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Managing Your Finances Following a Job Layoff

| January 04, 2019

Layoffs are often stressful for everyone involved: company officials, the workers who retain their jobs, and especially the newly unemployed.

The experience for workers, however, can be particularly devastating. The emotional effects of a layoff may include anxiety, shock, irritability, anger, frustration, sadness, fear, loss of enjoyment or appreciation, feelings of worthlessness, loss of self-esteem, and shame.[i]

Physical reactions may include fatigue, headaches, weight loss or gain, sleep problems, upset stomach, muscle pain, or nausea.

Others, on the other hand, may feel a sense of liberty if they found their job onerous or unproductive.

Layoffs also often alter the attitudes or behaviors of remaining workers.[ii] While those who retain their employment may view their job situations with optimism over the possibility of new career opportunities, others seem to hold a dimmer and sometimes gloomier opinion of their long-term financial security. With altered work environments, employees who keep their jobs may feel a shift in the workplace atmosphere.

Looking Ahead

If you’ve been recently laid off from your job, you need to take certain steps to ensure both your financial and emotional health remains intact.

Here are five steps to consider:[iii]

  1. How much are you spending not just on regular budgeted expenses like mortgage and car payments, but on everyday items? Examine your grocery bill, your utility and insurance payments, and the other smaller expenses.
  2. Postpone the big expenditures. You may want to wait to buy a new car or that big-screen TV. Look into consolidating credit card debt into a single, low interest rate loan.
  3. Talk about your severance package. Many new workers discuss severance packages at the start of employment. It’s still not too late to broach the subject with your former employer.
  4. Use the available programs. The government and community organizations provide assistance for people who have lost their jobs. Take advantage of whatever services are available, especially unemployment compensation and career development services.
  5. If during your search you can’t find your dream job or even full-time employment, take part-time work in the interim. The job will allow you to generate income as you continue looking.

One of the most important habits to develop during this time in your life is proper money management. Getting your finances and your budget in order is important as you look for work and for the future. Proper financial planning will equip and prepare you to maintain a steady course through life.

If you would like to discuss your current financial needs, we’re happy to talk.