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by SixFigureStart | January 21, 2009

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When I was laid off in the fall of 2007, I was living in Philadelphia and realized that, single and jobless, I could alter my life in radical ways. And so I thought about joining the Peace Corps. Much to the consternation of my family and friends, I nearly did it--except that it takes 6 months to a year to get accepted and placed. Instead, I ended up in the wilds of New York City and studying the savages at Vault (love you guys!).

Anyway, you don't have to go all out by pledging 2.5 years of service to the Peace Corps, but when you've got time on your hands and gaps on your resume to fill, why not volunteer? There are tons of non-profits that would welcome the help, and soup kitchens overflowing with the recession impacted. Being productive and helpful can go a long way to boosting your feelings of self-worth and satisfaction while undergoing your own struggles, and that in turn can rebound into extra confidence and strength to help you land your next job.

Another bonus: By volunteering, you can explore and develop interests you didn't have time for while holding down a full time job, and that can lead you to a whole new profession, city, and lifestyle.

Has this happened to you? We'd love to hear your story, so go ahead and comment below.

--Posted by Linda Petock, Vault News & Commentary

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