How Did You Stay Motivated During A Job Loss?

How Did You Stay Motivated During A Job Loss?
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Even when you see it coming, a job loss can be devastating. You go through the emotional process of changing up your routine, and if that’s not enough the hunt for a new job can really take a toll. If you’ve been there, how did you stay motivated?

Picture: stokpic

A long job search is usually full of ups and downs. You think you’ve landed a job, you get excited, you find out you didn’t make the cut, and you get frustrated and discouraged. Maybe you were laid off. Maybe you were fired. Or hell maybe you quit. Whatever the scenario, if you lost a job and went through a long, gruelling process to find a new one, we want to know your how you got through it.

We’ve given you tips on how to stay motivated, but we want to know what worked best for you. And beyond staying motivated how did you stay afloat financially?


  • I got made redundant after 18 months at a place that I loved working at. I also had the carrot of permanency dangled in front of me for that entire time.

    I held up hope by pursuing work through people I knew and by enjoying the free time of the forced holiday. I worked through a home project (HTPC and media sort) that I had been putting off for months.

    I was also very lucky that I had been able to save enough money that it wasn’t in a lot of trouble from bills.

  • It’s damn tough I can tell you! Would not want to be in same situation again.

    My last job the CEO laid-off anyone who couldn’t or wouldn’t join him moving his business to the Philippines. I have a new addition to the family and no expenses or desire to move there. With just a weeks notice I was out, no backup job and it took me 7 months to find a new one. The stress and emotions it takes on how much money you have left and knowing that that next bill can send you broke and in debt is always there and will not go away. You start prioritising to basic needs until the money is just well.. gone. Trying to find a new job is equally as stressful and you find yourself lowering your standards and salary expectations. I took a massive pay-cut to what I was regularly earning at my old job, just to land a job in which I do the same thing I did when I started my career as a junior, just to be able to survive. There was just no other way.
    You are either too old, expensive, fat, thin, male, female, etc.

    I am back on top of things now, but even after almost a year of working at my new job my finances still feel that sting of not having a job for 7 months. It takes a long while before things are back to normal.

    • 7 months is a tough search!! Again, I was extremely lucky that a guy (now my boss) I worked with at the old place gave me a chance very soon after I was retrenched.

      Also, I had been searching for a house to buy during my time at the last place. Very glad I didn’t as I wouldn’t have had my savings to fall back on. RENT LYFE!!

  • I was made redundant from my consulting job in late 2013. Although it wasn’t the perfect job for me, the poor job market had meant I’d held onto it.

    I was fortunate to still have a part-time job at a local university which paid just enough to mean we didn’t qualify for any welfare. I also did a bunch of short contract jobs for everyone I could find. Together these were enough, with some severe belt tightening, to keep our finances afloat. Our quite conservative attitude to debt (we have a 5 figure mortgage) meant we were able to maintain the mortgage payments.

    I kept motivated by networking heavily. I would have easily met with over 100 people in 2014 seeking work. I tried as hard as I could to focus on what I could change, and to ignore things (like the poor job market) that I couldn’t. Eventually it paid off. I got a full-time job offer 12 months after I lost my old job. I found that if I could make progress towards meeting another person each day, that at least felt like I wasn’t stagnating.

    I also used the time to upgrade my skills and knowledge. I learnt the R language (statistical computer package) which I now use sometimes in my work. I picked up VBA and can now do heaps more automation in MS Office. And I read heaps of books I’d wanted to read for years.

    On the plus side, I had plenty of time with my pre-school age kids and my wife. We are a stronger family now and I’m much closer to the kids, especially to our youngest.

    My lessons were:
    – Don’t take on too much debt that you can’t get out of quickly. If things turn bad you’ll be glad you don’t have the burden.
    – Keep progressing your networking every day. Job ads are mostly a waste of time, pursue them by all means, but focus on meeting people and being forward enough to ask for meetings with others.
    – You’ll feel bad sometimes. I had periods I felt so low and my family felt it, especially the kids. I learnt to talk it out with friends or my wife and try and shield the kids from my bad moods. Exercise is a great help for emotional troubles, as is the act of building something (for me it’s building computer code and taking photographs).
    – You need to have a level of belief that things will get better if you keep working towards that. It may take years but eventually it will get better.

    The upshot of all this is I’ve now gone into business on my own, on the back of all my networking. I earn more than I ever earned as an employee and work maybe ⅔ of the hours. So I now realise that making my own job is an option too.

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