The 7 Stages of Grieving the Loss of Your Job

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You know the saying, “When God closes a door, he opens a window?”

That was my husband’s opening line as he began telling me he would no longer be employed as of April 1st of this year.  There are so many things that can go through your head at a moment like this.  I would say these thoughts and emotions are similar to the stages of grief, only in fast forward.

Stage 1- Shock and Denial:

My initial reaction was to say, “Well, that was unexpected!  Why, what happened?”

Stage 2- Pain and Guilt:

My next thought and feeling was one of sadness.  I was thinking of how much my husband loved his job and how much he would miss the guys he worked with.  I wondered if there was something he could have done to prevent the lay off.  And, I began thinking of the pain that this may cause for us financially.

Stage 3- Anger and Bargaining:

This stage was brief yet profound.  I was trying to wrap my mind around why this lay off even happened.  I wanted to say, “Why would they do this to you?  After all you’ve done for that company!  How can we make them see how valuable you are?”  Even though I knew the answer to those questions, they were still rolling around in my mind.  I knew that my husband’s boss loved him and knew exactly what he was worth.  That was the main reason they had to let him go.  They couldn’t afford to pay him what he was worth.

Stage 4- Depression and Reflection:

After dwelling on the information I had just received, a wave of sadness suddenly overtook me.  I began thinking about the coming months.  A million questions flooded my mind.  What if he doesn’t find a job by April 1st?  What if we have to move?  What does God have in store for us?  Will it be a step down or a step up for him?  I just didn’t know, and that was depressing.

Moving on…

Stage 5- Turning a Corner:

I began to pray about our situation and look at it in a different light.  The Lord helped me to see the good in what had just happened.  We began trusting God for the outcome and began moving forward.

Stage 6- Reconstruction:

Once we had our thinking caps on strait, I began helping my husband update his resume and design his new portfolio.  His boss, who wants to see him get settled into a new job before April 1st, helped him make his resume stand out.  The excitement has been building as I see his portfolio come to life.  I still can’t believe what he is capable of creating when it comes to web design.  He truly has been blessed with a remarkable talent for design and development.  And, I’m not just saying that because he is my husband.  Once he has his portfolio done, you can see it by going to www.jesseleedesign.com.

Stage 7- Hope:

After seeing the beginnings of his amazing portfolio, my thoughts began to shift into positive overload.  We began to think of some possible jobs he would qualify for as a web designer/developer.  Maybe he would make more money than he had been making before.  Maybe we would be able to move into a bigger home.  We could start giving more to our church and other missions.  Maybe his new job would pay for his continued education.  There were many positive outcomes.  We had hope for the future.

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