If you are one of the many who have been impacted by a layoff or forced to separate from your employer, this can be an emotional and mentally challenging time. Suffering a loss like this can result in a grieving process similar to when we lose a loved one. It is a natural response to loss. Accepting that grief is part of the healing process can help you pick yourself back up and move forward.

Grief is a complex process that we all experience at some point in our lives.   The stages of grief are commonly referred to as the Kübler-Ross model, named after psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, who first proposed them in her book “On Death and Dying.” The model consists of five stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.

  1. Denial:  The first stage of grief is denial. It is a defense mechanism that helps us cope with the shock of the loss. When someone is laid off from their job, they may initially refuse to accept that it has happened. They may believe that there has been a mistake or that they will be able to return to their job soon.
  2. Anger:  The second stage of grief is anger. It is a normal response to the loss of control and the feeling of being wronged. When someone is laid off from their job, they may become angry at their employer, the company, or even themselves. They may feel like they have been unfairly treated or that they have been let down by people they trusted.
  3. Bargaining:  The third stage of grief is bargaining. It is a way of trying to regain control and find a solution to the loss. When someone is laid off from their job, they may start to bargain with themselves or their employer. They may ask themselves if they could have done something differently or if there is anything they can do to get their job back.
  4. Depression:  The fourth stage of grief is depression. It is a natural response to the sadness and loss that comes with the experience. When someone is laid off from their job, they may become depressed and experience feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, and worthlessness. They may feel like they have lost their purpose and identity.
  5. Acceptance:  The final stage of grief is acceptance. It is the stage where we begin to come to terms with the loss and find a way to move forward. When someone is laid off from their job, they may eventually come to accept that they have lost their job and that they need to find a new path forward. They may start to explore new opportunities or consider a career change.

Recovering mentally from a job loss can take time and effort, but there are some things that can help.

  1. Allow Time to Grieve:  First and foremost, it’s important to take care of yourself during this time. Take a few days or a week to work through the stages of grief.  Allow yourself some time to mentally decompress.  This might mean taking time off to focus on your mental health or engaging in activities that you enjoy.
  2. Reach Out:  It’s important to reach out for support.  Call friends, family, or even a mental health professional to openly discuss the situation. This is different than networking.  That will come later.  Locate those nearest to you who can provide emotional and mental support.  Talking through the event can speed up the healing process and be the first step to helping you move on.
  3. Acknowledge your Emotions:  One way to help yourself move through the stages of grief is to acknowledge and work through your emotions. This might mean journaling about your feelings or talking to someone about what you’re going through. It’s important to remember that everyone’s grief journey is unique, so it’s okay if you don’t feel like you’re progressing through the stages of grief in a linear way.
  4. Set Goals:  Another way to help yourself recover mentally from a layoff is to set goals for the future. This might mean exploring new job opportunities, starting a new hobby, or making plans for the future. By focusing on what’s next, you can help yourself move on from the past.
  5. Use Prayer, Meditation, or even Mind Control:  Calming your mind to help you make better decisions during this time can be hugely beneficial. Try spending some alone time in prayer or meditation asking for direction.  If you want to go even deeper, consider learning techniques like the Silva Mind Control Method to strengthen your mindset and open up mentally creative avenues.

While the experience of being laid off from a job may not be the same as losing a loved one, it can still be a significant loss that triggers a range of emotions. By understanding the stages of grief and recognizing where we are in the process, we can begin to work through our emotions and find a way to move forward with some determination and focus.

I hope this helps you in your job search.  If Fortify Experts can be of assistance, please reach out.  Below you will find many additional job hunting and interviewing tips.  If you know someone who would benefit from these, please share them.