6 Ways To Be An Unemployed BadAss
Over the weekend I spent time reading your comments on last week’s #ChatWithChels post and I’m so happy to hear that the interview tips I shared were well received! As I walked out of the coffee shop with my laptop in hand I reflected on my personal career path. I started all the way back at the beginning with my first job at Abercrombie & Fitch, popped collar and all, at the sweet age of 16. I took a few minutes to think about each position I have held since then, what I've learned and how it's lead me to where I am today. Now that you know that I proudly rocked an A&F logo I want to share with you something that I have only discussed with my close inner circle.
*Stops typing. Takes a deep breath. *
I’ve been fired before. Actually, I’ve been fired twice. Yes, me. The smiley #blogger girl on Instagram got the boot straight out the door so quickly that I didn’t even have time to blink.
I remember the gut wrenching feeling in my stomach. I remember watching my boss’s mouth move but not being able to process the words that they spoke. I remember sitting in their office visualizing my whole world bursting up in flames. I remember convincing myself that I would have no other option but to move home and live with my parents until I hit my 50th birthday. I remember for the first time feeling like a failure. The smile was gone and the mental breakdown was in full effect.
After many tears, cartons of Ben & Jerry's and in depth conversations with myself - I survived. There it is, the silver lining: survival.
Here’s how to be a bad ass and get back on your own two feet after losing a job:
1. Say No
Unfortunately, the world does not stop to accommodate your turmoil. Your friend’s social lives will go on and taco Tuesday will still be a thing. Since your income has come to a screeching stop you need to be mature enough to be able to say no to certain things. Yes, that means that instead of sipping on half-bottle priced wine you should be glued to your laptop applying for jobs. The sooner you remove the ‘unemployed’ label the sooner you can be back out enjoying life as it once was.
2. Make networking your new BFF
No one is off limits and I mean no one. If you have a hunch that your grandmothers next door neighbors third cousin’s son will be able to help – reach out to them. Tuck your pride into your back pocket and make the phone call. You never, ever, know where it can lead. If you hear a whisper of a networking event write it in ink in your calendar. Do your research, show face and shake every hand that you can. Be smart and strategic about your outreach and don’t be afraid to tell people about your job search!
3. Be a mess
Let it out, let it all out. Cry the tears that make your words unrecognizable. Cry in the middle of your workout class, cry to the food delivery guy or cry alone on your couch (I suggest the latter but to each their own.) This is a major life change and suppressing your emotions will only come back to bite you in the butt.
4. Be you
If your routine was to wake up at 6AM to workout before work then keep doing that. The worst thing you can do is to throw yourself into a pity party rut and off track of your daily routine. Go about your day as normal as possible and make adjustments accordingly.
5. Soul search
Whatever soul searching means to you, this is your time to do it. Whether you want to run off to the beaches of Mexico or if you want to hole up with your nose in a book do so and do so with confidence. This may be the only time in your life where you don’t have someone breathing down your neck telling you where to be between the hours or 9AM and 5PM so use your ‘off’ time in the way that you would like. In the reflective moments you may even find yourself interested in exploring a new career path!
Yup, cue the cliché pep talk. No matter what deck of cards is dealt to you, trusting that everything happens for a reason is personally what keeps me afloat. If that stands true to you as well never lose sight of that feeling. Trust in yourself, trust your path, trust the bumps and trust the smooth roads. As always, you got this.