I recently said to my partner, “Oh I’ve picked up some work on a factory closure that starts next week”. He replied, “What a shame for the workers!” He’s absolutely right. He went straight to the heart of the situation – the emotions the staff members will experience when facing the prospect of finding a new job.
As a Career Coach, my role is to soften the blow for the people affected by organisational restructures by guiding workers to think about what’s next, get their resume updated, build their interview skills and their confidence throughout the redundancy process.
I find with the people I meet and work with the hardest part for them is managing the emotions of this change. Often the decision is taken out of their hands and not only do they feel disempowered they can’t help but take the news personally. An array of emotions such as disbelief, denial and anger are commonly felt and expressed, and I work with people to look at ways to manage their stress and build resilience at this tough time. In 2015 I wrote about taking care of yourself when facing change and the key tips I give are to:
Set up regular meetings with a career coach to help keep on track with your career transition.
Talk with trusted and supportive friends and family about your situation.
Seek financial advice and prepare a budget to help with future planning.
Take care of your health by exercising at least three times a week and eating cleanly (try to keep sugar, refined/process foods and alcohol to a minimum).
Make job search your “job” by creating a daily routine of activity. Each decision you make or action you take is an achievement and a step in the right direction.
Keep up your regular interests that you enjoy – these are part of your routine and can be a mindful and creative outlet for you.
See your GP for a mental health check up and discuss options for counselling, if needed.
I’d also like to add a couple more tips that are recommended for managing stress and anxiety.
Make it a daily practice to think about what you are grateful for – it may be family, your pets, home, sports team winning, feeling proud or happy for a friend. You supported someone in need (or they supported you!). Just the act of thinking about gratitude sends positive signals from your brain to your body.
By adopting these tips and allowing yourself time to get through this period, you’ll soon find yourself feeling more positive and enjoying a healthy momentum towards your new career goals. I speak from my own experience in dealing with change, plus coaching others and hearing their stories. Everyone I’ve worked with has found a new role they enjoy and are suited to. I feel grateful for being part of their transformation and making their lives a little better.
If you, a friend or a loved one needs help, confidential crisis support is available via:
Have you been faced with a choice and not sure which direction to take? This happens to all of us at some point, and to varying degrees. Indecision can be stressful, especially when something’s riding on it, such as getting a job. I’ve seen people struggle with decisions relating to their job search and career, when they’ve needed a sounding board to work things through. Continue reading →
This week is National Volunteers Week in Australia where the theme is Give Happy, Live Happy. This message is about volunteers making a difference to other people’s lives, but also the effect of volunteering on their own well being, by lifting mood and happiness. I volunteer my time with a local group – Harcourt Progress Association, by coordinating the advertising for their monthly newspaper – The Core. This newsletter didn’t exist two years ago and I really enjoy working with the Editor and being part of its growth. The Core is now at 24 pages and features interesting articles, event information, a crossword, local stories & much more. Continue reading →
Do you aspire to do things differently or make changes for the better but end up making excuses and doing nothing? Changing habits is about making a commitment to changing our behaviour or actions in areas that are important to us, such as health, money, work and relationships. It’s about identifying what you’d like to improve and taking manageable steps towards making this change.
I’ve written previously on the topic of procrastination and wanted to expand on this with some more strategies to get you moving forward. To get you thinking about how you can make a change, here are five questions to ask yourself: Continue reading →
I admire people who recognise that their chosen job is ‘not for life’ and then do something about it. My Mum started studying for a university degree in her 40s and has since transitioned from working as a Personal Assistant to working in mental health as a Carer Consultant – a role which she thoroughly enjoys.
Being open to a new career path and exploring ways to make this happen, can pay off when you find yourself being paid for what you love. Here’s a couple of career change stories to give you some inspiration:
“This type of life is marked by a courteous respect for others’ rights, a responsiveness to others’ needs (including, most particularly, their need to be taken seriously) and a concern for others’ wellbeing. A person living this life will be motivated by kindness and compassion.”
When I reflect on my own values and actions I hope that this is the life I’m living. Last year I noticed an article in our local newspaper, the Bendigo Advertiser, which asked people to share stories about their random acts of kindness. For instance – giving someone a smile, visiting an animal shelter, and making your workmate a cup of tea. I’d like to think most of us do these things without too much thought. Continue reading →