Take it in stride – What to do when you get laid off

get laid off

Whether it is something you’ve been expected or a true surprise, one of the most stressful things that can happen in life is to lose your job. Your world will be turned upside down and it is easy to find yourself panicking. What is going to be next for you and your family? After leaving the HR office, what can you do to find the next job?

There are a number of steps you can take to change a mindset from despair to opportunity if you have the chance to fully think through what has happened when you are let go.

Turbo put together a recent infographic which shows a number of both emotional and career based avenues to go by when faced with job loss. The advice listed here is practical as well as personal and allows for a step-by-step process.

Step 1: The mourning period

Give yourself a chance to grieve for the loss of a job without thinking it is weakness or negativity. This IS a difficult time. It is okay for life to be unfair. Take the time you need to feel sadness or anger before jumping into the next step.

Step 2: Emotional Support

It may be tempting to cut oneself off from support structures out of shame of losing a job, but this is actually what your friends and family are here for. They want to support you in a time of need. Don’t feel the urge to lie about job loss, or cut people out of your worldparticularly work friends who could help you find a new job. In addition, this might be a good time to take up an exercise regimen or diet you haven’t tried. Yoga or meditation are also great for coping. Making sure you are active will keep you from wallowing in self-pity or denial.

Step 3: Get Organized

This means first assessing your finances. If you have debt, what can be done to stabilize it while you are out of work? Are you eligible for unemployment benefits? Then, check in on work documents like your resume, cover letter and LinkedIn profile. There are services available that will help you polish these documents to make sure they are in the best possible shape for your next employment.

Step 4: Get Out There  

Applying for jobs can be disheartening, but by creating goals for yourself (i.e. 4 applications a day) you can feel good about your accomplishments. Are you in a place where a skills related class might help you score a better job than you previously had? Look around for continuing education or online certification classes that will allow you to put a new credit on your resume. Even if you just START a class, you can add that skill to your CV as something you are actively training to do.  

Step 5: Stay Proactive

If your initial progress is slow, consider using a recruiter. Based on what job you are looking for, they might be able to help you in your career path. In addition, if you are not finding full time employment right away, think about taking on some part time or gig work. Depending on your skill set, remote work might even be an option. This could lead to full time employment, and also give you avenues to people and skills you might not otherwise have been exposed to.

The most important thing to remember is that your being laid off is not representative of a personal failure, it is an opportunity to move on to the next stage in your career. Who knows, your best life may be yet to come. Have a plan in place for this and you will be able to weather any storm, even when you are a little lost at sea.

Please include attribution to https://turbo.intuit.com with this graphic.

How to Bounce Back After You Get Laid Off