Redundancy: I Will Survive!

“Following the restructure of the department we cannot see a need for your role so unfortunately your job will be redundant at the end of April.”   

These words hit me like a bombshell  two weeks ago.   The firm is attempting to mitigate my redundancy by “redeployment” into one of a few internal vacancies which have to be kept open until March, when the final consultation period is finished and more staff are collateral damage  from the restructure.   Are you wondering why I was told weeks before the others, well I have asked that myself too, but no satisfactory answer has been offered.

Although everyone, from Human Resources, my Department Head, family and friends are  stressing  that redundancy is not personal it is a sad fact of the ever tightening financial purse, it jolly well does feel personal.

Phillip Hodson, a fellow of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy  calls redundancy “a social invitation to depression”.    “We all project on to our work a sense of family feeling.  It’s difficult to isolate the rejection in a rational way as due to the western economic cycle, the bastard in charge of hiring and firing, or bad luck,” he says. “We tend to see this as overwhelming evidence of our own failure rather than seeing the context”.

My life at the moment is full of highs and lows.   I am swinging from being really positive and thinking of exciting ways forward to  very low moments with an overwhelming  sense of panic about the future.

Losing your job through redundancy, like any loss,  gives rise to a necessary process of grief.

Initially there is shock and panic “How am I going to pay the bills and the mortgage?”  and the reaction that I just wanted  to bolt for the door, followed closely by denial – “This can’t possibly happen to me!”

Then there is anger and hurt.  Anger at  being selected as someone they can do without, regardless of the fact I was told it is the job that has to go and it is not personal.  Anger with those who have made one of the biggest decisions about my life and changing the course of my future.   Hurt by the  rejection and that the loyalty,  the care and the hard work I have put into my job has counted for nothing.

Then there is acceptance – what has happened has happened and now I have to deal with it and move forward, find a new job, or discover of ways of setting up my own business.

The final stage is actually moving forward, with a positive outlook not finding objects to prevent me moving on to my new life.

I have read lots of supportive articles on “How to Deal with Redundancy”  and found several uplifting points to take on board:-

1.  Do not take the alternative job your company may offer simply because you feel you have to.  If the job is not right for you, then move on and find something else.

2.  Redundancy is not something to be ashamed of.

3.  Remember all the times you have heard people say “that was the best thing that ever happened to me”.

4.  Every cloud has a silver lining.

I will survive, because that is what I am, a survivor.  Despite how rough the sea is, I will rise above it just like the kite surfer.

“First I was afraid
I was petrified
Kept thinking I could never live
without you by my side
But I spent so many nights
thinking how you did me wrong
I grew strong
I learned how to carry on…

…I know I will stay alive
I’ve got all my life to live
I’ve got all my love to give
and I’ll survive
I will survive”   

–  Gloria Gaynor