How to bounce back after losing your job

Written by: Georgina Bloomfield
Published on: 3 Aug 2016

People lose their jobs for a variety of reasons. Whether it’s due to an end of contract, redundancy or because you’ve been fired, if you lose your job you’re most likely going to need another one (and soon). It’s always very disappointing to leave a job that you like or if you simply don’t want to leave for other reasons. We never like the rug pulled out from under our feet and usually humans don’t react well to immediate change. The trick to getting a good job quickly after being so suddenly disappointed is knowing how to channel any negative or bad energy you have into your search for a new job. It’s all about how you deal with the sudden setback that measures your success in getting a good new job after the loss of one. Here are my tips on how to bounce back:


Use the time wisely

You may suddenly have become a lot less busy in your day to day life. If you’ve had to leave your job quite quickly, you may like a week or so off to yourself initially before starting a new job search. This is both a good idea and a fatal error. Be careful not to become complacent with this free time. It’s great to be able to relax and have some ‘time off’, but you should be dedicating the same amount of time to your new job search as you did when you were working. A new job won’t appear overnight and a lot of job searching can mean waiting to hear back from people. Whilst you’re waiting however, try to make the most of this time. Don’t get too carried away with staying in bed all day.

Tap into your network. If you don’t have one, get one

A brilliant use of time whilst you’re waiting to hear back from potential employers is to make contact with the right people. If you can, go on courses or to events being held in your industry. Recruitment events happen regularly but you may have to be willing to travel to go to them. Sometimes a long train ride can be worth it if it means you’ve left the event with a handful of business cards which could lead to new opportunities.

Get an attitude change

It’s easy to concentrate on your emotions when you suddenly lose your job. Whether it’s anger, regret, sadness or annoyance, you need to try and get yourself free of these negative emotions. If you’re surrounding yourself with fellow negative people then you’ll get sucked into a chasm of failure. You’ll feel like a failure and you won’t want to try again. If you lost your job due to performance issues, then accept what’s done is done and you need to learn from your experiences and move on. If economic reasons were why you lost your job, then you need to learn that it was a situation that was out of control and it happens to people every day all over the world.

This should probably be one of the most important tips on the list, but accepting that you’re not going to go back to the job you’ve just lost is vital. Do not let any resentment get in the way of finding your next opportunity. Perhaps it was never the best job for you anyway. Some people really need a push out of a job that they’ve become too comfortable in. Sometimes this push can be a really good thing.

Make your CV and cover letter positive

You don’t want to allow any bad feeling towards your previous job leak out into your search for a new one. Make sure your CV highlights all of your strengths and achievements from your previous post – so much so that the potential employer will be wondering why you lost your job in the first place.

Maintain a good routine outside of your job search

When our routines get disrupted, we can become unfocused. Make sure you still sleep and eat at the same time during your unemployment so you don’t get affected too much by the change that’s happened in your life. Going to bed late and eating loads of junk food won’t help you stay on track. Try to exercise when you can too. Perhaps you can learn some new skills with the extra time or take part in some volunteering. These are all things you can put on your CV to impress your next employer.

We all deal with bad news in different ways. It’s how we actually act on the news we get that determines our success. You can either feel like a complete failure and give up or focus that energy into your job hunt. Let’s face it; you’re going to have to get another job anyway so you may as well bypass the wallowing!