So you’ve just been let go – unemployed in times of global pandemic

It hurts less when we are all fired at the same time, right?

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Hands up if you’ve been laid off, let go, stood down, furloughed, or just plain old fired since the coronavirus pandemic started. It seems like overnight, all of my friends either got the boot or are about to get the boot from their work.

You know what? You are not alone. I’m right there with you! We’re all in this together. We’re all in the gutter! Embrace it!

Yesterday, one of my last reliable jobs was canceled, and guess what? I’m freaking out yet oddly zen at the same time. Let me explain.

lost job coronavirus

With a mountain of debt, no solid work for the foreseeable future, the travel industry up in flames, my passive income all but evaporated overnight with bills still coming in hot hot hot, to say I’m shitting my pants is a bit of an understatement.

I never saw this coming, even a month ago, and also, if I did, I’m not sure how proactively I would have saved. I’m a bit of a hot mess when it comes to preparation and tidy finances.

Globally, we are collectively fucked. Wahoo!

The economic fallout from COVID-19 will be nothing short of catastrophic, at least in my particular area of work. Do you want to travel? Well, be sure to add in an extra 14 days of quarantine before and after your holiday to ensure freedom from a life-threating virus.

Hard pass.

lost job coronavirus

The scale and scope of COVID-19 are unprecedented, yet the future is far from clear. Companies and businesses are facing the ramifications of shut borders, forced quarantines, and a very unlucky choice of name – I’m looking at you Corona beer.

The new normal hasn’t even been imagined yet – no one is even talking about what the world will look like six months from now.

It breaks my heart to see friends of mine who have poured their lives into their jobs only to be let go without a second thought. Hell, it’s even happening to me. But in that darkness and fear, I’ve found comfort in knowing I’m not alone in this.

lost job coronavirus

It doesn’t help to be American, where our future is so uncertain and with a nutjob president whose blatant disregard for the health of his citizens or the advice of experts is nothing short of unbelievable. Will the government even deliver on a stimulus package that has any real meaning to people like me? I bloody doubt it.

It sucks to be in a place where your government doesn’t have your back. That’s messed up.

With millions of Americans already filing for unemployment, I count myself exceptionally lucky living in New Zealand as a resident. Extremely lucky. I hope this is a massive wake-up call to my fellow brethren – the rest of the civilized world doesn’t live like this or treat people that way.

lost job coronavirus

Throughout the rest of the world, governments are protecting employment.

Workers keep their jobs, even in industries that are shut down. Even self-employed people like me are counted for. For example, the government here covers most of the wages through direct payments. It’s like our wages are socialized for the duration of the crisis.

We also have fair and public healthcare too. Sure, I pay high taxes, but guess what? I see the benefit from it, so I don’t mind. I love living in a place where I feel cared for and protected, especially in a time of crisis. The US has a lot to learn from a place like New Zealand.

lost job coronavirus

It’s also never been more apparent to me to learn just to let go of things I can’t control. This wild situation is global and so far beyond anything I could ever change. In some ways, I find solace in that too. (I’m only able to do this through all of the incredible coaching work I’ve done with Kait Rich).

While it’s still very raw and real for me (and I imagine for many of you too), take heart that so many of us, me included, are also wondering how we will pay rent or buy groceries next month.

Now is the time to look to each other for support and guidance.

Instead of crawling up each other and kicking others down to reach success (or the last 18 pack of toilet roll), why don’t we use this forced time to work on what matters, like family, food, love, health, and joy.

If we forget how to be human now, we have no chance of recovery.

lost job coronavirus

I’ve got my good days and bad days, which are all meshing together now that time seems irrelevant. That being said, I’m incredibly determined to look on the bright side. It’s time to get creative again, especially now that I’m a free woman!

There always a lesson in suffering, I suppose. Time to let go of what we can’t control and not let it devour us.

Hopefully, we will come out on the other side and create a system that looks after each other instead of who can profit off of who the most. Be kind and kia kaha, as we say in New Zealand (stay strong).

Have you just lost your job, too, or are you afraid of losing your job? How are you coping? Where are you in the world? Share!

lost job coronavirus

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37 Comments on “So you’ve just been let go – unemployed in times of global pandemic

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  1. Thanks for this message! I actually quit my job a couple of weeks ago to start ny own online writing business. Worst timing ever! But I try to look on the bright side. I already counted on some months without income as I were to start my business. I try to not look to far ahead but focus on this week. What am I going to get done this week? It helps me to stay focused and not get paralyzed by insecurities about the future. I hope we can work and travel again soon!

  2. ‘Thankfully’ I’ve been able to continue working through this as a cleaner for a campsite who has taken on desperate people in need of shelter and a handful of semi-permanent residents. It isn’t the job I was originally hired to do, and the hours aren’t as good but I’m thankful to still have a small fraction of income to put food on the table as least. It will be interesting to see how this will impact our Ski season here in Wanaka… if we’re even allowed a season this year.

  3. I’m a freelance writer mostly covering travel and almost all my usual writing gigs have pretty much evaporated. Somehow, I can’t muster the energy yet to actually worry about this. Maybe because I’m currently stuck in New Zealand waiting for the repatriation flight home, and everything else just seems super far away. Or because being in lockdown in a hostel with bad wifi doesn’t exactly make you want to think about possible new job openings. But I’m sure it’ll catch up with me soon. Anyway, here’s to hoping things will soon turn better again and we all get through this together!

  4. Hi liz. I was just thinking about you and your work the other day. As one of the old guard of the travel industry (I’ve been selling retail travel for 35 years), I am of course trying to get a picture of how the new world will look for me post covid 19. I have some ideas, but was keen to get your opion (as you are one of the new generation of travel influences) . By the way, I still love the idea of doing your boot camp, but never dreamed I would have the time. Ever thought of doing an online version? Travel WILL come back strong. Its just really a matter of how we get through the next 12 months. Those that survive will be in hot demand.

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