One of the most difficult moments in our professional lives is getting fired. How can I deal with it? What emotions can accompany it and what can I do to restore balance to my life? We offer tips to help you cope with job loss.
Emotions that accompany job loss
We all have our best and worst moments. External factors related to our personal and professional lives have a big impact on our well-being. We rejoice in good news and successes for ourselves and our loved ones, and when bad things happen, we are accompanied by negative emotions. When it comes to losing a job, we experience different, often conflicting feelings. According to Holmes and Rae’s stress scale, getting fired ranks eighth — after the death of a loved one and divorce, among others.
Stress is not the only feeling that accompanies us at this time, and recognizing and labeling emotions helps us maintain our mental balance. Think about how you are feeling. Don’t fight it — sadness, frustration and anger aren’t so bad. Give free rein to your emotions. But what do you do if you can’t handle getting fired and are experiencing it very badly?
The stress of losing your job
Getting fired from your job is a very stressor. No wonder — your life balance is disrupted. How can you restore it?
First of all, remember that stress after losing a job is a feeling that accompanies not only you — it is not alien to every laid-off person. If you’re worried about whether you’ll be able to cope financially because your savings aren’t great, find out if you qualify for benefits after losing your job. You can try to get it, it will give you more peace of mind and time to find a new job.
Chronic stress is not good for mental or physical health — the release of adrenaline, cortisol and noradrenaline leads to higher blood pressure and glucose levels and a faster heart rate.
To reduce feelings of stress, it’s worth building yourself a financial cushion — setting aside money that will allow you to live for at least three months after you’re laid off. When you lose your job, try to cut back on unnecessary expenses.
Nervous Breakdown and Depression
Very often an employer decides to fire an employee not because of his low performance, but for other reasons, such as the need to cut costs during a difficult period for the company. Regardless of what you were fired for, this is an extremely difficult situation. It can lead to a nervous breakdown or depression.
Particularly highly sensitive people react strongly to all stimuli, and slowing down greatly affects their psyche — can even ruin it. A strong sense of hopelessness and lack of purpose and meaning that your work gives you can contribute to serious mental health problems.
If you can’t cope with what just happened to you, seek help from a psychologist or psychiatrist. The former will tell you how to deal with your emotions, and the latter, in justified cases, will suggest pharmacological treatment.
Sometimes the loss of work significantly affects not only the self-esteem of the dismissed person, but also his perception of the world and his future actions. Then correctly conducted therapy will help. Do not be ashamed of your feelings and be honest with yourself — if you feel that reality suppresses you, consult a specialist.
It’s worth remembering that both a nervous breakdown and depression are considered illnesses. And while the latter is more debilitating, both require treatment. If you feel uncomfortable going to the doctor, ask yourself: if you have a 40-degree fever or an acute toothache, would you hesitate to go to a specialist right away, too?
What about getting fired from your job?
Professor Martin Seligman, who has been called the father of positive psychology, notes that it’s worth having an inner monologue and thinking about how you judge yourself when you lose your job. It’s common to feel hopeless after a layoff. How do you deal with that feeling?
Remember: everyone is a valuable person, and so are you. Don’t think you can’t do anything, but pay attention to the opportunities that have just opened up for you. Think about the successes you’ve already achieved: good grades at school, praise from your boss, reasons to be proud of your personal life-even the smallest things that made you feel good about yourself. You can also write down your accomplishments on a piece of paper. Such an action will have a positive effect on your brain: thanks to the release of dopamine your creativity and motivation for further actions will increase.
Remember that sometimes you need the help of a specialist, if you have serious emotional problems or you are depressed after losing your job. Thanks to him you will be able to restore your mental balance. Therapy will make you understand your feelings and restore your shaky self-esteem.
Losing your job: what next?
Even if you may feel hopeless now, in time you will see the opportunities you have gained through the opportunity to find a new job. The reluctance to change means that we don’t always take full advantage of the chance for professional development. Try to see quitting as a positive thing and open yourself up to new experiences. Also remember that failure is completely natural, and don’t blame yourself for the loss.
If you still don’t know what to do under the circumstances, here are the following steps
- you should take:
- Accept the new state of affairs and get used to the emotions;
- Finding help, such as from a therapist;
- Expressing your emotions in a diary or during conversations with loved ones;
- creating an action plan and setting goals;
Looking for a new job.
You can apply for unemployment status and get help from the employment office. This will enable you to receive benefits (as long as you qualify) and benefit from job search assistance and additional support (such as participation in vocational training).
When you leave a job, ask your employer for references and make sure your last days were spent in a good atmosphere. When you hear about the layoff, tell loved ones about it. Make a note of how you feel about it and ask for their support. Let them know that you’ll start looking for a job soon — maybe you’ll find an interesting job recommended by family or friends.
It’s also a good idea to focus on your search. Create a resume and cover letter and apply for offers that interest you, and in the meantime, broaden your horizons. Maybe you’ll start a course or training that a future employer will like.
Is it okay to prepare for quitting?
If you decide to leave your employer, you will have time to prepare for your decision. To some extent, you can also expect to end your employment at the end of your current contract. However, if you lose your job and receive notice from your employer, you cannot prepare for this unless you notice the warning signs beforehand.
You should not live in constant stress, contemplating the indispensability of your job. Do your professional responsibilities diligently, and for peace of mind, build up savings that will allow you to live a few months without your old job.