Many workers receive the upsetting news every holiday season that they’re facing a layoff. While there is no ideal time to be fired from a job, there is no doubt that a job loss is especially stinging around the holidays.
While the holidays are a celebratory time for most people, employers usually undertake restructuring and conduct layoffs as they plan for the new year ahead. So, if you’ve been laid off this holiday season, rest assured, knowing you are not alone.
You become a member of a growing club when you are fired from a job. It may not be a club you wanted to be part of, but many folks like you have gotten through it and stand in solidarity beside you. Consider the following six steps if you were fired from your job this holiday season, compiled by those who have been through it.
STEP 1: PROCESS YOUR EMOTIONS.
The most important thing you can do following a holiday layoff is to accept and understand your feelings. For example, you might feel like someone has died or that you can’t go on. Allow yourself to move through your emotions before looking for another job. Remember that it is normal to experience intense anger and grief after being fired because a job loss is also the loss of community and purpose.
Experts say that it is essential to remember that being fired from a job involves an emotional transition, and a period of mourning the loss is entirely appropriate. A job loss can destroy your self-esteem, identity, and finances, so it is normal to experience a wide range of emotional reactions. Just remember that it isn’t going to last forever.
STEP 2: CREATE NEW TRADITIONS FOR THE HOLIDAY.
If you were laid off during the holidays, you might have no choice but to switch things up. For example, after a layoff, you might consider making homemade holiday cards and letting your family know that you cannot give gifts. If you are unsure how long you will be jobless, you may want to keep whatever savings you have instead of blowing your money on holiday gifts.
If family members ask how they can help, consider asking them to give you gifts that will help you survive during this challenging time, such as gift cards you can use t purchase gas to get to job interviews. By being honest about where you at, experts say you might be surprised by the support you receive.
STEP 3: SET HOLIDAY BOUNDARIES WITH THOSE AROUND YOU.
According to experts, an essential part of caring for yourself after a job loss is setting boundaries. Only you can decide what you need and don’t need in terms of unsolicited assistance and commentary from others about your job loss. If the topic is too raw for you, let family members know that although you appreciate any concerns they may have, you want to keep the discussions about the situation at a minimum. If anyone is too pushy with their advice on a job search, don’t be afraid to speak up and let them know that the topic is currently off-limits.
The bottom line, experts say, is that you need to put your own well-being first. If you need time alone, so be it. If you need to be around loved ones, do so, but do it only on your own terms.
STEP 4: MAINTAIN DAILY STRUCTURE.
For most of us, jobs bring structure to our days. After you are fired from a job, you may need to create new routines. A job loss often creates an open schedule. So, you’ll want to keep yourself accountable by setting time blocks where you’ll search for a new job.
Job coaches say that you should set a goal to apply for a certain number of jobs each week or dedicate a certain number of hours each week to your job search. Creating structure also means giving yourself time off, too, experts say. No one can reasonably search for a new job 24/7.
STEP 5: SPREAD THE WORD THAT YOU NEED A JOB.
Job leads can come from anywhere, so let everyone know that you are searching for a new job. Experts say you should never let the embarrassment or shame of losing your job around the holidays hold you back from getting the word out that you need a job. That includes putting the word out on social media.
Experts say that losing a job is normal and nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, being unemployed is a natural aspect of any career. By embracing your situation, you have a better shot at finding a new job more quickly.
STEP 6: USE YOUR FREE TIME TO HONE YOUR SKILLS WHILE MAKING NEW CONNECTIONS.
Losing a job, especially around the holidays, offers the perfect opportunity to update résumés and profiles, according to employment coaches. While job hunting, getting a new job offer isn’t all that matters. The process offers an opportunity to gain positive experiences and new insights.