Broke-Ass Financial Coaching: What Would You Do if You Had No Income at All?
â€œWhat would you do if you couldn’t even get a minimum wage job and had no income at all? I’m completely serious. This is happening to tens of thousands of Californians right now. What would you do if you were one of them?â€ – DJTennessee
Dear DJ Tennessee,
Thank you for your questions. I am sorry to hear that you have not been able to find work. I cannot imagine the level of stress that you have experienced. To answer your last question, simply, I would move in with my Mom and Dad. That is no joke.
First of all, in your email, you said “Ok, put your money where your mouth is, Financial Advisor..” (I’m a financial coach, not a financial advisor, please see my bio) Your challenge of “put your money where your mouth is,” would imply that I would bet or put money on the fact that I could help you. Also, it would imply that you would bet or put money on the fact that my advice would not help. If you determine the advice isn’t helpful then you would win the bet. So I will not “put my money where my mouth is,” but I will do my best to help you.
I believe you meant this as a friendly challenge, so why am I addressing this comment in detail? I know it sounds cheesy and cliche, but attitude is extremely important. DJ, I can see that you are looking for new solutions and I commend you for that. Anyone who is trying to prove that they can’t find work or make any income, will be successful. If you have determination and hope then you are giving yourself reasons why you will create and find new solutions. Nate Silver, of www.fivethirtyeight.com, in response to the latest unemployment reports, said, “I think we’ve grown so accustomed to bad news that we’ve forgotten how to recognize good news when we see it; leading indicators have been turning upward for months now.” Although I am as excited to hear his interpretation, beware of tying your individual fate with what is happening to “everyone.” Several years ago when I was looking for a job, someone said to me, â€œThere are thousands of people without jobs, good luck finding one!â€ At first I felt overwhelmed and then I realized, I am not looking for 10,000 jobs, I’m looking for one job!
Use a proven system or framework to find a job. It is tempting to take advice from a friend who just found a job, but just because they got a job does not mean that they have their hand on the pulse of the job hunting world. I would immediately get the latest version of the best Job Hunters book of all time, What color is your parachute? by Richard Bolles. I have recommended this book more than any other book. It is a practical manual, updated every year, that explains specific steps to take to find a job. Get the book, and Email a Career Counselor for FREE! Richard Bolles has also written a new 100 page book called â€œThe Job-Hunters’ Survival Guide: How to Find Hope and Rewarding Work, Even When â€˜There Are No Jobs.’â€ Check it out.
I am sure that since you have been in this holding pattern searching for a job you have made some dramatic changes to your expenses. I mentioned that I would move in with my Mom and Dad, and that I would dive head first into “What color is your parachute?” In addition I would use the tips in this article from MotherEarthNews.com called Live on Less and Love it. The author of this article and his wife had a combined income of $4303.84 in 2005. He shares his 75 ideas to enjoy life more while spending and consuming less. Not all 75 will apply to you, but one could save you thousands of dollars. Some of my favorites include ideas for free rent, scavenging, bartering, haggling, trading, and buying in bulk. Be sure to start with canceling cable television.
Thank you for reaching out for help and for helping many other people by asking these questions because you are not alone.
What do you think? Please post or email firstname.lastname@example.org your comments and questions, and your question may get answered next week!