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Career Advice

From Marc Cenedella
Marc Cenedella

While I'll encourage you to make the most of August, get the jump on the other guy in December, and use the summer slowdown to your advantage, there are times when even fervent job geeks like me will advise you to take a load off and skip the job hunt.

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Editor’s Note: My Layoff, My Brain

TheLadders’ editor-in-chief shares his layoff story.

By Matthew Rothenberg
FILED UNDER: Work Life Balance.
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My name is Matthew, and I’m a layoff survivor.

I knew the day was coming for months. I understood the economic and operational realities at my company; I’d even directed some early phases of the downsizing. I’d started my job search well in advance (including signing up with TheLadders). I’d built a solid landing pad that included plenty of contract work and some pre-planning with my family. I’d even started moving personal effects discreetly out of my office … Shades of “The Great Escape”!

But there’s no way to prepare completely for the moment when you’re told to box up your stuff, turn in your equipment and leave the premises. The anxiety and self-doubt it provokes need to be respected – and channeled in positive ways.

In my case, my regimen included visits to the family doctor, who did indeed diagnose and medicate mild hypertension. It meant monitoring my daily routine to stay busy and engaged with the rest of the working world. And it meant keeping very close tabs on warning signs of depression.

The result? My time “between engagements” was one of the most rewarding of my adult life. I kept money coming in, and I had a real opportunity to re-engage with my family (the real reason for that paycheck).

In this package, veteran writer and editor Debra Donston-Miller asks certified experts in the mental-health field to identify precisely what we layoff survivors are likely to experience when the axe falls. While no single report will address every question, we hope these articles can start a dialogue with our readers about the tools they need to turn these universal, human impulses into fuel for new triumphs.

Matthew Rothenberg is the Editorial Director of TheLadders.

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