Coping with redundancy – Thoughts and Today with Claire Byrne appearance

As those who follow me on Instagram will know, this year I face redundancy.

It’s part of a global plan, a corporate restructure that I’ve known about for some time.

Finding out, and the ensuing media coverage was tough going, it brought a real sense of disbelief. But I liked my job, I’m in my late 40s and had thought I’d stay with the same company for years. But here I am, 47 and wondering do I need to reinvent myself and whether cover letters are still necessary.

Redundancy is awkward. I’ve been here before, in very different circumstances. Back then I had two toddlers, a lot of bills, and the job market in my industry was non existent where I lived. The solution then was I ended up commuting 3.5 hours per day, which I did for 4 years. If ever an example of survival mode was needed I look back to those days. I was permanently exhausted.

These days work from home is prevalent, the jobs market is grand, and apparently opportunities abound.

And Opportunities. Everyone keeps telling me about them. It sounds like it’s a bad thing not to want to want to grasp them and propel myself headlong into the unknown. (Frozen 2 fans are you singing in your head?) But I wasn’t looking for an opportunity, it’s being foisted on me.

I don’t want to start a singing career or open my own café. I’d love to study an area that I’d enjoy, but there are bills to pay and a life outside work to live.

A few months ago a colleague reminded me that you need challenges in life but that they don’t have to be in your career, they can be in other areas that you genuinely love and feel passionate about. It was a lightbulb moment for me. I push myself to sea dip, to lift weights, to coach GAA, all things I love. It doesn’t have to be about work.

So, the pressure I was putting on myself to make life changing choices has eased, and I’m ready to see what opportunities present themselves.

But first, I’ve promised myself the month of April off – to reset, to wallow, and most likely to sort out my wardrobe and do several sea dips. What an opportunity!

I spoke about this with Claire Byrne and Sinéad Brady, career psychologist on RTÉ Radio One yesterday. Listen here

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