work for someone else. Once this realization hit, I had to start thinking about how I am going to eat. For the time being my wonderful son has agreed to live with me and pay the bills. Without his help I would have no choice but to bite the bullet and take a job that may cause me to go against my Essential Self.

    With my son’s help I have been given the opportunity to scheme and dream. In doing so I have moved myself forward toward an answer. I have taken the steps to become a Certified QuickBooks Pro Advisor and am working toward creating my own business.

    Having taken the time to be in my cocoon I am now ready to become the butterfly.

    If you would like to share your unemployment story, please contact me at lady_unemployed@ladyunemployed.com.


  2. Healthy Dose of Reality for College Grads

    May 19, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    For anyone struggling with finding a job after college, this photo is for you. It’s a healthy reality for college grads and one I struggle with (there should be another lane for “unable to find a well-paying, lucrative job”).

    healthy dose of reality for college grads

    Happy “pour-yourself-another-cup-of-coffee” Monday everyone.


  3. Speaking Up At Work – The Fine Art of Getting Ahead

    April 29, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    speaking up at work

    I’ve often blogged about getting ahead at work being a little like merging into bad traffic.

    Well, recently I came to find even MORE proof that getting ahead at work is a little like merging into bad traffic.

    Last week, I met with my bosses to talk about my goals for the company and what I see for my career. I mentioned for the fourth time in six months – yes, fourth – that I would like to learn more about the creative side of the company (specifically writing).

    Finally, my boss followed through and reached out to someone in the creative department and asked them if they would be willing to have me shadow them a couple of days to find out more about what they do.

    And today I spoke with the manager of the creative department and gave him a run down of my modest experience. He actually told me I could start helping out the other writers in the department during downtime.

    Although he has to check with my boss as well as someone in human resources about this, I find myself actually hopeful about my role in this company. I really didn’t think I would get to this point (my disgruntled posts have obviously reflected this) and although it’s one step at a time, I have a lot of hope for what’s ahead.

    The takeaway from this is speaking up at work is extremely important and you must talk about your needs. You may just work for a shit heel company that will ignore your requests, but make sure you are clear and vocal and you must repeat yourself. I had to say my needs to work in the creative department many times. I’m lucky that they DID ask me about my career goals and checked in with me about how things were going, though.

    If you aren’t getting what you want at work, set up a time to speak with your boss and talk about what is missing for you and your career. That way if they ignore you still, you will know for sure this time that it may be time for you to leave.


  4. Careeranista – The Woman’s Guide to Success After College [Review + Giveaway Ends 5/10]

    April 21, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    Careeranista-book-FINAL-v4

    I had the opportunity to read the book Careeranista – The Woman’s Guide to Success After College. I alwys hesitate with books like these because I’m afraid I will read about the things I have heard before or know about already. And I know a lot of my readers are already in the workforce and probably have already gotten their feet wet with job searching, getting laid off, finding a new job, rinse and repeat. But after seeing a few experiences shared by friends I used to know from high school and people I knew from college, I realized how necessary this type of guide was for graduates – or anyone starting out in their career, really – to own.

    And then I heard from a friend of mine from high school, who returned to the states after lengthy travels. I don’t know him well, but I started seeing posts on Facebook from him about job searching, what to do on his resume, how to look for jobs, which companies to apply to, etc. I realized that while this book says the “woman’s guide,” this book could be useful to him.

    I also happened to join the Her Campus Bloggers Network and found myself interacting more with the newly graduated or about-to-be graduated crowd.

    After these two experiences, this became a perfect book to introduce to my readers. And I realized how necessary this guide really was. 

    I think most of us know or interact with people just on the very first steps of their career. These are the people asking the questions like how to job search, interview, adapt to the office environment, navigate office politics. These are important questions I may think you know a lot about, but that doesn’t mean I have all the answers. I think this blog is proof of that.

    Also, this book says “success after college” but even if you don’t have a degree and need help with navigating the job hunt and need help navigating your career, this will be a great guide for you.

    It provides tips for everything from negotiating salary (which I’m awful at and I ended up highlighting many of the tips I found in the book) to what to expect when you start work to working the ins and outs of office politics (an extremely important section for anyone just entering the work force). 

    Overall, this is the best gift you can give a college graduate or anyone wanting to jump start their career. This is a detailed guide that will introduce them to everything you need to know. Even though I’m pretty clear headed in terms of what to expect when going into a job and finding a job, I did learn a few things from this book.

    If you would like to buy your own copy, visit the Careeranista website.

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

     


  5. Getting Overlooked at Work Yet Knowing What You Want

    April 9, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    Today was the second time I’ve been overlooked in my department for a promotion. It bothers me because the person who got the promotion has been here less than three months. I started to stew a bit, but I decided that the best way to let this out is to blog about it.

    I’ve already talked about the type of career I want. I want a writing and social media job. But more than a job, I more envision having something of my own and my own way of making money. Whether it’s making money blogging, freelance writing, managing social networks via freelancing, or something along those lines. Right now I’ve been holding onto this more stable job because it’s financially necessary, but this isn’t something I see for myself long term.

    At the heart of it – I am a writer and I want a career that uses this love.

    In addition to that, I also grown more confident with the fiction I write, too and I am definitely getting better. I’m submitting stories, getting critiqued, and working on actually EDITING these stories.

    I AM growing as a writer. This is something I need to remind myself on days like this. I feel envious at this coworkers advancement, because it’s always nice to get recognition at work for doing a good job, but I don’t want the advancement. Having this type of promotion for me, would add more stress at work, and give me less energy to work on the stuff I really want.

    Do you have a day job that just pays the bills? Have you ever had days like these where you need to remind yourself why you do what you do?


  6. I’m Not Moving Up at Work (And Why)

    March 10, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    Lately at work I seem to be stuck between a rock and a hard place. The rock represents my desire to move up but the hard place represents the fact that I don’t want to move up in my department. The bottom line is – I’m not moving up at work and it’s (partially) my own fault.

    This has resulted in a laborious feeling of continue to try and do a good job yet feeling stuck at the same time. I’ve already expressed to my boss(es) that I don’t want to advance in the career track my role represents, but I don’t want to stay in my current position. I’ve been in this role about a year and a half now and I am not learning anything new nor am I taking on new responsibility. I’m restless and unhappy with what I do.

    What do I want to do instead, though?

    I want to work with social media, blogging, and writing. Tragically, social media jobs right now pay minimum wage (a sign of their value, I think). And the only well paying job that deals with this type of work has a title of “management” slapped to it with the requirement you need five to ten years experience or more (has social media been around ten years by the way?).

    I do look around, but I’m not finding anything. Plus, I’m left with this awful feeling of being disappointed I’m not getting recognized at work and yet hoping I can move on into a better suitable position, more than likely outside of this company.

    And yes, I have told them the areas I want to work in – and it wouldn’t be that far off the company would have work in those three areas – but they stare at me with a blank look like I’ve asked to lick their shoes clean. It obviously won’t happen and I’ve told them twice now the areas I want to move into and how I feel about this current job.

    so, I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place. I know I’m not alone and a lot of people are stuck these days – this blog is proof of that – but I just needed to vent about it.


  7. Should Bankruptcy Wipe Out Student Loans?

    February 20, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    Student loan debt has been in the news recently and is apparently the source of a lot of the nation’s debt crisis. According to an article with Times Union, there is efforts to reduce the interest on student loans to a fixed 4%.

    I can’t remember what my percentage is, but this article made me wonder something….

    Should bankruptcy wipe out student loans?

    I have mixed feelings about this and wanted to ask what people thought. I may have a post to follow in the next few days with some ideas on how to decrease student loans in other ways.

    But first –

    Should we be able to wipe out student loans if we file bankruptcy? Would that help or hurt?

     


  8. Why The Poor Stay Poor (And My 29 Cent Raise)

    July 22, 2013 by Lady Unemployed

    Today my company gave out raises.

    I didn’t have much expectations for what I would receive as my starting salary was low and when that’s the case, I usually assume a company is pretty cheap. Not to mention they didn’t hand out a Christmas bonus, thank you card, or pat on the back of any kind this past winter, so I’d say calling my company cheap is a pretty safe bet.

    Ladies and gentleman…

    I received a 29 cent raise. A 2% raise or so I’m told.

    When the HR Manager told me the amount of increase I received this year, I gritted my teeth, smiled, said okay, and went back to my desk. Alone at my desk, I laughed quietly.

    If there is any chance of decreasing the gap between the rich and the poor, helping college students pay off debt after they graduate, improve the overall likelihood of people buying homes, cars and various non-necessities that seem to keep our economy afloat, I think there needs to be a little bit more handed out than 29 cent raises and 12 to 14 bucks an hour starting wages.

    Or like a friend of mine told me today, I am lucky to have a job. And I am. But some days that isn’t enough.

    Meanwhile, I’m taking the bus home tonight and I’ll be sure to save that extra 29 cents in my piggy bank.

     


  9. What It Means to Fight For What You Want

    June 27, 2013 by Lady Unemployed

    strength

    Lately, I’ve had an eye opening experience about what it means to fight for what you want.

    My oldest brother moved in March to a brand new city – one he has wanted to live for over ten years – and he is trying to make it. The interesting thing is he has opened himself up to trusting people, accepting help, being open to instruction, and trying every route possible to make this new city work.

    He has become an inspiration to what it means to keep your spirits and hope alive no matter what situation is facing you. He has been out of work over a year now, but he continues to keep his spirits up and determination strong. This is so humbling to me.

    I never knew my grandfather, but I remember my mom telling me he spent his whole life saying how he wanted to travel around the United States. He couldn’t wait to retire, because that is what he was going to do. He would travel around America once he retired.

    Well, when he turned 62, he retired. 6 months later he died of cancer.

    What my grandfather has taught me is that you cannot wait for your life to start. You cannot put the things off you want to do for a better day. There will never be a better day.

    What my brother has taught me is that the things that you do want to do in life are never easily attained. If you do want them, you have to want them badly enough and be willing to fight for it.


  10. Make It Happen – A Giveaway (My First!)

    June 25, 2013 by Lady Unemployed

    I’m excited! This is my first giveaway at Lady Unemployed! We’ll see how this goes, but when I saw the opportunity to bring this giveaway to you guys, I thought this was perfect. Read below for the details!

    teleseminarJoin us in this awesome giveaway of
    LIFE/LIFT TELESEMINAR
    this summer!

    Hosted by Parsimonious Pash

    and all of these wonderful bloggers:

    A Life Full of Laughter, Tammie’s Reviews, Giveaways and More, World of My Imagination, Lady Unemployed, Two Girls and Some Coupons, The Deals and More, Our Wolves Den, My Mommy Reads, Fused Life, Oh Snap! Giveaways & Reviews, Guyanesesista, Diva’s POV

    The giveaway will be live from June 26 – July 10th.

    What’s a TELESEMINAR?
    A Teleseminar is a workshop that happens via classes offered over the telephone at an appointed time, and made available later online.

    What’s the MAKE IT HAPPEN process?
    The MAKE IT HAPPEN process is learning how to slow down and create what you want in just Ten Minutes a Day. It is a shift in how you use time that can change your entire life. It’s gentle, simple and remarkably powerful. It brings you back to you, to the things you want to create in your life.

    How will you benefit from the LIFT/LIFT TELESEMINAR?
    First, let me ask – do any of these statements sound familiar?
    “I’m so busy pleasing everybody else, I don’t have time for what I want!”
    “I’m so busy caring for everyone else, I have forgotten what it means to care for me.”
    “My energy is low and even though I have time on my hands, I don’t feel able to get anything accomplished.”
    “I long to go after certain things in my life, but it feels too scary.”
    The LIFE/LIFT TELESEMINAR …
    is a chance for you to pause, hear from yourself and create a new habit of keeping your own needs a priority. You will be lifted out of places you feel stuck and gently propelled forward. All in Ten Minutes a Day!
    The LIFE/LIFT PARTICIPANTS….
    will create a place of complete support and inspiration. In the collectivity of the group, we will be holding each other. In being accountable to the group, we will all be encouraged to stay on track.
    Here’s what you can look forward to:
    24 DAYS – We will spend three days preparing, looking at our lives and listening to ourselves and then three weeks diving into the Life/Lift process. In Ten Minutes a Day, we’ll Make it Happen!
    TELESEMINAR CALLS – There will beTen Minute classes taught over the phone by me, Lorne Holden, and made available later online (in case the phone-in time doesn’t work for you.) These classes will happen five times throughout the course.
    CALL IN SUPPORT OPPORTUNITIES – I will hold three call-in opportunities for people to share questions, joys, challenges, and successes. This is where we can learn from each other and connect.
    PRINTED MATERIALS – You will receive downloadable PDF files of easy to fill-out charts and a 24 DAY LIFE/LIFT CALENDAR. Put a star on every day to mark your accomplishments. Sound like kindergarden? You’re right! Kindergarden is great!
    FACEBOOK GROUP – There will be an invitation only Facebook group where people can share and report in about their experiences with one another.
    DAILY ONE MINUTE LIFE/LIFTS – I will be emailing you One Minute audio files every day of the course – little blasts of daily joy and support to help you in your MAKE IT HAPPEN journey.
    FREQUENT LIFE/LINES – Inspiring quotes to help keep you going in your desired direction.
    FINAL CELEBRATION – I will host a call in celebration where we can report our accomplishments and celebrate one another.
    Register Now – LIFT/LIFT is only open to a limited number of participants.
    Don’t waste any more time. Do it today!
    COST : $240 (Ten Bucks a Day!)
    BONUS! First TEN PEOPLE to register receive a FREE Ten Minute Coaching Session with me, Lorne Holden.
    BONUS! Buddy Up and sign up with a friend and receive a 25% discount off the price of the course.
    BONUS! Sign up as a GROUP OF FIVE and receive a full 50% off the price. That’s right. FIFTY PERCENT!
    If you want to create what you think you can’t, you need a LIFE/LIFT!
    headshotAbout Lorne Holden
    A dynamic speaker, teacher and artist, Lorne Holden is the author of the bestselling book “MAKE IT HAPPEN in Ten Minutes a Day/ The Simple,Lifesaving Method for Getting Things Done.” MAKE IT HAPPEN grew directly out of her experience being a single mother, with a young son at home and no family nearby. She felt she was always struggling to find time for herself and her passions. Then, one day, thanks to the act of planting a single flower, she learned about the power of simple, daily change. This was her LIFE/LIFT moment.
    Lorne Holden now leads speaks and leads seminars on the MAKE IT HAPPEN method, teaches workshops in Successful Self Publishing and continues to write. Originally from Ohio, she graduated with High Honors in English from Middlebury College in Vermont and now lives with her son in New England.

    Good Luck and contact Parsimonious Pash if you have any questions!

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