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Long-term Unemployment Hard On Confidence

Janice Pratt came here in the 1980s for the booming local economy, but now the city’s unemployment rate is 9 percent. She hasn’t had steady work since 2008 when she lost her job with a tech company after a lengthy marketing career.

Pratt fears the mere fact that she is unemployed is hurting her chances of landing a job, both because employers don’t want to hire the jobless and because she’s losing her confidence.

“With every interview I can usually rev myself up pretty good, but now, I’m a nervous wreck usually,” Pratt said in an interview (during which she was all poise and no nerves).

She doesn’t tell her friends when she lands an interview to soften the letdown if she doesn’t get the job. “My husband will be the only one I’ll tell. It’s too embarrassing,” she said. “If I blow it, then it’s just me and my husband, and I’ll get over it.”

Lost confidence is a major problem for the roughly 5 million Americans facing long-term unemployment. The government has encouraged state and local officials to set up “job clubs” where peer-to-peer support and grief counseling help jobseekers overcome the anxiety of joblessness. (New Jersey recently launched a statewide job clubs initiative.)…

via Long-term Unemployment Diminishes Job Seeker Confidence.

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