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You lost your job, now what? 3 things you can do to make this period a bit less overwhelming

Getting laid off/losing your job for whatever reason is never easy. We all have responsibilities, bills to pay, people who rely on us, among other things. Many of us have gone through this or similar experiences in our work at least once in our careers. However, it is essential to deal with this loss in a healthy/positive way, as difficult as it may seem to do at this moment. That doesn’t mean you should pretend it didn’t happen, it is silly to do that and quite impossible; take time to feel the pain this may be causing, acknowledge it, accept it, and then create a plan of action for next steps. Here are 3 things you can do to make this transition a bit less overwhelming.

1.    Take time to reflect on the situation, what happened, what went wrong, what went right, what are the lessons to take away from this, what are the positives (there are usually positives in most situations), what is this trying to teach you, accept what is, acknowledge the feelings, take some time (not too long, maybe just a few days or more, depending your situation) to merely go through the emotions of this loss, talk to someone if you need to (a friend, a family member, a professional). Take time to think of what you would like to do next, this may be a blessing in disguise for you to pursue something you have always wanted to pursue. Once you are ready to take the next step, go to #2.

2.    Get comfortable with telling your story. As you prepare to have conversations about opportunities that may be out there, you first need to be comfortable telling others what happened with your previous job, when applicable. More often than not, it is our own fear or shame that is affecting us, not what others may think of it. Be confident in telling your story, whatever it may be and focus on what you bring to the table. If YOU seem uncertain or ashamed or afraid of rejection, that is how it will translate in every conversation you have about potential work. Half of the battle is simply overcoming your own discomfort in telling people that you are unemployed for ‘x’ reasons. 

3.    Create a plan of action and stay persistent. Treat this as a project, looking for work is a full-time job. Create a plan of actions for each day, each week, with timelines, deliverables, reflection points, etc. What would you like to do next? Who do you need to get in touch with? How many new people do you need to meet each week? What networking functions are available online or offline? How many of those you need to attend? Spend time on personal development - read, keep up with the news in your industry, listen to podcasts (listed to some inspirational talks that might help you in this time of transition to keep you positive), maintain a healthy lifestyle, exercise daily (you have time!), do allocate time during the week to NOT do job search things, this gives you a mental break and allows space for strategic planning for the following week (job search can become exhausting so give yourself time to rest). 

Worst things do happen, so don't let this bump in the road get you off track your ultimate goals. Surround yourself with people who can support you in this journey, be kind to yourself, and work towards your next role. You got this! 
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