Do you want to survive redundancy? Of course you do. And you will. It’s just that when it happens, yes, when you lose your job you often feel that it’s the end of life as you know it. It’s not surprising really as most job losses are not handled that well. Even if they are sensitively dealt with, it is not unusual at some point to feel traumatised.
The mix of emotions are hardly unsurprising. Your daily structure has just been shattered, so it is more than likely that you will experience amongst other things anger, dismay, rejections, self-doubt and disbelief.
In fact redundancy has been compared to losing a loved one.
As with bereavement, there is often a flow of emotions that we experience and for some the sequence is easier than others, and for others the emotions are more of a challenge. The pattern might be severe at first but ease after a while.
The stages and typical feelings are:
Primary – Initial Phase
- Unreal optimism
So this is the time when you get the news, you might be in shock and you can’t believe it’s happening to you. When the truth hits home you might begin to feel confused, or perhaps even think that it’s a mistake and it is not happening to you. You might even think it is a temporary blip and that it is not worth signing on or claiming benefit.
Beware: this is the time that many people spend their payout on a holiday or property alterations.
Secondary – Intermediate Phase
- Unreal pessimism
This is the stage when negative feelings set in, fantasising about revenge, worrying about your personal responsibilities and financial status. Anxiety and despair may set in preventing you taking practical steps. If you felt a lack of emotion in the first stage, you might now be feeling overloaded with emotions.
You begin to worry about finding another job, you might have been unsuccessful in your first job applications so your self-confidence has taken a knock. You might even be avoiding your friends and acquaintances.
Beware: this is the time that social isolation can set in.
Tertiary – Settling Down Phase
- Acceptance / resignation
- Realistic optimism / hopelessness
- Purposefulness / defeat
Now, you know you are unemployed and you can accept this in two ways. With resigned acceptance or constructive resignation.
- Resigned acceptance
This is the negative continuation of the last two stages – and your morale dips further; you might be bored, isolated, bitter and your rejection continues. Your aspirations reduce and depression could set in. You have lost hope, our job search is sporadic, purposeless and without hope and expectation.
- Constructive acceptance
You are practical. You have come to terms with your situation, accepting the mix of emotions and your current position. You make realistic future plans and are able to look forward clearly and confidently. You become focused and energetic. You consider your future direction and take stock of your working life.
Depending on your personal coping strategies also depends on whether you are resigned or constructive at the acceptance stage. You will survive redundancy and finding a positive outlook is one way to retain your readiness for work.
There are a few things that help in making a constructive outcome:
- Structure your daily routine
- Build your confidence and self-esteem
- Rebuild your security
- Plan for the future
Contact us for more information on surviving redundancy and achieving a smooth career transition.