Getting laid off can feel devastating and personal. It can cause anyone to succumb to an emotional roller coaster. Even if it’s no fault of your own, oftentimes it brings up issues that you never thought you had. Here are some steps to take if you or anyone you know has been laid off from their job as a result of the pandemic.
Circle Slash Your Inner Critic
Reflection and being honest with yourself about what happened are all good things. However, take care not to spin yourself down a negative path. Your mindset and how you frame the situation will be key to how you decide to move forward. Remind yourself that there’s a global pandemic going on right now and loads of organizations are restructuring in order to stay afloat.
Susan Peppercorn wrote Harvard Business Review’s, “How to Silence Your Inner Critic After a Layoff”. She recommends creating mental habits to get you through the layoff process and explained, “after a layoff, it’s completely normal to find yourself in the grip of anger and self-doubt, and these feelings can linger. Yet while it’s important to acknowledge what happened and the feelings that go along with it, it then becomes critical to pay attention to what you are telling yourself and determine whether your thinking style is helping or hindering your goals. By questioning your inner critic, you can stop the negative cycle of self-blame that’s holding you back from taking positive steps forward.”
Remember Previous Wins
Ask yourself three questions that address a time you overcame a difficult work situation. Envisioning wins from the past will help get you out of a negative tailspin. What strengths did you use to resolve a problem? What did you learn about yourself in the process? How can you use these strengths in your current career transition? Recalling those situations can help you move forward and realize you’re capable of overcoming obstacles.
Prioritize Evolving & Reinvention
One way to stay relevant is to reskill or take a course that has always interested you. As a mid-career professional, it will help psychologically and will build confidence over time. When you face an obstacle, you’ll be able to power through it more easily because you’ve already tackled challenges along the way which helps to increase resilience. MOOCS (Massive Open Online Courses) are a great way to lean into your curiosity and test your interest level. Search for the free ones available and make a list of what you want to learn (more to come in a separate article dedicated to online courses for upskilling).
Set up video calls with people through your network who may need your help. When you reverse the situation and provide your expertise for someone else, it helps to build yourself back up. It’s also a great way to expand your network (and create more fans).
And finally, know that if you’re willing to learn and adapt to change, companies will absolutely need your help. Technology innovation is constant and if you’re able to keep up on trends and learn how to use the latest business tools, you’ll be in a better position to get hired. When the upturn in hiring happens, you’ll be prepared.
Below are a few resources we thought might be helpful.
Reviewed & Recommended:
Career Tools Podcast:
Tips on how to be prepared for the upturn in the market and keeping skills (including interview skills) fresh and up to date as well as updating all social media and keeping in touch with your network.
The Knowledge Project with Shane Parrish:
Episode 74: Embracing Confusion with Jeff Hunter — CEO of Talentism, Jeff Hunter, teaches how to rewrite damaging narratives that hold us back, how to give and receive helpful feedback, and why confusion can be a good thing. He writes, “Confusion is an ever-present byproduct of growth. It’s how we deal with it that determines our ultimate success or failure. Our hard-wiring pulls us toward protection, down a path of Certainty. But it’s only through clarity that productive progress can occur.”
YouTube: Kerri Twig
A career coach in Canada, Kerri works with many mid-career professionals. She can be nutty but that’s why we like her. Anything but authentic feels like a waste of time right now. Here’s a recent episode that we thought would be helpful.
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Emily’s vision for illume hire developed as part of her journey from a startup-curious sales and marketing professional to co-founder and CEO. Her passion is to provide the tools and community to support other mid-career professionals to maximize their mid-career momentum. In addition to her work with illume hire, Emily is part of the founding leadership team of Age Equity Alliance, a non-profit focused on age diversity in the workplace