What Are the Psychological Effects of Being Fired?

August 11, 2023
August 11, 2023 Terkel

What Are the Psychological Effects of Being Fired?

To delve into the psychological impact of job loss, we’ve gathered six profound insights from professionals ranging from a Senior Content Specialist to a Founder. These experts share their personal experiences, starting from a journey of grief and self-discovery to recognizing the situation as a blessing in disguise. Join us as we explore these deeply personal narratives and the lessons learned from them.

  • Journey of Grief and Self-Discovery
  • From Disappointment to Entrepreneurship
  • Loss of Identity and Search for Meaning
  • Lessons in Resilience and Adaptability
  • Overcoming Grief and Learning from Mistakes
  • A Blessing in Disguise

Journey of Grief and Self-Discovery

Yes, I’ve been in a situation where I was let go, and it had quite an impact on me. I first went through various states of grief, namely: denial, anger, depression, and acceptance. Initially, I couldn’t understand how this could happen to me. I was an excellent employee who gave 100% of myself and had a great relationship with my colleagues and manager.

Because of a merger, I’d been fired through no fault of my own, and suddenly I felt like I had lost a part of my identity. Unemployed, I dreaded meeting new people who’d ask me about my line of work.

When my depression worsened, I took a six-month sabbatical to take a step back and rediscover my career aspirations. Taking that time off led me to think through fresh paths that resonated better with my values and strengths. With renewed confidence, I found a new job and even started a freelance business on the side.

Naturally, this journey wasn’t an easy process, but it helped me build resilience and find a renewed sense of direction.

Sebastian MorganSebastian Morgan
Senior Content Specialist, CV Genius

From Disappointment to Entrepreneurship

Only once, at the beginning of my job journey, was I let go. Even though it wasn’t about my work being bad, I felt really down. I asked myself, “Why me? Could I have done something different to avoid it?” Looking back now, I can see that this experience pushed me to start my own business.

Martin PotockiMartin Potocki
CEO, Jobera

Loss of Identity and Search for Meaning

As I have experienced myself, being fired can cause profound personal upheaval. When we lose our jobs, it can feel like we’ve also lost a part of ourselves because of how integral they are to our identity.

When you lose your job, you lose the routine, purpose, and social relationships that it gave you. While you’re working through the process of finding new meaning in your life outside of your prior role, you may feel a void inside of you.

Cindi KellerCindi Keller
Communications Coordinator, The Criminal Defense Firm

Lessons in Resilience and Adaptability

In my previous role as a content writer, I encountered firsthand challenges because of my former company’s struggles with low sales and financial difficulties. The circumstances indirectly pressured me to be cautious, fearing any misstep could lead to termination.

After being fired, I went through a range of feelings, including disappointment, fear, and worry about my future. But I could also learn and develop from this experience. It taught me the significance of resilience and adaptability in an ever-changing industry. As a result, I emerged from this adversity as a more robust and capable professional.

Faizan KhanFaizan Khan
Sr. Content Marketing Specialist, UBUY Australia

Overcoming Grief and Learning from Mistakes

Yes, I’ve been fired once, and the fault was completely on my side. I was a new hire and didn’t adopt the culture well, which eventually troubled my boss. This resulted in grief and a loss of hope in everything for a while.

As a young person, it was an obvious reaction to feel that way; however, with the right people by your side, you learn to overcome the feeling of getting fired quickly. I handled my grief and analyzed what went wrong by keeping everything honest and clear. So, I engaged in thoughtful evaluation and took steps to rectify my mistakes, ensuring not to repeat them in future jobs.

Jasen EdwardsJasen Edwards
Real Estate Agent and Coach, Agent Advice

A Blessing in Disguise

What better way to get fired than by an infamous CEO who wasted billions of dollars? This is my story.

A small Amazon FBA company I was part of was purchased by Adam Neumann to head WeWork’s retail ambitions. After about 11 months of disarray, they fired us all (to avoid us vesting our shares).

Honestly, the company was such an absolute disaster that even in the meeting with the HR lady (excuse me: “People Team”), I was elated. Working for such a disastrous and disorganized company was stressful as hell and hardly fun.

I probably would have never quit since that was too scary, but being fired from WeWork was the best thing that ever happened to me. Six years later, I run a seven-figure online coaching company.

Hayim PinsonHayim Pinson
Founder, Muscle and Brawn

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