How do you cope with job loss?

Coping with job loss is easy, if you deal with the problem head on.  If you’ve been unemployed for either 24 hours or 24 months, how is the stress?

Has stress mounted on you yet? Do you feel like the world is crumbling around you?

Well if you’ve answered yes, what are you doing for the stress?

Well first, let’s be serious…what’s the worst that can happen to you today?

Are you behind on payments?

Have you lost your insurance?

Have the unemployment benefits run out or are about to run dry?

Have you answered yes to any of these? If so, stop for a moment. Take a deep breath…then tell yourself.  I am ok, everything is ok.  All I need to focus on is what I can do right now….

Now ask yourself, what can you do right now to deal with this stress?

Well first address the issue at the core.

How are you holding up?  Has your health been affected by the stress? Have you gained weight or felt a sense of lethargy grow over you recently?  If so, we need to do something for you today!

I’m serious about this, take a walk or go for a bike ride.

Stress will kill you but owing money won’t.  No matter how much money you owe someone one, you can not die from debt.  It might feel like you’ll die but that’s simply a sign you need to work off stress before you can deal with the problem.

Similar to how highly paid baseball players say, “You can’t let the pressure get to you.  It’s important to simply go out there & play the game like a kid.  That way I forget about the salary, the lights & the attention.  It’s just me, the bat & the ball.”

If you stress too much about the lights & all the attention, you’ll never accomplish any simple task.

So for you, if you feel stress. What can you do to work off the stress or move those thoughts out of your mind?

Well if you want my honest opinion, I say, exercise.  You need to get your mind off the stress you’re placing on yourself.  (Yes, I do believe the stress you feel is created by you & no one else) If you have time to sit online & read a blog, your life can’t be too immediately stressful. (Definitely not as stressful as people in third world countries who stress about food, clean water & clothing.  That’s actual stress)

When you feel stressed it’s impossible to make reasonable decisions.  You make quick & often rash decisions.  For those around us, it’s not hard to tell when stress is destroying our lives.  We become aggressive, irritated & edgy with the ones we love.  Has this started to happen to you?

What if you could lose 100 lbs & cut your stress?  Do you think you’d be happier & able to make better decisions for your future?

I ask about 100 lbs because a man lost his job, his health insurance, had a pre-existing heart condition & still lost 100 lbs – He says he’s happier, has more energy & is less stressed.  So are you ready to cope with job loss effectively?

If not, stop reading now & go back to being stressed & miserable.  No one can be helped if they don’t want to help themselves.  If you’re a parent you know this; a temper tantrum from a child who is stressed about their lack of a candy bar.  You can extend a hand to help them off the ground but if they never reach back, they will lay on the ground all day.

Don’t think you’re above help or being exposed to stress.  You are, we all are.  It’s how we respond & bounce back that’s important.

Now it’s time for an actual understanding to coping with job loss.

From Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, author of On Death and Dying:

  1. Denial (this isn’t happening to me!)
  2. Anger (why is this happening to me?)
  3. Bargaining (I promise I’ll be a better person if…)
  4. Depression (I don’t care anymore)
  5. Acceptance (I’m ready for whatever comes)

These are the 5 stages of coping.  Job loss is hardly different from coping with death.  For more on this issue, please check out our Coping with Job Loss Article

If you want more career transition resources check out – – Your Career Transition Resource

If you want FREE career advice, feel free to ask me a question: Ask the Career Doctor


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