Losing your job is a blow to your ego and can be downright scary. The first instinct may be to do anything possible to change your situation. However, this is the time to contemplate carefully before talking too much or running away. Managing your transition may be one of the most challenging, but pivotal parts of managing your career. Do resist the urge to do these things after a pink slip;
1. Don’t tell the whole world what happened. It may be tempting to call friends, family and colleagues and share your story as well as your interpretation of what happened. Be cautious, as this is the beginning of your job search process. As much as you may be upset or angry, the message you deliver will be hard to change once you cool off and can think more clearly. Keep your communication about the events of your dismissal to those closest to you, who you can trust to keep your story confidential until you decide what your formal leaving message is going to be.
2. Don’t apply for a new role online the next day. You may be anxious about getting a new role quickly, getting back into the game and generating an income soon. You want to submit or post your resume to every job board and social media site to make yourself feel better. Take a deep breath first. Your time may be better spent taking stock of what you liked about your previous role and what kind of challenges you’d like most in the next one. Does your resume reflect the message you want a prospective employer to receive? This is an opportune time to make some personal choices and maybe even a shift in career direction. Make sure you know what your criteria are before you click “submit.”
3. Don’t panic. You’re no doubt shocked, if not surprised at your new employment status. Thoughts of worst case scenarios such as, “I’ll never work again” may be coursing through your brain. It can be tough to calm your anxious thoughts, but the smartest thing you can do right now is exactly that. Start with reviewing your finances and severance package with your finance person. Having an accurate picture of your financial status will give you some time guidelines around your search, allow you to consider your options and hopefully reduce some of that anxiety.
4. Don’t send out resumes to all your contacts. Yes, networking is a highly recommended component of a successful job search. It does, however, require some planning and forethought. Preparing a modified, updated resume tailored to both your targeted audience and the type of role you’d like to pursue is the first step. Unless you have been preparing to market yourself in advance, take the time to create the personal marketing material that best reflects your new goals. I worked with one client who sent out six resumes on the day after her job loss. Her resume wasn’t polished and she regretted her rash decision. She ultimately landed a great role, but in the meantime, she had to clean up some mixed messaging.
See Also : How to Know if a Job is Right for You.
Originally published on Forbes.