4 Ways To Cope With The Stress You Might Feel After Losing Your Job

Posted by WhiteSwan Foundation in Mental Health
December 2, 2016

The loss of a job, like any other loss, can be overwhelming, shocking and can shake our sense of stability and confidence. It’s important to know how to cope and be compassionate with ourselves during these times. White Swan Foundation spoke to Bangalore-based counsellor Maullika Sharma to understand how we can help ourselves.

When times are uncertain, organisations begin cutting costs by laying off staff. If you’ve lost your job recently, or a few months ago, you may be feeling sad, helpless or overwhelmed about it.

Many of us define ourselves by the work we do, and work helps us have a sense of purpose and achievement. This means that the loss of a job could impact us more than we think. If you have recently been asked to leave, you may be feeling:

1. Unprepared and shocked if the incident was sudden.

2. Helpless, not knowing what to do.

3. Anxious about your future, and concerned about your responsibilities.

4. Overwhelmed as you think about sharing the news with family, and managing until you find your next job.

Here’s How You Can Cope With The Stress And Anxiety:

Remember that the layoff may have had little to do with your performance, and more to do with the larger picture. Try not to look at it as a personal failure, or a reflection of your performance. It is a combination of circumstances in your environments that you cannot control – business reasons, management reasons, your inability to perform due to other stressors in your life at this time, etc.

  • Acknowledge your strengths and skills.
  • Remember that this incident may be a minor setback, and does not have to be the end of the road. This event is not representative of you as a failure in totality. At best it is representative of your not being successful at something you were doing. There are several other things that you can be successful at.
  • Remind yourself about the other aspects of your life that contribute to your self-identity and self-worth. This could be your family, friendships, hobbies, or activities that give you some meaning and purpose.
  • Reach out to trusted friends. Your family may not be able to offer you adequate support as they may feel some emotional or financial pressure arising from the layoff. Talk to someone you can trust, and who will lend you a non-judgmental ear.

If you feel overwhelmed, reach out to a counsellor or call a helpline.

This article was originally written for White Swan Foundation. To read more personal narratives and understand mental health visit www.whiteswanfoundation.org.

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