On March 20th, 2018 I celebrated year three of the layoff date. However, I was gainfully employed after a short 10 month self-imposed sabbatical, with a reintroduction into service date of January 15th, 2016. Many will wonder why I still commemorate this date and the reason is very simple: I started the blog right after the layoff came into effect. About 500 posts and original stories later, this exercise has changed my perspective and opened doors I had not considered into my creative mind. I became more aware of my strengths and development areas, part of which led me to move into a new home, adopt Zach and pursue and MBA.
Since my layoff and rehire episode, many of my friends have faced similar fates and have dealt with the news differently. Most have moved on to other companies or have been rehired, but a small percentage decided to venture out and start their own businesses. A smaller few decided to go back to school and earn a new degree to refocus and refire their careers. Sometimes being let go is the force that propels you to find your own path; to reach for the stars and dream because you realize you have nothing else to lose. It works out more times than not but having savings or unemployment benefits was definitely the safety that contributed to my eventual success.
If I had to do it all over again I would have not accepted the pay cut. The amount of money I left on the table for the benefit of a steady paycheck was extremely hard to make up. Between investments and loans we were able to get by but we are not even close to where we should be. The shock of realizing loyalty to my particular employer has not worked to my favor yet has been very daunting and demoralising. Mentors and outsiders see my worth and added value but can’t find a way to place me in a job role where I can shine. I don’t want to ride a desk for x amount of years to prove myself; I rather do that somewhere they do not know me because it will yield higher returns to impressed those who are not expecting me to overachieve.
While the managers work out how to best help me get to where I need to be, I’m still trying to find my north star, that one idea ignites the passion of a thousand suns, fueling a drive to make it happen whatever it is. The most effective motivator is our intrinsic desire to pursue a goal or find a purpose in life, and mine isn’t very clear. Navigating the change brought on by the ups and downs of loving and living in a world that offers us little control has opened my eyes to hundreds of possibilities. Need to narrow the scope a bit to commit to an end game. Not an easy task when the MBA and past experience make of the world my oyster. Time will tell on this one.
There must be more to this provincial life…