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Why does a layoff hurt more than it should?

In my short time on this planet, I clearly remember 4 mass lay events: 2000 dot com, the great recession, covid-19 and tech layoffs of 2022-2023. The frequent occurrence of these events does not make them any less devastating to the people impacted. It's not merely the loss of a paycheck, which in itself is damaging enough. It is the pain of being ostracized by a community you belonged to. Humans are social creatures and need the safety of a group so they are not picked off by predators or die of starvation. Sense of belonging is a natural need for all of us. As we're rapidly disconnecting from others in our fast paced world, not many of us are participating in social activities like our parents and grandparents used to. Our workplace becomes our most important social group and being severed from that social group is devastating. Loneliness and shock from being ostracized so suddenly leads to depression, paranoia and anxiety to name a few. This in turn has immense impact on our physical health. The only time I've seen my own father cry was due to a lay off. I remember how shocked I was to see the most important man in my life being so affected. Nobody is immune and I wasn't either. Cast aside like a social reject. It hurt. Our current economic system favors layoffs and games with people's livelihoods, but as the world continues changing so should the responsibility of companies in the monopoly games they play with people they hire. People are living creative beings, not machines who are "more productive at the office". Remember that you are not alone and your feelings are valid. They are felt by everyone else who has been in the same situation as you. If you are craving a sense of connection, reach out and we can chat so we can feel less alone.




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