Unemployment is over 9%. That's pretty high. Thankfully we have jobs and a business, but I know of families where one spouse was unemployed for over one year. Thankfully they are now hired - yeah, They get to eat out :) It was pretty tough to say the least for this family. The husband put in application after application but it took perseverance to get hired. The comments were that he was too qualified or not qualified enough - so which is it and what is a person supposed to do?
What about the people who are older who are unable to work or get retraining or fill in the blank as to why they cannot get hired? What do they do and how do they spend their days?
Pretty challenging but there are activites to get involved in during this difficult time. The unemployed spouse spent LOTS of time working outside building sheds, mowing the grass, feeding the animals, cleaning (and cooking), and anything else to stay busy, also volunteering his time where needed.
This person knew the importance of not letting depression get the best of him - on some days this was a daunting task - but he overcame. He went for long walks to clear his head and to stay healthy. There were days, though that he succumbed and had a headache as he stayed in bed all day. Those were the toughest. The working spouse comes home from working all day to find nothing done - no dinner, dirty house, nothing. The working spouse was pretty ticked! It was also very difficult for the working spouse to understand how the nonworking spouse was feeling.
Meals - well we all know what and what not to eat (thanks to the pyramid) but fruits and veggies are not cheap. In my home we can go through bananas and apples in no time. Of course cookies are not cheap either but a cookie (especially a choclotty chocolate chip one) tastes so much better when stressed than fruit! Of course the fruit will not add to the stress already in place. Yes, eating healthy foods from all food groups with the concentration on wholegrains, fruits & veggies, and meat are going to lead to better eating habits and not add to the stress. Be aware of emotional eating - the nonworking spouse did quite a lot of this and this led to the working spouse eating unhealthy too - not healthy.
Friends - this is kinda tough. People socialize and with the socializing comes spending money. How on earth can people hang with friends who want to spend money going out or invite them over when money is in the negative? This is difficult, but it is important to remember true friends enjoy hanging out just to spend time and not to spend money. Invite people over to play cards, watch a movie, or just to chat and have them bring a dish to eat to share. The host can supply the drinks.
Pray - this is the most important activity to provide all of the above and to stay sane. The unemployed spouse developed a closer relationship with the Lord during this difficult time.
Thankfully this is over now for the above mentioned family, but they learned to be thankful for what they have and not to waste, anything. They also spent more quality time together just sitting and talking - invaluable.
Encourage those around you who may be struggling and share some of what you have and let's not judge someone who is without a job, or even someoen who is homeless because we have no idea how and why they got in that position.