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How Redundancy Affects Your Confidence

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 27 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Redundant Redundancy Embarrased Angry

Redundancy can give your confidence a huge knock. In order to regain your confidence, you need to come to terms with being made redundant and take steps to get your professional life back on track.

Some people actually find that, after the initial shock of being made redundant and the inevitable feelings of anger and shame, they are able to move towards a career or lifestyle that suits them better than before. Redundancy can be the start of a new life full of adventures and opportunities that may not have come your way before.


Many people feel embarrassed about being made redundant – they think people are talking about them and don’t know what to say. Redundancy is all they can think of to talk about, yet they do not want people to know. They think that it somehow means they were not very good at their job, so they are embarrassed in front of their peers.


Redundancy is a stressful time because there are financial as well as emotional implications. Don’t just think these feelings will go away – if you continue to spend money as you did before, you will soon get yourself into a financial muddle, which will compound your stress. If you are finding it hard to get a new job, tighten your belts as much as possible. Work out what you need to pay all your bills and necessities each month and stick to it – it may be tempting to spend to make yourself feel good but this will bite you very quickly.


It is common to be more nervous about yourself and your abilities after you have been made redundant as you feel as though you were not good enough somehow. What is difficult is that you need to be at the top of your game to be able to secure another job. Try not to see this as something that has happened to you, more that redundancy is part of your working life.


It is perfectly understandable to be angry about the fact that you have been made redundant – especially if you were performing well in your role and/or had been employed there for many years. It feels as though your loyalty and hard work have been disregarded. Talk through your feelings with your friends and family and perhaps with other colleagues in the same position. You need to get the balance right between not bottling up your feelings of anger, in which case they will manifest elsewhere and talking too much. This can make you feel worse and does not help you move on.


The knock to your confidence when you are made redundant can make you question your capabilities in other areas of your life, too. This can be the cruellest part of redundancy because it makes it harder to fell good about yourself and your skills. Make sure you maintain a healthy diet with regular exercise as it can be too easy to stop bothering to cook balanced meals and stay in bed watching day time TV.

You are allowed a few days to feel sorry for yourself, but put a time limit on when you will dust yourself down. Tell your friends and family this date, too, so they can let you come round in your own time. If after a couple of weeks you still do not feel able to get back into the swing of things and start looking for new work, you will need to talk to your GP about underlying depression.

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