The news never comes easy. In the blink of an eye, you are forced to contend with a new reality. What did you do wrong? How will you support yourself while you find new employment? Do you have enough squirreled away in savings? Will another job even take you?
Getting fired can be a lot to process. In the following hours and days, you will experience a gamut of emotions – some productive, others not. Coping throughout the process requires a mixture of cool-headedness, pragmatism, self-support, and outside advice.
In this article, let’s discuss how to cope with being fired. Whether you have found this article after recently experiencing a job termination, or simply want to prepare for an unexpected dismissal, you will find a few helpful tips below.
If Something Seems Wrong, Contact An Employment Lawyer
If you sense that you have been wrongfully dismissed or that the severance package offered is inadequate, reach out to an employment lawyer.
If you believe your termination was without cause or adequate notice, take your story to a professional. They can offer advice and guidance, and explain your options to you.
They can also ensure that you get a fair severance package. Most people understand that they are entitled to some compensation upon termination, but they aren’t sure how much. You may be entitled to the ESA (Employment Standards Act) minimum, or a much more generous common law notice. Therefore, it can be advantageous to have an employment lawyer review your severance package before agreeing to anything (more on that below).
Remain Calm In The Moment
The conversation often comes as a surprise – you are invited into an office and handed the bad news without much warning. First, resist the urge to do or say anything you may regret. Unloading a litany of curse words may feel good in the moment, but it can negatively impact your chances of employment in the future – especially if you want to continue working in the same industry. And especially if you rely on a good reference.
Being caught off-guard is also often not the right emotional and mental headspace for discussing important issues like severance and references. Instead, consider making an appointment to talk about these issues at a later date. This buys you time to compose yourself.
Learn, Grow And Focus On Your Strengths
The two tips above concern the practical and legal side of termination – but what about its emotional impact? Many people feel dejected after being fired. They internalize the bad news, considering it a complete personal failing on their part.
Being fired can help you evaluate your weaknesses at work, but it’s best not to dwell on weakness for too long. If your employer offers valid reasons for your termination, accept them and work on them. But understand that termination is often a result of circumstances too.
Remember to focus on your strengths throughout the process. Doing so will help you build your confidence as you look for new employment.
Being fired can be a distressing, dispiriting experience. Coping with it takes time, personal reflection, restraint, and outside help in the form of an employment lawyer. You will get through it, though – and you may even be better on the other end.
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