Too old, or too expensive?

This next topic has taken a fair amount of time to work through because the research available has been a bit overwhelming and finding the best way to be inclusive of it all has proven time consuming. The best approach will be to break it down into smaller parts and introduce topics and studies as they are applicable.
After announcing this blog and the goal of helping others understand how to work through being unemployed, and the application processes for unemployment as well as healthcare, but that it should also cover some of the more personal side of being unemployed.
One of the areas that was mentioned was ageism. This is not always an easy topic to discuss but it is prevalent in many industries and in two ways: employees being viewed as too old and therefore too expensive, or not enough experience to be paid at the employees’ expected level.
I personally cannot speak to being let go due to age, but have met with many that have found themselves in that position and discussed what so…

Healthcare: navigating the marketplace and paying

Healthcare in the USA has been a big topic of conversation over the last few years, and rightfully so. While the debate on how the healthcare system should be run could be discussed at length, this will not be that forum. The focus for this post is getting an understanding of how you can pay for healthcare when your income has been decreased.
When you lose employment, most of the time your previous employer no longer pays your premiums. What happens is the employer notifies your insurance company that you are no longer employed by them and they will no longer be paying your premiums.
The insurer then sends you paperwork that lets you know they are aware your previous employer is no longer paying your benefits and if you’d like to continue coverage that you will be able to pay for your insurance yourself. This option is available through COBRA.
COBRA was an act brought about in the 80’s to allow those losing their benefits and their employment the option to keep benefits if they pay thems…

Not just underemployed: New recipes

Working through the emotions and coping with being unemployed has been difficult, and I imagine I am not the only one that feels that way. One thing that has always helped me has been a creative outlet. Cooking and baking have been a positive way to express myself and my love for others so I have embraced it.
There have been a few recipes that have helped me get my groove back in the kitchen and the next step is to share them with those that may also enjoy them.
The first is Kung Pao chicken. I came across this in the blog emails from MyFitnessPal and it was a hit. My person was a huge fan since he loves spicy foods and it was good for me because it incorporated healthier options than normal, like a vegetable he didn’t hate.
The sweetness from the honey and the extra spice from the chili paste perfectly blended with the toasty flavor from the sesame oil. It’s definitely going to be made again.
Another first for me was scary sounding and intriguing at the same time. I made a face when lo…

Unemployment: Knowing what you need to apply

Mentally preparing yourself for the stigma of unemployment and also preparing for potential re-positioning can be a bit
overwhelming. Adding to that filing for unemployment for the first time can be daunting. The best way to overcome
daunting experiences is to be well prepared going into the scenario.

The most important aspect of applying for unemployment benefits is ensuring you are eligible to receive them. You can
verify this directly on your state’s application site, but you can also check if you are eligible to receive unemployment
benefits prior to applying. will tell you the general requirements that should be met in advance so you can prepare and have all the
materials you need prior to submitting your application. Here is a quick overview:

Have your social security number handy.Know the contact information for your most recent employer, most importantly the person that will be confirming your unemployment status with your state’s department.Make sure you know how…

Networking: events and re-positioning yourself

Since the impact of the title unemployed hits immediately, its important to work on incorporating ways to demonstrate your skills somewhere other than your resume and LinkedIn profile. I’d like to point out that those are still important tools, but won’t be able to make up the whole picture of “you”. Best way to demonstrate that is to start networking and putting yourself out there.
It can be hard to determine which networking events are the best to attend. While it is important to put yourself out there, you want to make sure any and all events best serve your needs. It’s come to my attention that not all networking events are created equally.
If you live in the Philadelphia area, there are a few groups that hold events where you can address skills you’d like to work on in a safe environment with others that also find themselves underemployed.
Philadelphia Area Great Careers Group events are held in Philadelphia, King of Prussia, Exton, Wayne, Penn State Great Valley, and more. What is …

Coping the loss: Effects of the first week

Not everyone has experienced the loss of a job. For some, I can imagine that it is the hardest thing they have experienced. It can lead to a small spiral and reassessment of what they will do with their life and how to cope with becoming something they do not fully understand yet - unemployed.
When we are employed, there is often this idea that when we encounter a person that doesn’t meet that description they are somewhat less. According to a study completed by UCLA in April of 2011, this stigma of being unemployed hits a person within a few days of losing their jobs.
In the study, interviewees with similar resumes and work experience were considered for roles, the only difference being one was currently employed and the other had recently lost their jobs.
UCLA researchers showed that employment status of an interviewee made up about five percent of the total consideration given to candidates. So those that are unemployed could potentially be at a five percent disadvantage compared to th…