I wrote an article a couple of weeks ago I just got made redundant. What am I thinking announcing my redundancy. I thought I’d follow it up with a couple of articles that reflect what it’s like to take this forced break between opportunities, while I take my place in line.
Everybody needs a routine. Heck, even kids need a routine, you hear it all the time.
“That 4 year old kid turning somersaults and swinging a baseball bat in a menacing manner in the toy section of the department store, he’s fine, he just needs a routine.”
The first thing that’s turned upside down when you’re made redundant is your routine. You wake up and realise, I don’t have to get out of bed today. Well I do, but not for another hour and only to walk to my home PC. And I guess I will be home early as well, come to think of it. And I can throw on my casual clothes today. But if I wear them during office hours what do I wear during casual hours, my extra casual casual clothes, my lounge lizard attire. Oh-oh, that’s the start of a downward spiral, it’s a movie plot already.
Today I found the Cranberry Juice in the cupboard with the drinking glasses. How’d that happen? Why’d that happen? Mmm, actually it tastes pretty good at room temperature. Maybe I can persuade my self it was a stroke of brilliance. Yes, yes it was deliberate.
Sitting at the computer and looking out the window at my garden, I can see all the outside jobs that were sensibly scheduled into weekends to come over the next few months. They’re all vying for my attention now, pitting them selves against my job search. No one knows what I do all day now (maybe they never did). A relentless and often fruitless search through hundreds of web pages on the Internet leaves you with nothing to show for yourself, no proof of life. A mown lawn, a weeded garden, a new lawn edge wont get me a job, but it’s a temporary panacea and is hard physical evidence you haven’t dropped the ball and slipped into lounge lizard attire and attitude.
A few days in and I’m feeling pretty good. I’ve hit the gym two days running. Yes I am developing a schedule, a new schedule. But although I worked so hard I had a near death experience on the cardio machines, I haven’t dropped a kilo. How could that be? I really expected to have offloaded the excess baggage brought back from my recent overseas holiday. Note to self – don’t buy clingy T-shirts to wear to the gym, or at the least, don’t lift weights facing the mirror.
Ah, the things you see when you don’t have a job.
Disclaimer: No animals, or children were hurt in this next story.
So I found a suitable time at the gym, wedged between the early starters heading off for work, and the domestic workforce who have just dropped kids off at school. I’ve scanned the room from my mount, a complex take no prisoners exercise bike with a video screen showing a riding trail to focus on and keep you from slipping into an animated swamp or more dangerously, an unconscious state of exhaustion.
It was all very quiet in the cardio section as I rode my bike through the mountain track on screen. A lady, looking substantially more fit than me (no great achievement I must say), was gliding through the air on an air walker and another was riding an exercise bike at the front of the room. And then, to my eventual delight, a young gentleman walked nervously in, obviously new, looked completely overwhelmed by the array of life threatening machines, but finally decided on a treadmill. I quickly lost what interest I had the energy to muster and returned to staring at my screen through blood sweat and tears. Moments later there was a loud crash and I turned to see him on the floor wrapped around an air walker behind his treadmill. That was one for the treadmill. A notch in its rubber belt. Without missing an air step, the walking lady enquired unto his wellbeing. He mumbled he was okay, looked very sheepish, pulled the air walker back in line, and quickly stepped back onto his treadmill. You’ve gotta get right back on that horse. I maintained a look of concern, outwardly, right through the event. Marvelous – now there was a benefit of redundancy I wasn’t expecting. You don’t see things like that when you bogged down with a job. Live YouTube and no one hurt. Mortified, but not hurt.
I shuffle forward in the line, eyes to the future – an exciting future.
The first thing I needed to do was establish a new and meaningful routine. Job search is paramount of course. What to do and when needs to be weaved quickly into a routine. It’s a great opportunity to get fit and that’s of course really important for keeping the brain functioning well and reducing any anxiety you might feel. Staying in contact with friends and reconnecting with or establishing new networks is critical. Re-establishing a routine quickly is an important way to keep you running and in the right direction.