At some point during your lifetime, you may find yourself dealing with a job layoff. The whole idea of a layoff is one of the most frightening things that many people keep in the back of their minds every single day. Since our country has recently gone into a recession, more and more people are starting to worry that their job may not be there tomorrow.

While job layoffs are definitely not the norm, even in this fractured state of our economy, they are certainly one of the most painful and overwhelming things to go through.

Actually, dealing with a job layoff is nearly the same as dealing with death and grief; it comes in several stages.

  • First, you will find yourself going through the shock stage. Maybe you worked the same job for the last 15 years, and your boss just came in this morning to tell you that you no longer have a job. It’s a shock to the system that nobody can bounce right back from right away. Then, the odds are good that you will go into the denial stage and believe that it isn’t really happening, and that something will change.
  • Next, many people will clearly notice themselves going through the anger stage. You may become frustrated that this happened to you in the first place, and you may release a lot of pent up emotions about the situation.
  • Third is the bargaining stage, where you unsuccessfully seek an out for the layoff situation. Then you may go into the depression stage and find it hard to even drag yourself out of bed in the mornings to face the day.
  • The testing stage comes next, and that is where you begin thinking of realistic solutions to your problem.
  • Finally, people come to the acceptance stage, when they realize that there isn’t anything they could have done to stop the situation, and they must move on in order to become successful again.

There is no shame in having gone through a layoff, but you must know some important things in order to get through it with your sanity intact. These days, the internet has provided us with many great opportunities to find tips and tricks to get through a job layoff, and you may even search out some support groups or communities online where you can talk to others who are going through the same thing as you are. Some people find that speaking with a therapist helps them get past their job layoff easier. Simply thinking towards the future can help quite a lot.

So try to avoid blaming yourself for what happened, or wondering what you did wrong. Start living in the now. You can acknowledge your past, but you must keep moving forward. You may even find that writing a journal is a great way to put your feelings down and deal with them in a more private manner. This is especially great for people who do not feel comfortable talking to a therapist or even their peers about a recent job layoff.

Author's Bio: 

David Couper is a career coach and writer who for the last twenty years has worked in Europe, Asia, and in the USA with major organizations including the BBC, Fuji Television, Mattel, Sony, and Warner Bros.

He has successfully coached individuals at all levels including CEOs of major companies wanting a new challenge, frustrated souls wanting to make their dream come true, and front-line employees laid off and desperate to get a job.

David has published seven books. His works on interpersonal skills, counseling in the workplace, and management issues (published by Connaught, Gower, HRD Press, Longman, Macmillan/Pearson Publishing, Oxford University Press) have been translated into Swedish, Polish, and Danish, and published in the UK and the USA.

David has a degree in Communication, a postgraduate qualification in education, is certified in a number of training technologies, and has a Masters in Psychology. He is a member of the American Society of Training and Development, Society of Human Resources Professional, Writers Guild and the British Academy of Film and Television.

He has dual US/UK citizenship and speaks French and Japanese.

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