The Covid-19 pandemic has devastated the Canadian labour market. According to Statistics Canada more than three million jobs were lost in March and April alone due to the economic shutdown. For those affected by job loss the impact goes beyond the statistics, and with all the uncertainty around us being out of work can be very scary. The usual recommendations for when you have lost your job are no longer totally relevant today but here are some tips that will help you to deal with a sudden job loss during the pandemic.
1. Understand the emotional toll that job loss is taking on you. When you lose your job you lose your personal work relationships, daily structures and your self of self-purpose causing you to feel the same stresses which come with other forms of loss. Asking "why me" does not have an answer any more because we have no control over a global pandemic. You can expect to have feelings of anger, sadness and denial but it is important to try to cope and live with your new circumstances. Look up free online programs and counselling that can help you deal with these mental health issues. It is important to find some benefit out of your loss, so think about reinventing yourself maybe by taking some business classes on-line to help you in your job search.
2. Review your finances and spending, not having enough cash to pay the bills is a major stress for everyone. Financial experts recommend having an emergency fund with three to six months of expenses in it but for many people this is not possible. What you can do is track your spending to see where your money is going. If you need money to buy groceries make sure that you are aware of all the financial and economic support available from the government. You may also need to withdraw from your RRSP or TFSA to tide you over. For those with no savings it is important to work on restructuring your debts contact your credit card provider or mortgage lender for assistance and think about using an unused line of credit with a lower interest rate to pay off credit cards with a much higher rate of interest.
3. Look for future employment, it is important to boost your LinkedIn profile, update your resume and network as much as you can. Being adaptable to change might be your best asset at this time. Think about expanding your skills into areas that are in demand or are going to be in demand in the future. For older workers experience is their best asset so think about offering your assistance to smaller companies that need help but can't afford a full time employee.
From an article by Ethan Rotberg
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