Being laid off may produce big feelings in your body. It may be unexpected, and it’s un-fun news to receive. The emotions that arise could include overwhelm, anger, shock, sadness, doubt, and shame, to name a few. It’s perfectly normal to feel all these feelings. You have a right to feel them. In this article, we’re going to offer a way you can use these emotions in your favor, to tap into your potential. These big feelings are available to become huge creative assets, taking you powerfully in the direction you want to go. The journey will work your world experience from the inside out.
Be curious and open minded about these concepts, and try out the offered exercises. You may feel release and relief. With practice, these exercises can support & guide your opportunistic creative genius, a pivotal point for new beginnings.
By calming and resolving your upset, you’ll get your full creativity back.
The throes of an upset can often feel like a wild ride. That’s because it can be. When your upset is the driver’s seat, there are parts of your conscious thinking that go offline. In upset states such as stress, anxiety, or anger, your body and nervous systems get hi-jacked into thinking you are under attack. As your mind yells “danger!”, you may notice your breathing get shallow or quick, your heart rate rise, and your thinking mind go haywire. In these moments, the creative and empathetic parts of your brain go offline. The only system running is “Survive! Survive! Survive!” and life feels hard to experience. You might notice your thoughts loop, and no solution you come up with seems to help.
When your internal alert system falls back into a relaxed place, your biological rhythms will shift to meet it. This means the parts of your brain that hold your creative and empathetic capacities come back online. The piece of you that was looping in upset is now back in harmony with your system, giving you more space than you had before. Instead of your thoughts looping, you’re in a position to see opportunities everywhere. Life feels like it’s on your side again.
Start by discovering and acknowledging your feelings.
Meeting your feelings where they are is the way to emotional freedom. Being aware is key. Begin by acknowledging them, listening to them and feeling them fully. Ask your anger, what does it want you know? Within these emotions are pieces of yourself. By not dealing with them or letting them express, you are compartmentalizing away your energy. Once these feelings are listened to, and soothed, they join back into your body and give you more creative capacity. In this way, all of your feelings are good feelings because they are part of you.
Exercise 1: Try capturing and writing down all the feelings you’re experiencing. Maybe you’re mad, nervous, or sad. And maybe there’s thoughts that go with them, “I didn’t deserve this,” “Now what am I going to do?” “I can’t believe it.”
Practice strengthening your inner harmony.
Find a feeling of loving compassion or great peace and relaxation in your body. Something you feel when you are watching a beautiful sunset, snuggling your dog, holding your child, or maybe thinking of God’s role in your life, if that is in alignment with your beliefs. We call this “existential comfort.” The feelings you feel in your body, the harmony from within, is a healing balm to the emotional upset you’re feeling.
Exercise 2: Get in a comfortable seated position and take a nice deep breath. Close your eyes. Call into your body this feeling of existential comfort. Practice making it strong inside yourself; magnifying it. You may notice your muscles relax, and your breath slowing down. Hold the feeling for as long as you can. Enjoy it. When you feel complete, you can open your eyes. Notice how you feel. Notice how your body feels.
Next, cycle through each big upset feeling, while meeting it with your inner harmony.
Meeting the upset feelings with the feeling of inner harmony will begin to calm and resolve the upset in your system. What you’re really practicing here is holding one feeling in the body, while meeting it with the other. Where these two feelings meet, the alchemy of release and relief happens.
Exercise 3: Get in a comfortable seated position and take a big deep breath. Say to yourself, “Even though this is so terrible, and I don’t know what to do,” (presencing the feeling of upset you have, perhaps this is sadness), “I deeply love and accept myself,” (and here, call into your body the feeling of inner harmony; call on your existential comfort). “Even though I’m so mad! How could they do this to me?!” (perhaps next you feel anger), “I have God and I know there is a greater plan for me,” (feeling big comfort in your body), “Even though I have no idea how I’m going to find another job, or how I’ll pay my bills right now,” (maybe you’re feeling scared), “I know there is great love in the world for everyone including me.” Stay with each phrase and feeling, moving back and forth between presencing it and presencing inner harmony, until that particular feeling seems to have shifted. Then move onto the next, like peeling away layers of an onion.
Incorporate your body into the practice to gain deeper resolution.
Big emotions are big energy. As you work your inner feelings muscles above, and the alchemy of release and relief begin to occur, you can aid it in moving quickly by incorporating your body. For example, you can tap lightly with your fingertips across your upper chest between your shoulders, or you can wiggle and take really good deep breaths between each thought and feeling you call up. This tapping and movement helps the big feelings “dislodge” from inside you and transmute. You may find yourself yawning, burping, suddenly feeling hungry or tired. All of these things are natural and mean you’re headed in the right direction.
Exercise 4: In a comfortable seated position, take a deep breath. From shoulder to shoulder, just below your collarbone, place the tips of your fingers on your body. Now tap on yourself in that location, lightly. Practice maintaining this tapping motion while completing exercise 3. Think of it like when you pick up a child and pat them on the back after they trip and fall. In this scenario, you are the parent and the child, taking time to soothe your own body.
From a neutral feeling place, you can now resource yourself.
Neutrality in thoughts, feelings, and body is the launching pad of new beginnings. From here, anything is possible. The best next place to go, is to resource yourself and invest in that new-found peace. Breathe in the space you just created inside yourself. The world might be occurring differently for you now. You may have thoughts like, “You know, it was time for me to move on anyway,” or “Maybe this is finally my moment to rest and reset.”
Exercise 5: Put on some music that feels good, draw a bath, or take a walk outside for fresh air.
Anchor into the fullness of your creative capacity.
When you are ready to re-meet the world, start by empowering your body to feel how you want to feel. The same way your body listens to your mind’s thoughts about danger, it also listens to your mind’s thoughts about possibilities. You can intentionally call in thoughts in your mind that embolden your body’s creative capacity.
Exercise 6: Get into a comfortable seated position. Take a nice deep inhale, and close your eyes. In your mind’s eye, think of a time in your life when you had everything you needed. Perhaps it’s those moments when you just get home from the grocery store and stock everything away, feeling abundant. Or maybe it’s the feeling of a simple Sunday morning when you get the chance to enjoy your coffee in the quiet sunrise and take your time. Once you have the thought, or moment, make the imagery of it bright and alive inside yourself. Allow yourself to fill up with this feeling of having everything you need.
Notice what you have now, and how all your resources are here to work in your favor.
All of these exercises are designed to pivot your relationship to your circumstances from the inside out. When, inside yourself, you feel empty and angry, the world around you is likely to occur as providing more evidence for why things are hard. When, inside yourself, you feel relaxed and resourced, the world around you will present you with assets you have at your fingertips and opportunities for more. With the above exercises completed, you will be meeting the world from a place of calm, creative power.
Exercise 7: Take inventory of how much you already have to work with. Make a list that includes things like co-workers who would readily write a character and skill reference for you. Whom else would be honored to support you with your next move; perhaps engaging and soliciting support from friends, past managers, professional acquaintances. Ask yourself, who might be honored to support me in making my next move with warm introductions, maybe notice how your resume is already in pretty good shape, and how many job postings align with your interests, skills, knowledge and abilities.
Practice enjoying the creation of your newly sanctioned next journey in life.
By focusing on your inner experience, you are in the driver’s seat of your life’s journey, no matter where you’re headed. Immerse yourself in continual inner emotional regulation, and then anchor into the creative capacity of the feelings you want to feel. When you act from a place of calm, resourced, power, you’ll continue to see how the working world is ready to work in your favor.