by Scott Milnes
Of the many things that affect the quality of our relationships, I can think of few more systemic than our work. In our culture, it’s not just what we do—work is practically our identity.
Seriously, think back to the last time you met someone new. I bet it didn’t take more than a minute for them to ask, “So, what do you do?”
A career that matches our innate strengths, talents and gifts is a blessing. It makes us feel that we are truly in alignment and that our lives have a deeper purpose.
Within the scope of my relationship coaching practice, I often speak about the importance of work/life balance. One thing’s for sure, when things are not going well at work, stress will inevitably spill over into our home life.
I can remember a time in my own life, before I became self-employed, when I was working for a local company. I dreaded going to work every day.
I would drag myself out of bed, crawl into the shower, eat a quick breakfast, and then drudgingly drive to work. In truth—that job was a bad match for me. I was so far away from what I was supposed to be doing that I could have never found happiness and fulfillment there.
And guess what? All that stress and discontent came crashing into the relationship with my then-fiancé. I couldn’t seem to help it. Work sucked and I was Mr. Grumpy.
But as bad as it was, at least I had a job. I had something to do five days a week. And I had a paycheck.
So, let’s stop here and ask: Just how much worse is it to be unemployed and without an income? My friends, it’s a lot worse.
When experienced men and women find themselves suddenly unemployed, naturally they experience a host of emotions: anger, fear, and anxiety are a few that readily come to mind. But often these emotions are replaced by a sense of hope, a trust in their capabilities, and a belief that they have something of value to bring to the workplace.
They also feel that they are still worthy of gainful employment. “Yes!”, they proclaim to themselves, “I can do this.”
But in today’s market, a person who not too long ago would find themselves shaking hands with a new boss in a matter of weeks now endures months, sometimes years, of desperate job seeking. One resume after another. No callbacks. No interviews. No income.
If we think having a “bad” job adversely affects our relationships, I can assure you that having no job is exponentially more damaging.
We’ve all heard the saying, “No finances = no romances” but the truth is, when a family depends on two breadwinners to survive, this is a problem much more serious than just not having money for date night. We’re talking serious economic hardship—the type that can eventually destroy families.
Where You Are Is Not Where You Are Staying
If you’re suffering from long-term unemployment, let me just say that you’re not alone. I know that reassurance doesn’t help pay the bills, but take heart. It helps to understand that when many people (in this case, millions) are affected by a crisis, there’s more attention given to it.
And here’s some great news: Operation Boomerang is a fast growing nonprofit organization that helps the jobless age 45 and over navigate this confusing chapter of life and assist them in finding meaningful employment.
As a proud supporter of this social mission, I offer coaching services to OpBoom participants. What I admire so much about Operation Boomerang is their passion for helping this population of hurting people. It truly is their desire that all the long-term unemployed could answer proudly when asked, “So, what do you do?”
Operation Boomerang is on a mission to help unemployed workers make a comeback. And the mission has just begun.
Stand with me and support the work Operation Boomerang is doing to help the long-term unemployed.
Scott Milnes is a relationship expert and life coach. Creator of the Circle of Love™ Coaching Program, he specializes in helping people “get from where they are to where they want to be.” Find out more about Scott by visiting www.scottmilnes.com.