Career Calling

August 13, 2013

How to Handle a Layoff

A good friend’s son got unexpected bad news today.  His division is being disbanded, and he’ll be out of a job in six weeks.  When he called me, I worried about how he would be dealing with this misfortune.  I would have been angry, maybe even self-pitying (poor, poor me).

My friend’s son was the exact opposite.  While not happy, he was looking forward and even sounded excited about some jobs he had found online.  He told me that he was ready to try to apply his skills in some new ways, which will give him even more opportunity to find a new job quickly.

This incident reminds me of one of my favorite lessons from Viktor Frankl’s book Man’s Search for Meaning.  Frankl, a Holocaust survivor, says that we cannot control our fate.  What we can control is our attitude toward that fate.  My friend’s son has managed to stay positive even in the face of bad news.  That’s the best way to handle a layoff.


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