You Can Be Laid Off and Get Unemployment

That’s my worst-case scenario in my head whenever 30 something old me threatens to leap before I look in my career. It’s my worst-case scenario because I’ve been there. Fresh out of college, one year into my first job, after they gave us a raise and gassed us up, they told us they made a mistake and some of us had to be let go. I didn’t know about unemployment but I got to know myself in that time looking for a job and then signing up for AmeriCorps.

If I had to describe my 30s it would be brave. I’m used to being other people’s safety net. In my 30s I know I don’t have a safety net and I don’t care because I’ll figure it out. I’m a professional optimist. I always land on my feet.

The generation before us worked at jobs for decades and they loved it. They accepted a living wage. Millennials and after job hop and it seems like a living wage is a slap in the face. Strapped with tens of thousands of dollars of student debt, we want a thriving wage. We don’t want to live paycheck to paycheck and be one flat tire from homelessness so when you’re just making a living wage why not risk it? My theory is if you don’t try it you won’t know and my mantra is to chase things that seem like growth opportunities but scare me.

Job hopping leads to more money. People have studied it and it makes sense. Generations before us stayed at their jobs way too long. But if they were a person of color it totally makes sense because said people didn’t have much of a choice when it came to socioeconomic mobility. The pressure to stay doesn’t make sense nowadays after living through several once-in-a-lifetime crises.

“This company can fire me at any time.” That is the truth. I’ve seen it happen and my mouth was ajar every time. I’ve seen other employees absorb another title for the same pay for the sake of the family culture but if we compare our employers to relationships it would make the picture clearer. Would you accept the behavior from your employer from your significant other? If the answer is no, it’s time to “it’s not me, it’s you” them.

Millennials are leading the great resignation.

There’s no better time than a pandemic to leap before you look if you can do so. I say if you can do it because everyone has their own circumstances. The world may be ending around you but if you’re looking for another industry to try out, do it! If you’re bored in your current position and want to ask for a raise, do it! If you don’t get the response you want, leap! Leap and figure the rest of it out later. You owe people zero explanations and that’s the best part about it. As someone who has asked for a raise several times in life, the worst that could happen is that they say no.

“Own your evolution, because if you want change, the only way to get it is to ask for it. ” – @justdae 

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