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Lose your job? 10 things you shouldn't do!

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1. DON’T: Send a scathing email to your former boss, or even possibly the CEO of the company, telling him or her exactly what you think of the company and how you were treated. Business communities are small and the world is interconnected, a momentary lapse in judgement may result in a lifetime of impact.

DO: Send an email to the people you worked with telling them how much you enjoyed working with them (only if it’s true), leaving on a positive note. If you need to diffuse your feelings, write the email that you wanted to write, but don’t send it. Note: Do not put the individual’s email address in the “To” line; leave it blank. Many such emails have been accidentally sent.

2. DON’T: Rant and rave on social media about the injustice of it all. Social media memories are forever. You don’t want to say something in anger or haste that you may regret later. I’ve seen careers impacted by indiscretions from years prior.

DO: Talk with close friends and family who will listen and support you. Rant and rave with them in a safe environment. Note that having a loud conversation at Starbucks may not be the best!

3. DON’T: Immediately start looking for another role. You might say, “I need to support my family and haste is important.” If you’re still dealing with the impact of a termination or lay-off, your feelings will show up in your interactions with others.

DO: Take a bit of time off to rest, recover, and reflect. Creating some space between the negative event and your positive future will pay off with a more positive attitude, and a willingness and desire to move forward.

4. DON’T: Take too long to start that job search again! That may seem counter to #3, however, there is a fine balance between taking a break and becoming immobile. Once we become comfortable, it takes a lot to move us out of it!

DO: Start looking for a new role after you’ve had a chance to process what’s happened. This may be a week or two weeks after the event

5. DON’T: Hide away, avoid social contact, or dwell in the dark.

DO: Stay involved in your social life. Get together with family and friends. Social interaction tends to take one’s mind off of a negative situation, unless, of course, you are rehashing what happened over and over again…then just stop it!

6. DON’T: Pretend that it didn’t happen or act as if nothing is wrong.

DO: Share your feelings with those you trust and who support you.

7. DON’T: Expect your friends and family to drop everything because of what happened to you.

DO: Take an interest in what your family and friends are doing and what’s happening in their world.

8. DON’T: Be overconfident that you will find a new role just like that! Your skills may be in high demand… or not. It typically takes people longer than they expected to find a new role.

DO: Be confident in your skills and abilities. Be positive about being successful in finding a new role. Take steps to find your next role.

9. DON’T: Shun your network or feel embarrassed to ask for assistance in your search.

DO: Contact people in your network who you are connected with and ask them to assist you in your search. The higher your pay grade, the more jobs are in the hidden job market. It’s often about who you know, rather than what you know.

10. DON’T: See this as the end of your career or be overly negative and vocal about how you feel the company treated you. This only creates greater negativity and a continued focus on what happened. It is good to acknowledge your emotional response, but not helpful to wallow in it for an extended period of time.

DO: Focus on the positives in the situation. The situation may be the stimulus required for you to move forward to try something that you’ve always wanted to do – take that extended vacation, go back to school, or start your own company. The possibilities are endless.

How have you dealt with job loss? Are there tips you can share? Have these tips helped you?

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