Yesterday, I sat in the back seat of my friend’s car, heading to the city for a birthday dinner. During our forty-minute drive, the five of us had enough time to catch up.
We were enjoying our time, with great music, silly stories and lots of laughter. At some point, my friend turned to me and happily said: “By the way, you know what?
I finally managed to get myself fired!”
We hadn’t seen each other for several weeks, so I wasn’t expecting this. I looked at him in surprise, with a big smile on my face and said: “Congratulations, that’s awesome news! I am so happy for you.”
Sorry, what? He got fired and you’re glad?
So, now you might be thinking that we are out of our minds. Getting fired is awful. You should panic.
Oh my god! I got fired, this must mean I suck.
How will I get by and what if I don’t get another job? And what will everybody think of me? Nothing good, I guess. This is so embarrassing.
.Why did this happen to me? This is so depressing…
It doesn’t have to be a bad thing
My friend is thirty and a sales engineer. He got promoted to senior sales manager last year and didn’t like this job at all.
Every time we saw each other, we talked about work, and his distant desire to become a certified yoga instructor.
He was doing okay at his job, but his heart wasn’t in it. This is why his company eventually let him go.
Now, he can concentrate on his dream, become a yoga teacher and see if he can make a living from it. It’s the best thing that happened to him.
In June, he’s going abroad for an intense, certifying yoga class, which lasts several weeks. This is only possible because he has
- All the free time in the world
- Some savings
- No choice to make, i.e. no risk to take
Right, that’s not my case, though
Yes, in a way, he’s lucky. He doesn’t have a family to support, he’s well-educated and has enough money to pay for this intense class without going broke.
Depending on the country you live in, unemployment benefits will also vary or be almost non-existent.
Getting fired allows you to think about what you really want in life.
Of course, no one wants to worry about money or how to support his or her family, but losing your job can be freeing.
If you dream about doing something else, now is the time to get going.
- See this as an opportunity to reinvent yourself
- Use your free time to research or learn as much as you can about your project
- Invest in yourself and take classes
- Write down all the tasks you handled in every job and at home
- List the soft skills you needed
Don’t underestimate your value
It will surprise you how many things you wrote down. We often fixate on education and don’t realize that we have quite some experience.
Many principles can easily be applied in other areas or jobs as well.
The method might not be the same, but the idea behind it is.
Never underestimate your potential and versatility.
Of course, some employers don’t care
Twelve years ago, I wanted to enlist as a tutor with a tutoring service in France. They turned me down because they only “take on tutors who have at least a Bachelor’s degree”.
That was their “guarantee” for quality and is completely arbitrary. And we’re not talking about a Bachelor’s in education, which would be an acceptable rule.
To this day, I think this is ridiculous. I was a language tutor for two years in high school, and told the company, that I would gladly take an official test to prove I was good enough.
Nope! No diploma, no tutoring. I don’t know about you, but I would prefer a native speaker if I had the choice…
In the meantime, I not only got a Bachelor’s, but a Master’s degree in Marketing and International Management.
Have my language skills improved thanks to that? No! Fluent is fluent, especially for tutoring 9th graders.
But back to you
If something like this happens to you, you have to decide if this really is the job you want. If you do, you can either persist and try other companies that might be more open-minded.
Or you can acknowledge that you are missing some important qualifications and take classes, try to get an internship or find other ways to fill this gap.
In any case, if you lost your job, you have a huge advantage. You don’t have to worry about “what if I quit my job to follow my passion and it doesn’t work out?”
This perceived risk can paralyze us for years. We hope things will get better if we just hold on a little longer.
And all of a sudden, months or even years have passed.
You have nothing to lose! Appreciate this opportunity and make the best of it! And click on the link if you’d like a positive story about an exciting job application.
Improve yourself. Improve your life!
As always, your thoughts on this are more than welcome. You never know who you can help by simply sharing…
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