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After five months of unemployment this week marked my return to the work force.  Judging by the title you might be wondering to yourself “Funemployment?”  On a show last September entitled “You Know When It is Time”  marked the closing of a wonderful but often stressful chapter in my life as an educational consultant.  It ended on October 23, 2013 and when I was let go the feeling that was felt was relief as I felt the weight of the stress from my job being lifted from my shoulders.  Don’t get me wrong I was scared to death as I had no idea what was going to happen next but I was past my expiration date with the company.  I thank them for the thirteen years I had the opportunity to travel this wonderful country and see as well as meet people I never would have ever encountered in my lifetime.  I have been in 45 out of 50 states, learned presentation skills and further enhanced my knowledge in educational curriculum.

I did start looking for work right away but I knew it would take some time so why not enjoy the time that I will have while not working.  Many people stress during unemployment and I have blogged about this earlier but since returning to work I felt I should do it again.  It was wonderful getting back into life at home instead of out of a suitcase but what I loved most was when my girlfriends from my side business Thirty One termed it Funemployment.  This word was immediately embraced because before leaving my job a lot of my friends and family really didn’t like being around me.  I was stressed, complaining as well as just unpleasant to be around.  I didn’t even begin to realize how much negative energy was bouncing off of me.  How could this be?  I was doing Inspirational Wednesday, smiled and laughed when appropriate, exercised 5-6 times a week to alleviate the stress and was desperately trying to balance work/life with an ever changing schedule.

In reality I realize I had been masking once again and once I entered unemployment the mask had been stripped away and it was the beginning of a new chapter in my life.  When I was let go I remember them telling me on the phone that this was a difficult time.  My response should have been the first indicator that the mask was being shredded because my response was, “No it is a time of opportunity!”

That is exactly what it has been.  My family had season tickets to our NBA Basketball team and I think I only made it to one game while I was working but now I have been to several games, reconnected with friends and I notice I am getting invited to functions a lot more.  My disposition has changed for the positive and even I can see the difference in my videos for Inspirational Wednesday post unemployment.

If you find yourself unemployed view it as a temporary situation but also you might have to step outside of your comfort zone while looking for work.  When I applied for the current position I now hold I never would have thought I would have interest in this profession but I am surprising myself after the first week that this was the right career path for me to pursue.  It allows me to also pursue other interests as well and the opportunities for growth are expansive.

Enjoy this time if you are unemployed.  It is a time for you to discover hidden talents, rest, and figure out some of the endless opportunities that may come your way during this journey.  You might have to take a step backward to move two steps forward but you too can enjoy and make the most of your “unemployment”.