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Doing These 5 Things Can Help You Bounce Back From a Layoff: It’s Time for the Next Step in Your Career

Are you struggling to bounce back from a layoff? Here are some tips you can use to rise above the shock and hit the ground running.

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Are you struggling to bounce back from a layoff? Here are some tips you can use to rise above the shock and hit the ground running.


It is natural to feel self-pity and unmotivated after the company tells you they no longer need your services. I’m sure the question buzzing through your mind right now is - ‘What should I do now?’ At this point, it feels easier to sit back and let life deal you its cards. However, there is a better way to deal with it and bounce back from a layoff. Here is a guide to help you take the right next steps in your career.

5 things that can help you bounce back from a layoff


  • Acknowledge your emotions

You will experience a wide range of emotions immediately after you are laid off from work. Expect to feel panic, anger, self-pity, self-loathing, and exhilaration as you start a new chapter of your life. Instead of ignoring these emotions, you should acknowledge them. Feel whatever emotion you need to feel. Afterwards, take a pen and paper, sit down, and plan for your future. If you are struggling with acknowledging these emotions and accepting your current situation, you can join a group or speak with a professional.


  • Open up

Once you acknowledge your feelings, you will realize that your ego has taken a big blow. You might get tempted to crawl into a bubble and stay there until you get another job. However, speaking about it will help you accept your situation. Speaking out the words “I am unemployed/I was laid off” will help you offload the emotional baggage and let you come to terms with your situation. 

You can start by letting your friends and family know you are available for new job opportunities. Opening up will allow you to start looking for your next job. As you open up, focus on letting people know what your next steps are rather than focusing on the layoff. Let them know how you want to bounce back from a layoff.


  • Create a budget and work on your financial plans

Figure out how much you have in your savings to sustain you until you get a new job. Accumulating debts while you try to get a new job will strain you. Make the necessary adjustments to your spending and organize your finances before your next paycheck.


Read also: How to manage your finances after you just got laid off  



  • Work on your personal development

Think about the knowledge gaps that you have in your career. This could be a great time to invest in your education and personal development. Therefore, include personal-development investment in your budget. You can enrol in online courses that build your skills and set you apart from the rest of the applicants. Alternatively, you could invest in polishing your resume before distributing it to recruiters, hiring agencies, and companies. Think about getting a career coach or mentor to guide you to the next chapter of your career.


  • Create a professional narrative

Even if you choose to ignore and forget the layoff, the possibility of it coming up in your future interviews is still high. Therefore, take this time to create a professional narrative that explains the time gap in your resume. Make it honest and practice in front of mirrors so that when it comes up during interviews, the words flow out of you like clockwork.

For example, instead of saying, “I was laid off,” say, “My previous employer had restructured the company.” Follow this up with a breakdown of the skills and experience accumulated during the time gap.


Additionally, to bounce back from a layoff, you might want to apply these tips:


  1. Increase your visibility on job portals and social platforms - Hit the ground running by networking, and reaching out to previous colleagues and friends. Boost your skills by attending seminars and workshops. 

  2. Take care of yourself - Don’t neglect yourself. Your physical and mental health should be top of your priority list. Get enough rest, sleep, and food, and don’t shut yourself away from the world. Reconnect with your loved ones every chance you get.

  3. Identify your core skills - What is your skill set? Write down your skills and figure out how to enhance them as you prepare for future jobs.

  4. Be open to different employment opportunities - Don’t limit your job search to one industry. Skim through different businesses, positions, and industries. Skills are transferable across the board. Aim to impress them with the things you can do and the changes you can make in their industry or position.

  5. Think outside the box - Creativity will help you grab the attention of hiring managers and employers.

  6. Don’t limit yourself to a 9 to 5 job - Try out freelancing and part-time jobs. They can provide you with the experience, skills, and money to sustain you before you get your desired job.



After the initial shock of the layoff, you need to get up, dust yourself off, and keep moving. If you apply these five tips, you will be on the road to recovery in no time. All you need to do is adopt the right mindset, and you will bounce back from a layoff. Have you ever been laid off? Let us know how you managed to bounce back and build your career in the comments below.

Written by

Lilian Nerima Musonge

Nerima Musonge is a Lawyer who is passionate about Content Creation and Copywriting. She is constantly trying to broaden her artistic pursuits and find out how they can integrate with the law. When she is not squinting behind a laptop, she is mothering, cracking jokes, and living her best life

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