by Craig Erwin, Ph.D.
I MUST ADD HEADINGS AND LINKS TO MY OTHER POSTS
I have a good friend who lost his job a year ago. Since then he has worked feverishly to find another job. He has applied for thousands of jobs, had dozens of interviews, but still has not received an offer even though he is bright and very talented and has plenty of work experience. I feel terrible about his plight and I know many others are in similar situations. I have been lucky enough to have never been laid off or fired. Fortunately I have always chosen to seek a new job rather than having to find a new job because I lost my old one. My friend told me how demoralizing and costly it is to lose a job. Everything depends on your job; your self-esteem, your health insurance, your retirement savings plan, your social network.
If you have a job you like, consider yourself lucky. Even if you are not crazy about your job, consider yourself lucky if you have a job that pays the bills, provides health insurance, and offers a pension or retirement savings plan. The USA has a lousy safety net. If you lose your job, you don’t get a lot of help. You can collect unemployment for a while, but it doesn’t last forever. Some western European countries not only prevent employers from laying off or firing employees; they also provide very generous benefits (sometimes for years) should you have a baby or lose your job.