5 Positive Ways To Handle A Work Suspension

Not many work suspensions bring the national attention that Steelers' quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s did at the start of the 2010 season. Even as Big Ben was being suspended from work more players were losing their jobs altogether as the team made mandatory roster cuts before the regular season began. In a sense these football players are going through the same employment challenges that many millions more are going through, as many working people have been laid off or had their work terminated all together during the last two years.

If you find yourself in a position where your income is temporarily reduced because of a job loss or suspension from work, think about using your time in a manner that will sustain or improve your overall financial position and career aspects. Here are a few examples.

1. Increase your home's value.
There are many articles from real estate pros that say curb appeal is one of the driving factors behind the overall value of your home. The best part of enhancing your home's worth is that it doesn't have to cost much money at all. If you have been suspended from work, spend some of this time cleaning, painting, patching, trimming, or planting. During a work suspension, your sweat equity could payoff in a larger home value useful for refinancing or selling purposes.

2. Exercise and clean up your diet.
It is very easy to slip into bad habits when your work routine is taken away from you, and this includes how you are taking care of your physical health. Use this time to clean up your diet and start exercising. Any exercise you want to do is fine. You can do it at the park, gym, or your own living room. A healthier lifestyle will give you the energy you need to give your all to a job search or getting back to work stronger than before. Additionally, many studies have demonstrated that a healthier appearance gives you an edge when interviewing for a new job.

3. Upgrade your work skills.
A primary reason people struggle to find new work or get promoted is because they lack skills that are currently in demand. Why not take either credit or non-credit classes at your community college during your time off from work? There are many different topics, they are inexpensive, and they could give you the ability to command a larger salary in the work force. Another option would be to use this time to obtain a certification or license that would allow you to command a higher salary in your chosen industry.


4. Polish your online presence.
Never mind that your resume says you are great; employers want to see the "real you". The you that you present to the rest of the world. Keep in mind that nearly 40% of employers admit they check you out online prior to making a hiring decision, and that number is growing. If you have been suspended from work, use this time to clean up your online presence. Make sure your posts on Twitter and Facebook are something you wouldn't mind an employer looking at. Pay particular attention to your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is a powerful forum that offers many tools that allow you to promote yourself in the workplace.

5. Use your trade to earn on your own.
If you were a baker at a grocery store, how about baking and selling goods on your own at farmers markets? Were you a carpenter for a contractor? How about working independently for home owners? Can you paint rooms, create websites, babysit, do someone's taxes, teach night classes, or fix someone's plumbing? How can you leverage your previous employment skills into income for yourself until your suspension from work is over.

If you simply don't have time for any of these suggestions and need a job RIGHT NOW, check out these 10 resources that can help get you a job by tomorrow afternoon.

More Resources On Work Suspensions
1. Facts about work suspensions.
2. Legal limits on unpaid work suspensions.
3. What is a work suspension?)
4. Work suspension for exempt vs. non-exempt employees.
5. What's the difference between a work suspension and being fired?

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The Quarter Roll is published to provide personal insights and opinions on everyday ways of saving and managing money, budgeting, and reducing debt. The Quarter Roll does not give professional accounting, legal, or investing counsel. The ideas, examples, and advice presented on this site are solely the opinion of the authors based on his or her personal experiences. All photos courtesy of The Quarter Roll, iStockphoto, or Dreamstime. © All rights reserved.