How to Solve the (Your) Problem of Unemployment

As the next presidential election nears, unemployment will be a topic frequently discussed. Monthly, then weekly reports as to the percentages of workers holding full or part time jobs will become fodder for heated political debates, as each candidate will claim their plan to be the best one to solve the problem of unemployment in America.

Trying to get a jobIs there a real answer to the “jobs” problem, and if so, what is it? Yes, there is, but it’s one you’ll never hear from politicians. It is a mix of new-school and old-school thinking, and the good news is, if you are unemployed or underemployed, by adopting ideas suggested here and by taking the following steps, your days of unemployment will soon end…

1) Realize that the one person with the most control of your destiny is you.

2) Don’t think “Job.” Be creative and think, “How can I generate income?”

3) Realize that your past does not determine your future; that you have more choices now than ever before, and that opportunity is everywhere.

4) If you need money immediately, sell something on Craigslist—it costs nothing to do so. You can even start your own business today on sites like Ebay.

5) Realize that knowledge, ability, skill and ambition are what matter most in today’s marketplace. You can learn how to do just about anything for free online today—except the ambition part.

6) Forget the idea that more college or an advanced degree will guarantee you a job, because it won’t, and don’t think that not having a degree has to hold you back. Great ideas, passion and ambition can well compensate for the lack of any degree. Don’t believe it? Just ask three college drop-outs: Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, how they did it!

7) Prove to an employer you would be valuable to their business. Offer to work for free for 30 days, and make yourself invaluable to the company.

8) Recognize that many others have become successful with fewer advantages than what you have today. If you have your health, you have an advantage. If you speak English, you have an advantage. If you can read, you have an advantage. If you have transportation and a phone, you have an advantage. If you have access to a computer and the internet, you have a huge advantage.

Finally, believe in yourself and take full responsibility for your own destiny. Recognize those advantages, add up your “pluses,” and start from where you are. Never accept the idea that you are a victim of circumstance. Realize the truth so eloquently stated by Viktor Frankl when he said, “Between stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space lies our freedom and power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and freedom.”

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ALIVE Author Series Presents Authors Abigail Bok and Dorothy Hom on TV30's "Conversations."
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