Laid-Off Workers Making the Most of Their Time

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mban1696lIn today’s economic situation, it’s best to be prepared for anything, so I’ve definitely thought about what I would do if I got laid off. How would I survive? Would I fall into a deep depression? Move home with my parents? Start a new job search right away? Or, sometimes I wonder if I would just live it up, stay positive and take advantage of my free time.

Apparently, that’s what most people are doing, according to  a new CareerBuilder survey of more than 1,800 laid off workers. Despite the hardships that jobless people face today, the survey finds that these workers are focusing on the positive aspects of being in between jobs.

“While finding a new job and steady paycheck is definitely top of mind, laid off workers are also concentrating on activities that will help them grow personally and professionally,” said Rosemary Haefner, Vice President of Human Resources at CareerBuilder. “They are reconnecting with friends and family, getting involved in the community, taking classes and exploring new career path options that may lead to a greater return in the long run.”

Twenty-two percent of laid-off workers reported that they are spending more time with family and friends as they look for new employment opportunities. Other ways laid off workers said they are making the best of a difficult situation include:

  • 15 percent are fixing up their homes
  • 14 percent are exercising more
  • 11 percent are finally taking time to relax
  • 8 percent are volunteering
  • 7 percent are going back to school
  • 6 percent are becoming more involved in their church community
  • 4 percent are starting their own business
  • 4 percent are taking up new hobbies
  • 3 percent are traveling

To survive without a steady paycheck, 23 percent of laid off workers reported they are collecting unemployment or other financial aid while another 20 percent are cutting back on spending outside of necessity. Other means they are using to manage budgets include:

  • 16 percent are relying on savings
  • 12 percent said their spouse or significant other is supporting the household
  • 6 percent sold some of their belongings
  • 5 percent are taking odd jobs here and there
  • 4 percent are living on credit
  • 3 percent moved back home or added a roommate

What are you doing in your time between jobs?

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