Woman stressed and going crazy pulling her hairIt happens to many people, and more especially during a downturn economy. Companies look for little ways they can let go of employees, and sometimes, it can come as a sudden shock for those employees. In fact many have no idea its coming until they are sitting in the office and hearing the ax fall. So what do you do when you suddenly find yourself fired?

 1. Go home and freak out (a little). It is perfectly normal for people to lose it a little bit when they realize they are no longer employed. Aside from the tears in the car ride home, a little bit of time where you freak out once you get home is fine as long as you avoid attempting to light any bridges on fire. Avoid the Internet or your cell phone or any other means of communicating with your old job and coworkers and take the day off to recover. Many will find themselves devastated for a few hours and then pensive, needing to clear their head. Go see a movie or take in a show, especially something comic or fantasy. Let your mind recuperate and you will feel better once you get a good night’s sleep.

2. Update your resume. Make sure you update your resume to reflect your now available status. Contact some old employers and make sure you have good references. Review each thing that you have listed on your resume and make sure that it is actually relevant to the job that you are trying to get, or at least that it is enough to intrigue the potential future employer. Remove things that are extremely out of date or that just don’t fit in with the rest of your resume. Unless you can find a way that an item specifically has to do with the career you are looking for, remove it from your resume.

 3. File for unemployment. There is so much shame attached to unemployment that is not necessary. The whole point is to help those who suddenly find themselves without gainful employment. File online and choose direct deposit and make sure you will survive until you see your next check come in. It is important that you keep on with your life. Progress is essential and you don’t want to get bogged down with stress, worry, and grief over losing your job. Just keep moving.

4. Get spruced up. You are going to be doing interviews soon, so doing some hair cutting, updating your glasses, or changing your wardrobe is a good idea. Looking good equates to confidence and that lands jobs more often than people think.

5. Don’t burn any bridges. One of the most important things that you can do after you have been fired is to make sure that you maintain relationships with as many people within your former company as possible. Though it may be tempting, do not burn any bridges. You never know when your name may come up in conversation and you want to ensure that what is being said is positive.

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