Sometimes life throws you a curve ball.
For me that was getting the news in September this year of being “at risk of redundancy.”
Being at risk of redundancy means that you enter what is called a “consultation period”. It is a stressful time where emotions are high and your future is unknown. You get a chance to discuss the plans with your managers, suggest new ways of doing things and try to figure out what happens to you next.
My initial reactions included anger, sadness, hopelessness, betrayal and upset. I tried to embrace these emotions and just let them come out for the first few days – we are emotional beings and I can’t stop those feelings happening. But after a few days of feeling sorry for myself and wanting to punch someone in the face (in the nicest possible way!), I pulled myself together and went to God with it all.
I needed His guidance on what to do next, how to respond in love and how to be a great witness during all this. And here is what I came away with:
- Be there for those who are going through it. Yes this is a tough time for me personally, but there were other colleagues also going through this. This provided a unique opportunity to show them love and support where I might not have been able to before. I am speaking encouragement into their lives and sharing part of how I am dealing with it. I am living out my faith in front of them (even though we are all remote workers so hardly ever meet up in person).
- Be at peace with what God wants you to do next. After praying it through I felt an immense peace about accepting the decision of the leadership team where I work, and moving on. By sharing the peace I feel about this with those at work, even though that meant I am accepting redundancy without knowing what was coming next, I showed the faith that I have in God to come through for me. I went into my one to one consultation meeting with this peace in my heart and it showed in the way that I was able to talk so positively about my decision.
- Treat those in leadership with love throughout the process. Consultation is a high stress time for all those involved. Those in leadership have had to make some very tough and heartbreaking decisions for the good of the company. And despite my desire to death stare them all when I found out, I know that is not the right way to do things. In my one to one consultation I was able to empathise with those conducting the meeting and that meant that when I shared what had upset me, they actually took it more seriously.
- Seize the opportunity to share your faith. In times like this people start to see how others react, they look for solutions to their problems, and this opens up doors to share what your way is. I was actually able to share about my experience in church during my one to one consultation meeting with people that I have worked with for 8 years and never said a bean!!! The unique conversations and emotion lead discussions give space for these conversations to happen, so seize the opportunity if it comes.
I am now at the end of this process. Friday will be my last day before I am made redundant. But I am so excited that having trusted God in this process, I have a new and exciting job to look forward to starting in January. If it wasn’t for the consultation period looming in my mind I may never have applied for this new role, so I am thanking God for it. Yes its been stressful, there have been visual migraines and tears and nights where I just wanted to curl up in a ball and it all disappear. There have been tense phone calls and butterflies in my stomach before meetings. But over it all God has been sovereign and I have trusted He knows best.
I am hoping that me sharing this story now gives some hope to anyone going through something similar. Keep going in the uncertainty and cling to God. That is all we can do.