Mateen ‘Korede Taomu: Son, I Know You Just Lost Your Job…
Losing your job doesn’t make you less of a man. There are things that are outside your control. How would you have predicted a global pandemic? How would you have known that your company would downsize? You had big plans, but this doesn’t mean the end of it.
You have read that email a thousand times for the last three weeks and you still cannot believe your eyes. I must burst your bubble so you can face reality – you have lost the job, and it is not coming back. You didn’t do anything wrong. That’s life. You feel betrayed; you gave your all to the company but they let you go with the excuse of “downsizing and adjusting to the current global crisis.” You believe you deserve better and it feels like the rug was pulled from under your feet. All your well-laid-out plans have come crashing down.
That stage is over and you need to move on quickly, or you would be growing older but stuck in time-space.
This is a difficult time for the whole world, and you need to know how to handle this crisis. For some men, their job is their identity, which is a mistake. Losing your job doesn’t make you less of a man. There are things that are outside your control. How would you have predicted a global pandemic? How would you have known that your company would downsize? You had big plans, but this doesn’t mean the end of it. How you respond to a crisis is what determines success. A smooth sea never makes a skillful sailor. You have the present and the future, face those squarely.
I know a big question you’ve been pondering on. How would I be able to fend for my three kids? You need to sit down and discuss with your wife on the next step to take. You are in this together. What affects you affects her and vice versa. You both can decide to tell your eldest child that there will be changes so he can help communicate with his siblings.
The stupid thing men do is act childish when they are no longer the main financiers and think everyone is against them (especially their wives). This is fear expressed to fill a pseudo vacuum.
You will be home now more than ever and it is easy to get on your wife’s nerves. You will see things in the house that have always been a certain way and you paid little attention to. My advice is for you to leave them. From one man to another, don’t comment on everything.
You might not see it, but this is a fantastic opportunity to reinvent yourself. You have always seen yourself as an engineer, now you have the time and freedom to be much more than what your certificate says. Your mum encouraged me to start the business after losing my job in the ’80s. I reached out to my contacts and shared my proposal. They knew me as a man of ethics and competence. The invested and never regretted it. Part of the earnings was what we used to pay your university fees. If you don’t fancy entrepreneurship – and there is nothing wrong with that – you have to find a new job.
Never forget that you are designed to solve complex problems and that should be your quest while looking for a new job. Be realistic with the new salary you want. Sometimes, you might need to start at a lower level, to propel you to the place you want to be. No job is beneath you.
While searching for a job, it is an opportunity to see the wonders you have ignored because you have been busy. Like your child taking their first walk, your son losing his teeth, telling your kids bedtime stories and seeing them grow up and go off to university. We are so busy we don’t have time to pay attention to all the daily miracles going on around us. Instead, we worry about work and our ambitions.
My child, it won’t be a walk in the park, but it is a real refining process. You would see life from new lenses. Your mum and I will always be here to support you. Don’t give up. You are a winner because you were born one.