Denver Bar Association
October 2011
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Wellness Brief: Handling Job Loss or Work Reduction Stress

by MINES and Associates

Wellness Brief: Handling Job Loss or Work Reduction Stress


n light of the current job market and economic atmosphere, it’s normal to feel anxious when you hear about or experience downsizing, a job loss, a layoff, or a reduction in your workload. If your career has been affected by the uncertain economic times or you’re worried that it will be, follow the steps below to help minimize your anxiety:

• Talk to your spouse or partner about your worries. Relationships are too often hurt by stress, so make sure to talk to your loved one about what you’re feeling.

• If you lose your job, talk to your family about what’s happened and stay positive. If necessary, explain to your children that losing a job is a normal part of life, but what’s most important is that you love each other and that everyone is safe and secure.

• Don’t dwell on the stress. Try something soothing if thoughts of anxiety or fear come up, such as yoga, breathing techniques, meditation, or exercise. If you let stress run rampant, it can hurt you both emotionally and physically.

• Take a look at your finances. Review your budget and see if all your expenditures are necessary. See where you can cut costs, and if you do experience job loss or fear that you might, see how long your family could operate on savings.

• If you do lose your job, don’t panic. Explore options like insurance plans that provide coverage to your family while you look for a new position. Also, your previous employer may have important information on severance packages or other employers that are looking for employees. Unemployment benefits are something else to look into, as having that income can greatly reduce stress as you look for your new position. The best thing you can do is stay calm, gather the information you need as you leave your old position and look for a new one, and keep a positive attitude.

• Try to see the silver lining. If you are looking for a new position or thinking that you may have to at some point soon, are there any other jobs or careers that you would like to explore further? What skill sets or talents are you not using in your current or past positions that you would like to use now? Maybe writing in a journal can help you discover what you would like your next job opportunity to look like.

If you or someone you care about needs help dealing with job loss, you may wish to contact the Colorado Attorney Assistance Program. Counselors are available through the CAAP to provide confidential assistance at no cost to you. Call 303-832-1068 or 800-873-7138 for assistance. D


Published as part of MINES & Associates Personal Advantage services and available at Originally written and published by Life Advantages, LLC ©2011.


Wellness Brief is a monthly column that will look at all aspects of health and living well, and offer tips on how to bring well-being into your daily life. Is there a topic you would like to read about? Please email suggestions to Docket Editor Sara Crocker at

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