Being forced to leave can be a traumatic event. How do you get over that again? A few career coaches advise.
The consequences of dismissal should not be underestimated. The period prior to your termination of employment is not always harmonious. There may have been conflicts, the atmosphere may have been bad or you felt lonely.
You may have been told that you were not performing adequately, or that there was no more room for your position. And there’s even a chance you’ve faced your supervisor in court. In which case, there probably was no opportunity for a farewell party.
It is therefore not surprising that your self-image has taken a knock. It can be difficult to just put the events aside. On top of that, you will also have to deal with practical problems, such as a drop in income, the need to reapply and tackle the problem of having to explain your resignation during job applications. How do you get out of here?
One perfect way out is to start your own business! Check out my last paragraph.
Here are the twelve awesome tips.
1. See the process of dismissal as a grieving process
In any case, don’t be ashamed. It is not surprising that you are weighed down by your dismissal. A forced layoff can be a traumatic experience. The process of dealing with it is comparable to a grieving process. It often has a major impact, both mentally and physically.
There are many people who have not made the decision to leave their employer themselves. They go through a whole grieving process before they can continue with their lives and careers.
They are often angry because the decision has turned out so badly for them, they also feel betrayed or powerless because they have not been able to turn the tide, and there is sadness because they have to leave their employer.
It also affects your personal relationships. Employees often feel lethargic, depressed, and paralyzed. They are often angry or sad. In addition, they can be confused and in disbelief about their new situation. They often see the future as gloomy.
That means a lot for the partner and any children. The balance is disturbed and the division of roles has changed. In addition, the financial situation also changes. When you end up on benefits, your income decreases and your spending pattern must also change, if you do not want to end up in financial problems.
2. Don’t compare yourself to others
A dismissal is not the same for everyone. You may also know people who seem to get over their layoff much faster. How is that possible? What factors determine the severity of a dismissal? Especially the way in which you were fired.
Are you involved in the process? Did your ex-employer clearly explain why there is no more room for you? Did the company get worse economically? Or were there other demands made on the employer?
It is never nice to experience that the world cannot be made and that as a result you are sometimes confronted with things over which you have little or no influence, such as losing your job through dismissal.
But when this is communicated with you in a respectful and transparent way, it is often easier to accept this loss and it does not have to come at the expense of your self-image.
3. Have a professional goodbye
Did you just get fired? Is there a way to say goodbye to your colleagues with dignity? Let them know that you have been fired and finalize your collaboration professionally. For example, propose to have dinner together or organize a drink.
Try to be neutral and leave your emotions behind. Do not expect your colleagues to do that. They will take a stand. In practice, it turns out that you don’t hear from most colleagues anymore. Accept this and trust your own strength.
4. Be selective when dealing with ex-colleagues
Can it help to contact former colleagues? Yes, but not too much. People who have been fired prefer to continue to hear all the gossip and negativity about their old employer. On the one hand, they find recognition with this, but it also feeds their anger and sadness.
In this case, they actually remain stuck in their own negative spiral. And the positive stories hurt too much again. It is nicer to only keep seeing the former colleagues with whom you also have a personal bond.
It also completely depends on how you were fired. Has the entire department been closed and everyone is forced to stay at home? Then it can help to maintain contact with former colleagues. You can then tell your story and offer each other support It also helps to see how others deal with the situation.
5. Give yourself time
How do you stop looking back and focus on the future? By first allowing yourself to mourn and then looking further. That moment will come naturally. If that is not the case and you are stuck in the past, it is good to talk to a coach. Then it may be that the dismissal has released feelings in you that have to do with a different period in your life. Then this moment is an opportunity to start processing that old pain.
People should look back for a while. You have committed yourself to an organization for a number of years, you have been loyal. The work has become part of your identity and you have personally identified yourself with the organization.
Letting go is therefore not easy. If after a while you are unable to get over your anger and sadness, it can be good to call in the help of a coach or psychologist.
6. Count Your Blessings
Don’t be blind to the good. Don’t think in terms of ‘wrong’ and try to avoid a feeling of guilt. Don’t focus on the fact that you are ‘out of work’, but practice looking at what you do have. For example, a person who because he was out of work, suddenly had a lot more quality time with his son. He was actually very happy about that. It felt like a gift to him.
7. Research what you need
How do you ensure that your self-image becomes more positive again? By listening carefully to yourself, to what you need to be able to process your dismissal. Don’t be too quick to ignore the processing of your feelings. It helps a lot to ask for positive feedback from people around you.
For example, ask them where they think your talents lie. You may come across undiscovered talents. It often turns out that they could not come into their own with the old employer. That, in turn, helps in accepting the resignation.
Take the time to process the loss of your job. Do not expect that you can immediately start something new with good courage and commitment. First, you will have to say goodbye to the old at a pace that is manageable for you.
Research has shown that people who spend time and attention on the psychological consequences of dismissal and who allow themselves the space to go through the grieving process, recover better from dismissal.
That doesn’t mean you can’t look for a new job. Sometimes it just helps to get back to work. You can then experience that you are indeed good at certain things. If you also gain an appreciation for that, it can also give a huge boost to your self-confidence.
8. Create a safe situation to process your emotions
What to do with all those negative emotions? Talk about your feelings with someone who understands your situation or with a professional. Your feelings can’t just be put to an end. What happens to you must have time to fall into place. It is important that you look up your social contacts.
It can also help to write down your emotions on a regular basis. It gives a liberating feeling and you will notice that you can let go of your job. In any case, do not sit with your anger or sadness. And don’t bother your employer or former colleagues with it either.
9. Do things that give you energy
What else can you do to process your resignation? Try to distance yourself from what has happened to you and find an activity that helps you to detach from your situation. Think of making a nice trip, renovating your home, picking up an old hobby, or following a language course. Activities that make you happy and where you can clear your head.
The activities that give you energy are usually also the things you are good at or get satisfaction from. This will make you look more positively at life and also at yourself. It is true that people are only ready for this once they have accepted the resignation.
10. Reinvent yourself
How do you muster the courage to start applying again? Visit a career coach or psychologist who can help you build more self-confidence and self-esteem. You need this to enter the labor market later on. Applying for a job is labor-intensive and requires a great deal of resilience.
It is pleasant and stimulating to be guided in this process. Find answers to the questions “who am I?”, “what do I want?” and “what can I do?”. Then you can apply the right focus and draw up an action plan in your search for the next job.
11. Change your career
Can you learn anything from layoffs? Can you come out stronger? Of course, you can learn something from a layoff. About where your limits and possibilities lie. And that you don’t want to let that pass you by any time soon. See it as an opportunity to finally start doing what you love.
12. Prepare well for interviews
It appears to be the most difficult question for many people in a job interview. My advice is, to be honest. Don’t beat around the bush and avoid going into too much detail about the situation.
Indicate that you were fired due to a reorganization, difference of opinion, or a merger process. If you were fired because you did not function properly, you can indicate that you did not fit the position or culture.
It is in any case not advisable to talk negatively about your former employer. That always comes across as negative, however way you look at it.