If you are funemployed, you are probably smiling!
For funemployment, unemployment is a happy place and a new way of thinking that work/life balance overrides work as the “be all end all.”
In funemployment, folks can enjoy their new status guilt-free.
If you search LinkedIn, many people use the terms funemployment or funemployed as their entire LinkedIn headline. They strive to embrace a new lifestyle with the freedom of choice and time on their side, and they can even sleep in!
The funemployed can have the time to focus on school, family life, travel, golf, relaxation, mental health, writing a book, reading, volunteering, starting a business, engaging in a side hustle, or whatever is FUN to them!
Individuals may even consider taking a lower-paying or part-time job because they want to or perhaps for the flexibility. They can decide if they will live to work or work to live or not work and avoid the rat race.
Funemployment can lead to the silver lining in a cloud for some, as long as there is financial security and people are not panicking about paying their bills. Severance pay is music to their ears.
Typically, “un” means “not” and may have negative connotations. Adding the letter “f” changes the context, makes it more positive, and provides a humorous play on words.
Not everyone will appreciate the humor, however, as people who are unemployed or long-term unemployed may not even know how to pay for their next meal.
They may not have an inheritance, savings, or any family support. Their unemployment checks may have ended, so the joking nature is like rubbing salt in the wound.
However, according to Psychology Today, humor can help to reduce stress. It might also be more pleasant than saying, “I’m on the dole.”
The happily jobless might have been downsized, laid off, furloughed, lured by a buyout, or may have even voluntarily quit to join The Great Resignation. If you need to know the difference in some of these terms, read my comments in Furloughed vs. Laid Off: What’s The Difference and How to Handle It.
Aside from their LinkedIn headline proclamation, there is evidence of funemployment with public photos and images in social media posts. There are Facebook groups where people share their nomadic lives and sometimes feckless activities and couch surfing.
People may move around in an RV or by some other means, and they may or may not include comments about their ability to work remotely, along with pictures of many places they visit that might be on YOUR bucket list.
If you are wondering if funemployment is a new TikTok trend, it is not. It’s a term that has been around since the 1800s, believe it or not.
That first instance in the 1800s is speculated to be a typo, but the term became more prevalent during the recession of 2009 with an article published by the Los Angeles Times.
Those who use funemployed as the one word in their LinkedIn headline, know the consequences and that you will leave a digital footprint.
Linkedin is a database, and people find others by key titles and keywords. It’s also essential to add your unique selling proposition (USP) in the headline. Make sure you read the tip for boosting your headline score too!
So, if you are funemployed, I hope you enjoy living each day as you please, though I do not recommend making that your LinkedIn headline! (wink, wink)
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Lynne M. Williams is the Executive Director of the Great Careers Groups, a volunteer-run 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides career education and networking connections for 1) job seekers in career transition, including veterans, and 2) employed and self-employed for career management. She is also the President of ChemPharma.net and runs a Clubhouse session on Fridays at 11 AM ET in the Thought Leadership Branding Club.
Aside from writing keyword-focused content for ATS resumes and LinkedIn profiles, Lynne is currently writing her doctoral dissertation on LinkedIn for Job Seekers. She is a contributing author on “Applying to Positions” in Find Your Fit: A Practical Guide to Landing the Job You Love along with the late Dick Bolles, the author of What Color is Your Parachute?, and is also a speaker on career topics.