I know a woman who lost her job.
She knew it was coming.
After all, she was privy to the numbers.
Moreover, she’d watched as colleagues went into the boss’ office one-by-one, only to emerge and pack up their things.
Now it was her turn.
In the days leading up to her meeting – in a cruel twist, yes, there were days – we’d been chatting about how she could mentally prepare.
And while I’m not a huge fan of mantras, these are situations where they actually do come in handy.
So her mantra became: I am not my job.
Maybe you need this one too. It’s true, you know You are not your job.
Maybe – like my friend – you’ve become so overly identified with your work that even the slightest threat of it being taken away instills not just fear, but outright panic.
This is dangerous.
As I’ve said before, when your self-worth is wrapped in things that are outside of your control, you’re setting yourself up for an emotional roller coaster.
In other words, you’re up when the job is up, and down when the job is down.
This is also true when your worth is wrapped in a relationship by the way, but since this is a career blog I won’t digress… too much.
Suffice it to say that we must come to our work and our homes as full beings already – otherwise we will expect too much from them.
We all know change is hard especially when there are mortgages to pay, mouths to feed, and retirements to save for.
But change is also inevitable so – knowing this – why do we resist it so much? Shouldn’t we just move through it knowing that whatever happens is designed to prepare us for the next step of our lives and to teach us something we didn’t know before?
As humans, we are clearly hardwired to be creatures of habit and comfort. Translation: If we didn’t get shaken up once in a while, most of us would be perfectly happy to live in quiet complacency.
But this is obviously less than we’ve been called to do… so the rug has to get pulled from underneath us sometimes which is essentially life’s way of saying M-O-V-E.
The trick, of course, is to understand that it’s happening FOR us instead of TO us…and let go.
Naturally, trapeze artists know there’s a period where you have to completely detach from one bar to grab the next.
Life is like that too, isn’t it?
I mean, the tighter our grip on the “old” bars, the less available we are for the “new” ones.
So back to my friend.
I’m happy to report that she found a new bar.
Wait – that sounds bad.
She found a new opportunity – one that’s a better environment for her skills and interests.
Seriously. This is a message she sent to her Awake Exec sisters just a few hours ago:
I feel like I’ve been here much longer than three weeks, in a really good way. Sometimes things happen so that we can find other ways to grow and help others. I am so happy and thankful for all of these things and for all of you. Thank you for believing in and supporting me!
How amazing is that?
Further proof that sometimes all you have to do is get comfortable in the air and – lo and behold – you will land on your feet. Especially when you remember that you are not your job.
Originally on: Emily Bennington