Last November, I was one of the millions of Americans that got caught up in the “downsizing” mentality of Corporate America. And I found myself out of work for the first time since I was 15 years old. Weird.
I completely understood the business case behind the decision, and I certainly wasn’t the only one who got hit. And, as it came in a pretty financially stable time in my life, plus I got a decent severance package, I was not unduly upset, putting aside the fact that no one likes to get “dumped.” Frankly, I was kind of excited about it, as I felt like I hit a moment in time where I could reevaluate my career. A crossroads where I was lucky enough to have some very different choices available to me.
And I do realize how lucky I am. The other folks who were laid off with me were in different circumstances and pushed toward different decisions. Hell, I know there are people out there who have lost their jobs and been sent into financial ruin. I have the greatest respect for those folks who have pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and rebuilt their lives. And I thanked my lucky stars every day that I had some time and space to be choosy in my next role.
As I started looking for the next corporate job, I did a lot of networking, and with people in somewhat related fields but totally outside of the corporate world. I also looked at – and took on – a couple of freelancing jobs. I did look for corporate jobs as well, but with very specific criteria about the roles and responsibilities each jobs. And given that I am a “woman of my age,” I spent some time thinking further down line toward retirement. What could I do now to set myself up for some part-time work to stay busy when I do retire?
But I also used this gift of time to do more personal things. This blog is a great example of doing things that I enjoy but never had time to pursue. My house finally feels clean and much more organized. I finally had some time and energy to really look at what we had in this house that we really didn’t need or use anymore…and never would. And I feel more of sense of peace now that my environment is more peaceful.
So overall, I have been pretty darn happy with how this has played out. And I decided early on that I was going to leave future in the hands of the fates. I decided that “what was supposed to be would be.” If I was meant to start my own freelance business, that would become clear. If I was meant to go back to the corporate world, then I would get the “right” job offer.
And that’s what happened. The “right” job was offered and, with a little negotiation, was accepted. I start today. I’m a little nervous, as anyone would be starting anew job, but I’m also excited because of the possibilities it offers. And I’m going into a great situation, with good people that I already know.
Heigh-ho, heigh-ho, it’s off to work I go.