Offer some advice?

Hello all
How have some of the unemployed designers coped so far? I've been unemployed for over 3 months now and its not getting any easier. Its a sort of catch 22 situation keeping up to date with new programs and finding ways to better myself so that I am more employable but, living on jobseekers is not easy. Anyone else had a similar experience? How did you made yourself more employable without breaking the bank?
If anyone has some tips that would be great :)
I'd work towards building up a damned good portfolio. As an employer, that's pretty much 80% of what I'd be interested in.