Best of Times or Worst of Times

“Whether it’s the best of times or the worst
of times, it’s the only time we’ve got.” – Art Buchwald

Calgary’s unemployment rate reached 7.9% in
February, the highest it has been in 20 years. For many workers in Calgary,
these are the worst of times. Many have moved to other cities where the
unemployment rate is lower and many are still looking for that elusive job in
Calgary. How does one stay healthy when they are not working, but working hard
at finding that next job? Some friends and I put our heads together and came up
with this list. Although there is some overlap, they are categorized into two
groups: practical supports and spiritual supports.

Practical supports:
·      Evaluate and eliminate excessive debt – it may
be time to downsize your home or get rid of that collector car
·      Track your finances – determine where your
money goes
·      Don’t be afraid to find professional counseling
– a counselor will have good advice on how to stay emotionally healthy
·      Stay connected through networking –
friendships, former colleagues, the guy at that coffee-shop close to your
former job
·      Have some fun – find a way to continue to
pursue your hobbies
·      Keep a daily routine – get up at the same time
every day, eat three meals a day
·      Create a job search plan – then work that plan
·      Volunteer: 
help others while helping yourself
·      Exercise – for fun or for competition, stay

Spiritual supports:
Daily Bible reading – it should
go without saying but it does not
Daily prayer – again, it should
go without saying, but it does not
Weekly longer prayer time –
pray daily but then find those longer times once a week
Weekly prayer partner – pray
with someone else
Monthly prayer partner who is
outside of your regular networks of people – someone with whom you can be
really honest
Monthly coach/spiritual
director conversation
Annual or twice per year
solitude retreat
Meditate upon Bible passages
Meditate upon nature
Read in theology
Read practical leadership
Read the news
Read popular literature and
popular culture material
Look for mystery and wonder in
·      Expect miracles

I would love to have
someone write and tell me what their experience has been in following some or
all of these ideas. Best of times, or worst of times, right now is the only
time we have.

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