Getting laid….off?

I’m sure you’ve all see the exciting news that Turner is laying off a giant chunk of its employees this week.  This has prompted some worried texts, phone calls, DMs and e-mails from y’all.  Firstly thank you for caring, kumbaya, and group hug.  Secondly, we’ve all been aware of this upcoming chopping-block party for a while, so we’ve had plenty of time to get used to the idea of being unemployed and drunk in our underwear by noon on weekdays.

I’m kidding.  Sort of…Obviously many of us have mortgages and kids, so it’s not exactly a chill time for us.  Adding to our festival of nerves is this:  even if we do survive the cuts, we’ll be saying good-bye to friends and colleagues we’ve worked with for many years.  Sad face.  Specifically and with very few exceptions, I’ve been spending the majority of my days with the same people for nine years.  It’s longer than I’ve ever lived in any home – it’s even longer than I was married.  Likewise, those of us left behind will be assuming the work of those who are asked to leave.  Wee…We don’t even need to get into the notion that getting laid off usually makes people feel completely worthless for at least 11-19 minutes, which is no fun either.  It’s like being dumped, except you get paid for a little while afterward, and you get to keep your insurance long enough to stock up on meds to manage your new depression.

BUT, I have fabulous news!  There’s an official game that completely eliminates terror from uncertainty.  My dear friend Mona Bliss introduced it to me many years ago.  It’s called the “What If…?  And Then What?” game.  It prompts you to assume your worst nightmare will happen (in this case losing one’s job), then guides you through all the awful things you imagine will happen (possibilities are limitless depending on how creative and macabre one is), and then ultimately makes you realize you’ll live through all those things, and probably even thrive!  You can play the game with any situation.  The only rules are:  you have to start out positive, and no matter how ugly it gets in the middle, you have to keep playing until it ends up positive.

My game results looked like this:

What if I get laid off?

Then I will find another job I like even better, earning more money – hooray!

What if I don’t find another job?

Then I will continue my job search and take advantage of not having to be in an office 40-50 hours a week. I will be open to networking opportunities that only exist if I’m out in the world i.e. learn a new hobby or perfect a favorite one, take a class I’ve always wanted to take, go to a city I’ve always wanted to visit, or volunteer at a place I’ve wanted to support but never had time.

What if I have trouble making ends meet?

Then I will downsize, knowing I’ll be in even better financial shape once I’m earning a regular salary again.

What if I run out of money?

Then I will sell all my possessions, couch-surf through Europe, and write a book about resilience, dwarves on unicycles, and elephant shit.

What if that fails and I end up homeless and hungry?

Impossible. I have boobs.

No seriously.  What if I end up in a cardboard box under a bridge?

Impossible.  I have over 500 Facebook friends, which translates into at least 500 days of free housing and snacks – yay!

AND, if I count all my blogging friends, that’s another 13 years of housing and snacks – extra yay!

Thusly, even if I do lose my job this week:

I will never sleep outside unless it’s on purpose.

I will never go hungry unless I’m on a diet.

I will never be naked in public unless I drink too much tequila and make an irresponsible bet.

Game over.

I will be okay.

Are you dealing with any uncertainty in your world right now?  How do you cope with it?

Comments

  1. NotAPunkRocker says:

    Your “If I get laid off list” sounds like my “what if I have no choice but to walk away” list.

    Fingers crossed that everything works out for you and your colleagues.

  2. Good luck to you! I’ve gone through the rounds of choppity-bye. never fun.

    Something I heard years ago is “hope for the best, prepare for the worst”. I’ve always thought that was good advice.

  3. When Microsoft laid me off 3 years ago, I felt like I’d suffered a loss. Seriously, I went into mourning, that’s how much I self-actualized through my work, my title, my sizeable paycheque. It took 2.5 years to find the ‘right fit’ for my next gig — one that wouldn’t suck the life blood from me and require me to be on 24/7 (a requirement of the sizeable paycheque and the crazy culture). I can honestly say, 3 years later, that the lay off was the best thing that could have happened to me. I’m in a much healthier place today.

    • Wow that is some serious stuff right there! I’m so happy to hear you ended up in a great place. This is great news!!! Thank you for sharing such a positive spin : )

  4. I am dealing with uncertainty – I have no idea where I am moving once I graduate in May. But the uncertainty excites me! I guess I deal with it by knowing being willing to move just about anywhere to get the job I want will probably make me happy…and the thought of living in a new area sounds like fun. 🙂

  5. You can totally crash at my house. I’m a trust-worthy internet friend! I think everyone deals with uncertainty as an adult. I cope by wasting my time on Pinterest, browsing upbeat quotes in fancy script. Ha! Serious.

  6. I’ve got my fingers crossed for you. Situations like this suck, but hopefully you land on your feet no matter what happens.

  7. No matter what happens, I have no doubt your positive perspective and sense of humor will have you landing on your feet. Plus, as you mentioned, you have boobs. But don’t land on those.

    • Aww thanks, Ned! It will all be okay : ) Thanks for the tip – I’ll be real careful not to fall on my boobs. The good news is they’re real – so at least I don’t have to worry about one of them bursting if I do…

      • That puts all of our fears at ease.

        On a serious note, I have a feeling we’re similar in our approach to life and don’t see dead ends, only detours to places we may not have explored otherwise. I can thank detours for my writing career and amazing wife. Oh, and my latest haircut.

      • Yes! Life’s detours many, many times end up putting us exactly where we’re supposed to be. Apparently, I’m supposed to be exactly at my desk for the time being. My detour to a new stylist however did not end as well as yours obvsiously did. Dammit!

  8. I love your positive attitude, Molly. All the best to you and your co-workers. It’s such a tough situation. Fingers crossed it all works out for the best.

  9. Good stuff!

  10. I haven been thinking about your plight PLENTY but didn’t think it was my place to break through that fourth wall and send you a best-wishes email. Hope you’re okay. I’ve been laid off and it is NO FUN. Amy is right. You’re attitude will save you.

  11. Tammy Turk says:

    Molly, just remember, you were raised for this kind of thing – and I quote, “Girls, grab your things, I smell smoke”. XO and what Ned said – don’t fall on your boobs.

  12. “I’ve got boobs” – snort laugh 🙂

  13. This reminds me of “Sonnet XIII” in Sonnets to Orpheus by Rainer Maria Rilke, specifically “Be ahead of all parting, as though it already were behind you.”
    I’m one who imagines every possible circumstance that could happen as a result of whatever pending change I’m moving towards. For me, doing this, doing what you are doing here, gives me something solid to hold on to. In my mind I’ve already gone through it, so I’m better equipped to react in the reality. Or at least that’s what I tell myself.
    Good luck Molly. I hope this is all in vain and you don’t end up standing in the severance line.

  14. So your child would be living with his other parent, if you are couch-surfing in Europe? Or would you take her with you? (Now, that would teach her a lot about life, about geography, about languages – even about maths – when the two of you stand singing Country songs in the shopping miles of Europe and have to make ends meet with the money they pay you to stop …)

  15. Great post. I got side tracked at “boobs” and had to go photo stalk you on facebook, but I bet the rest was pretty good too.

  16. You’re always welcome to crash at the DOAT house for multiple days, but I’ll ask that you not touch the tequila as Mrs. DOAT frowns on hot naked women being in my yard. She’s never said that, but I’m assuming that’s the case. Don’t forget that you’re awesome and talented, so you’ll have no worries finding another job. Still, I hope you remain employed where you are because Squidbillies.

  17. Amazing post. Because you’re a fab writer. And you wanna know what happens to fab writers who lose their jobs and end up five minutes away from a deluxe cardboard box for one? They write the next great American novel, that’s what. Or maybe it’s Harry Potter they write. So I’m wishing you luck to NOT lose your job, but I’m holding out for the next great American novel if you do. Desperation+talent= masterpiece. Good luck!

  18. Oh maaannnnnnn…
    That’s just friction’ awesome!

    I wish I had boobs…
    He typed wistfully…

  19. Well done darlin’. Sending you tons of love and courage in the face of change. I agree with jgroeber…two friends of mine finished novels as a result of getting laid off. They didn’t end up homeless nor did they have to rely on their boobs for anything other than what we always rely on boobs for…flotation. Love you madly.

    • Hahahaha – flotation. Love it! Turns out I’m safe (found out yesterday at the end of the day – hooray!). Thank you for your love and encouragement. You’re the best! XO

  20. Awesome! As for me – I hate my job (I”m sure you’ve noticed), can’t afford to quit unless I get a seriously great offer and the past 2 weeks have tempted me to KILL our receptionist (she hung up on me TWICE!). How do I deal? Well, THIS for one, Twitter, and my blog. Without my blog and all the great folks I’ve chatted with this past year, I’d probably need actual therapy! Oh, and job-searching while my bosses ignore me. 😉

  21. I do have much uncertainty in my world right now. So to cope, I drink copious amounts of liquor, take looooooong bubble baths and hunker down with my fur balls.
    Crossing fingers, toes and legs that your job will remain in tact for you. If it goes the other way, you’re more than welcome to come and reside on our leopard couch while you eat bon bons! 🙂

    • Hahahaha – oh lady you’re the best!!! I’ve since published another post saying I got the call from my VP at the end of the day yesterday saying I’m safe!!! I still have my job yay! However, if that ever changes, I’m totally coming to crash on your awesome leopard print sofa. We’ll drink copious amount of liquor together : ) XO

      • Yeehaw on keeping the job! I say in celebration you come over and stay on the leopard couch just so we can toast your job safety with copious amounts of liquor and snacks! C’mon!

      • I love snacks. And I’m thinking about the bubble bath. Wearing bathing suits of course so people don’t get the right I mean wrong impression ; )

  22. This made me lol! Reminds me of one of my favourite bits from on the road. Dean and Sal are j chilling in the back of the car relaxed, while these other dudes are stressing out driving in the front. They all end up at the same destination. Point being you can stress and freak or go with it, either way things eventually turn out OK. Anyway loved the post! 🙂

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    Getting laid….off? – Mollytopia

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