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Ep96: Making Sense of the Unemployment + Small Business Loans Train Wreck | Community Q&A


As the COVID-19 global pandemic plods along one day at a time, I and the Optimizer coaching & mentorship community have been monitoring the latest developments as they pertain to freelancer unemployment as well as applying for small business loans (via the EIDL and PPP loan programs). And let’s just say that so far…things are a train wreck.

Very little of what we’ve been promised thus far by the CARES Act has actually come to fruition (at least as of recording this episode), and in this community Q&A episode we talk through some of the finer details, we examine the challenges that all of us are having getting any assistance whatsoever, and then we dive back into some productivity strategies to keep us (somewhat) productive despite the world throwing every distraction at us that we can possibly handle and more.

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Here’s What You’ll Learn:

First, we check in with our Optimizers on how they’re doing with obtaining their stimulus checks & other financial assistance. Here are some of the topics covered:

  • Is now a good time to start a business? With over $350 billion in loans & grants available in the U.S. stimulus bill, people want to know.
  • Does anyone really know what’s going on with unemployment? We take a dive into the state we know the most about, California which recently released information.
  • When can we expect our additional $600/wk in unemployment benefits if we’re already receiving benefits?
  • What is this new “Pandemic Unemployment Assistance” website for freelancers and others who aren’t represented on the standard unemployment website form?
  • What if I was already receiving unemployment benefits and they’re almost used up? Are they extending it and will I get the additional $600/wk?
  • What happened to the $10,000 grant?
  • What is the SBA disaster (EIDL) loan and what has changed?
  • Can we apply for and get EIDL grant and Paycheck Protection Program and unemployment?

Next, we check in with Debby Germino on how she’s doing with her One Thing – writing (see last week’s Community Q&A episode).

  • On prioritizing our time: Why does it seem like we have all this time on our hands and we’re still not doing what we want to get done with it?
  • How can we adapt our productivity strategies like time blocking when our schedule can get “blown up” at any time?
  • Don’t miss the amazing “laser coaching” session with Debby at INSERTTIMESTAMP.

Useful Resources Mentioned:

Surviving Freelancer Unemployment: How to Manage Your Budget For the ‘Gig Economy’ (Global Pandemic Edition)

Surviving Freelancer Unemployment: Making Sense of the CARES Act, EIDL, PPP, and UI…And Getting Your FREE $10k (if you qualify)

Ep93: How to Organize & Prepare Your Finances As a Freelancer | Community Q&A

Ep94: [CASE STUDY] How to Identify Your “One Thing” and Accomplish It Every Day | Community Q&A

Ep91: How To Reduce Anxiety and Take Back Control During COVID-19 | Community Q&A

The Mindful Editor | It’s Okay If You’re Not Ready to Be Productive

Our Generous Sponsors:

This episode is made possible for you by Ergodriven, the makers of the Topo Mat, my #1 recommendation for anyone who stands at their workstation. The Topo is super comfortable, an awesome conversation starter, and it’s also scientifically proven to help you move more throughout the day which helps reduce discomfort and also increase your focus and productivity. Click here to learn more and get your Topo Mat.

Show Credits:

This episode was edited by Curtis Fritsch, and the show notes were prepared and published by Glen McNiel.

The original music in the opening and closing of the show is courtesy of Joe Trapanese (who is quite possibly one of the most talented composers on the face of the planet).

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Note: I believe in 100% transparency, so please note that I receive a small commission if you purchase products from some of the links on this page (at no additional cost to you). Your support is what helps keep this program alive. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Zack Arnold (ACE) is an award-winning Hollywood film editor (Cobra Kai, Empire, Burn Notice, Unsolved, Glee), a documentary director, father of 2, and the creator of the Optimize Yourself program. He helps ambitious creative professionals and entrepreneurs DO better and BE better. “Doing” better means learning how to more effectively manage your time, your energy, and your creativity so you can produce higher quality work in less time (and ultimately become a productivity ninja). “Being” better means doing all of the above while still prioritizing the most important people, things, and passions in your life…all without sacrificing your health (or sanity) in the process. Click to download Zack’s “Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Your Creativity (And Avoiding Burnout).”