Lay-offs, retrenchments, liquidations and other dreadful words to this effect are today’s buzzwords. This book endeavours to motivate those unfortunate people in a down-to-earth, practical way to overcome the trauma of sudden unemployment and take the entrepreneurial way forward. Based on Christian principles, it illustrates how to “build a rope ladder” – with “materials” at hand – to free you from the dark, black hole of unemployment.
INTRODUCTION: THE ROPE LADDER
After losing my job, I found myself at the bottom of a dark, black well. God reached out to me, a sorrowful bundle of despair and I saw His two arms as two ropes. My eyes were opened to all the God-given resources around me – assets I could use as rungs for a rope ladder to escape this hole of misery. Each following chapter deals with a rung.
RUNG 1: YOU
As God’s creation you are unique – purpose-built, equipped with distinctive talents, abilities and gifts. Do you know what they are? This chapter will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses, how to optimise the former and deal with the latter.
RUNG 2: YOUR FAITH
With “real life” illustrations of God’s helping hand, this chapter aims to reinforce (and re-establish) faith in the almighty God. It also leads the reader to (re-)discover a day-to-day relationship with God.
RUNG 3: YOUR ATTITUDE
My attitude to my circumstances very often dictates my actions as well as the end result. The reader is led to see how attitudes can change circumstances and, conversely, how attitudes can sometimes prevent you from reaching your potential or obtaining your goals.
RUNG 4: YOUR SPOUSE
The impact of unemployment on the reader’s spouse and the potential harm it can bring to a marriage are highlighted in this chapter with suggestions to keep the marriage on the right track. A letter to the reader’s spouse (which can be given to the spouse to read) is included in this chapter. The letter explains the emotions, fears and everyday-conflicts the unemployed person faces and what support the spouse can give.
RUNG 5: YOUR HOUSEHOLD
Demands of modern day life with peer pressures, particularly, on teenagers, can devastate a family if not heeded. Practical hints and ideas are presented on how to break the news to the family, getting the family involved in tackling the setback and how to steer the family to safe ground.
RUNG 6: YOUR FRIENDS
A short passage to demonstrate the role that friends play in your life – “friends” who will abandon you, but also those gems that will support you during your troubled times.
RUNG 7: YOUR COMMUNITY
Your community is an untapped treasure. This chapter briefly illustrates what an important role the community can play during troubled times. A few suggestions on how to engage with your community are outlined.
RUNG 8: YOUR PLANNING
Without using too much theoretical (academic) jargon, the reader is introduced to simple planning techniques. These guidelines are applicable not only to a business environment, but particularly to bring order into an upside-down life again.
RUNG 9: YOUR TIME
Time is an inevitable requisite for planning and for this reason the reader is alerted to pitfalls and other threats that should be taken note of in order to prevent unnecessary wasting of time.
RUNG 10: YOUR MONEY
Practical hints are given about financial matters, both for personal and business purposes.
CONCLUSION: YOUR’E OUT… NOW WHAT?
Although the reader has managed to get out of the depths of that gloomy, dark hole, he has to realise that he is now standing on the first step of a new episode in his life. Brand new challenges lie ahead. The reader is given an inkling of what to expect from suppliers, friends, life, mood swings and many more.
EPILOGUE: ELVES AND DIESEL ENGINES
Unemployment, You and God’s Rescue Ladder concludes with a final inspirational account of the hardships, disappointments and ultimate victory of an army platoon during training.