What To Do When You Lose Your Job: 6 Tips to Cope

Many can relate to how irritating and depressing it feels to suddenly wake up and find oneself out of a job. Losing your job (for any reason) isn’t always a savoury experience. While getting relieved of your job is a big issue, the single most important factor to your growth in this case is how you react to getting the pink slip.

Here, we explore 6 things you should do when you find yourself out of a job. These are tips to get you prepared for the next phase of your life and ensure that the setback of losing your job doesn’t derail your career growth and personal success.

Don’t Panic

Yes, losing your job is stressful and puts an end to an immediate source of income, but one thing you shouldn’t do is let anxiety overcome you. There are always options available when this happens. You should keep a cool head and plan your way out of the situation. You will not be able to make headway if you don’t have a clear head and an open mind.

A calm head can even help you gain some positives from the negative process of losing your job as this brief story shows. A woman who just lost her job instead of letting anger take hold of her sat down in her office and used her last hour to type a very persuasive letter to the HR Head showing why she deserved 3 months instead of 2 weeks severance pay. She got paid 3 months severance! she had extra funds for her to go with while hunting for a new job.

Take Stock

That time when you lose your job is the time to pause and take a critical look at the state of your affairs. What is your financial situation like? Do you have enough savings to last you a few months while you get your act together? This is probably the time when your bad saving habits catch up with you if you have very little to survive on. Taking stock of your financial and career situation will help you determine which options are open for you to pursue.

Explore Your Options

When you lose your job in your 20s, it is a very different ball game from when you find yourself out of a job in your 50s. Factors like age, financial status, personal ambition (maybe you’ve been nursing the dream to set up your own business venture) can all play a part in deciding the options you may follow.

Age may not be on your side and as a result the more viable options open to you may be self employment or starting a business. You need to sit and look at possible options open to you to pick up your life and get on with it.

Dust Up Your CV

If you feel you still got a chance to try your hand at another job then it’s time to take a look at that C.V. If you are like most people who are relatively comfortable in their last job, your C.V is probably in a neglected state, with no updates on achievements and educational qualifications. Take a look at that C.V once again and give it a good polishing. You can try some expert help with re-writing your CV.

Hone Your Skills and Identify other Possible Organizations to Work For

Depending on your career path, you will need to identify current and useful skills which you need to acquire, or improve on to brighten your chances at the job search market.

Also, depending on your level of career progression, your job search should now be a bit more targeted. This means you have some idea of the possible organisations you will be aiming to work for. This, of course, is based on relevance to your specialization. Getting the specifics will help you do the next thing you need to do to get a job offer (aside from searching online).

Network Strategically (offline and online)

Your network most times indicate how quickly your career path rises. Networking doesn’t mean harassing anybody you meet asking them to give you a job. It is, rather, a smart engaging of relevant people towards availing yourself of every opportunity for career advancement. Below are a few tips on networking you can use;

– Reach out to new contacts to introduce yourself and ask them if they have time to talk with you about their career path.
– Always ask new contacts interesting questions about their career path. Don’t let the focus be on you at first.
– Ask for advice, don’t ask for a job. They will know you are looking and if they can and want to help in this way they will.
– Ask if they know anyone else you can contact.
– Networking is about engaging your existing contacts as well as cultivating new relationships.
– Follow up. Follow their advice. Send thank you notes.

Find reviews of what it is like to work in over 200 Nigerian companies on Ngcareers. Join Ngcareers free


  1. Adewunmi says:

    Hi Paul,
    thanks for the write up “6 tips to cope with lossing your job” it’s really encouraging. I lost my job in January this year and still trying to get myself together, applied to targeted organisation that are involved In the same operations as my previous job but no responses yet..hopeful though.

    Quick question, do you think it’s okay to network with people via LinkedIn requesting for assistance to get a job?

  2. Paul says:

    Regards your question; No don’t connect with people on Linkedin and start asking for assistance. It more or less pisses people off because at that point they hardly know you. Your focus then should be to start getting active and showcasing your quality in issues related to your career area of interest. It is far more effective to be strategic instead of asking for job referral from your connections

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.