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How to Shake Post-Layoff Insecurities

How to Shake Post-Layoff Insecurities

Start your new job fret-free!

Megan Malugani, Monster Contributing Writer

A layoff humbled you and unemployment terrified you. So now that you’ve finally landed a new job, shouldn’t you be unequivocally thrilled?

Not quite. If your life was turned upside down by a layoff, you’re probably dealing with mixed emotions upon reentering the workplace. Although you’re relieved and excited, you may also suffer lingering effects from your ordeal, such as fear that you won’t be successful again, anxiety about another layoff or bitterness that your career path has been altered.

Three career experts offer advice on how to overcome your lingering negativity and send your emotional baggage packing so you can start a new job successfully.

Remember Why You’re Great

Uncertainty throws people off balance and is the root of anxiety for those starting new jobs, says Deborah Brown-Volkman, an East Moriches, New York, career coach and author of How to Feel Great at Work Every Day, Coach Yourself to a New Career and other titles.

“What freaks people out is the unknown,” she says. “If you’ve been unemployed for a while, you may worry, ‘Can I do the job? Will I be successful? Will I have the endurance to get up and go back to work? Will I get along with my boss and coworkers?’” To combat these insecurities, spend some time looking at your own resume and reminding yourself of your past accomplishments, Brown-Volkman recommends.

Take One Day at a Time

Barbara Witkow, a psychotherapist from Bellevue, Washington, advises clients who are returning to work after a layoff to take one day at a time. “The whole idea is to make it through the first day, and then the first week,” she says. “Soon you’ll be feeling a sense of rhythm and familiarity, and a lot of the anxiety will be eased.”

Next Page: Remember the Big Picture →



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    This was a helpful article, if nothing else than to let me know I'm not the only person who feels this way. I was laid off in March and have been on unemployment since then, and the thought of getting a new job terrifies me for many of the reasons given here. I'm afraid my boss won't like me, that I'll do badly at my new job, and that I'll just get fired or laid off again. Being unemployed can really hurt a person's self-confidence.

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