You’re not alone. Current studies of people who are out of work show that a sense of isolation is very common. People report less contact with friends and former coworkers. Work plays such a large role in our lives, not only financially but also socially, that job loss presents a real threat to our emotional wellbeing. As a result, the unemployed become more withdrawn over time. In reality, we are responsible for creating that sense of isolation by not reaching out. It is important to recognize this threat and work on maintaining social connections. Friends are a wonderful source of emotional support.
Another way to guard against social isolation is to join a support group for people who are unemployed. Local faith communities and civic organizations are a frequent source. These groups often invite guess speakers who offer helpful information on a variety of topics. Members help each other by sharing personal experiences. If a group does not exist in your community, try starting one. Lots of organizations will gladly offer space for you to meet. We think you’d be surprised how well such an effort is received. Let us know if you belong to such a group and how it formed.
Today, the Internet provides lots of ways to stay connected though social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Social networking makes it easy to stay in touch. It also provides the ability to share job leads and other important information.