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  • Writer's pictureJill Hartmann

Some perspective - a year after my layoff

Updated: Jan 16


I woke up feeling exhausted and depressed about my job search. Since being laid off after nearly 25 years with my last company, for the past three months, I've been seriously networking and applying for jobs. I've applied for 100 roles with 10 interviews and 0 offers. This morning, I moved yet another job from "in progress" to "declined" on my spreadsheet. Most days I can stay positive, but I'm struggling today.


From the TV in the background I heard, Mel Robbins give some great advice. Mel is a New York Times best selling author with 12 million followers online and hosts one of the most popular podcasts. View her 12 minute segment on Hoda & Jenna's show here.


Mel provided six questions to ask yourself to prepare for the next year of your life. So instead of applying for another job, I decided to try her advice to get my perspective in check!


1 - What were your 2023 highlights?

Mel said to grab your phone and scroll through your cameral roll. Go month by month and take an audit of 2023. What were the milestones? The highs and lows? My highlights are listed below. I realized that for the most part, I had a blessed year full of travel and time spent with family and friends. I also became a certified leadership coach, which was a time consuming but notable accomplishment.


2 - What were the hardest things?

When looking at your highlights, see the moments you were struggling. For me, the hardest part of 2023 was processing my layoff. I didn't realize how much of my time and identity was tied to my job. I also didn't realize how long it would take me to move forward, but I finally did with the support of some great friends.


3 - What did you learn?

When looking at your audit, what did you learn? I believe that you learn the most from the struggles. For me, I learned that I'm so blessed with family and friends. I learned that my husband supports me by being a care giver and my social coordinator. Without him, I would not have had so many adventures. My husband gets to see the worst of me - they days I'm in tears after being declined for a job I know I'd crush. I learned this transition is tough on him, too and that he's my biggest supporter.


4 - What do you want to stop doing? One thing I noticed during this exercise is that many of my adventures included alcohol. While I don't want to stop drinking completely, I do want to find ways to have fun without it. I really think this will help me feel healthier.

5 - What do you want to continue doing? It's important to celebrate wins - no matter how small. I want to continue to travel and find a flexible job that will allow me to do that.


6 - What do you want to start doing? I've struggled with some menopause side effects this year and it's been a bit hard to get motivated to exercise. I know I need to start moving more.


Mel mentioned that "you can't get directions until you know where you are." As I think about the direction for my 2024, it helped to take a look at where I was first.


Audit of 2023

  • Celebrated the New Year in St. Thomas with family

  • Participated in 40 over 40 photoshoot

  • Got a colonoscopy

  • Took a 17 day RV trip and visited a dozen national parks and monuments

  • Experimented with creating TikTok content

  • Visited my son and mom in AZ

  • Sent two kids to visit their brother in AZ

  • Went to the Dominican Republic with great friends

  • Celebrated great niece's 10th birthday

  • Updated dining room with new paint, carpet and curtains

  • Took pickleball class at YMCA

  • Skied with family at Park City, Utah

  • Volunteered at Matthew 25 and Family Promise

  • Saw The Killers concert in Columbus

  • Surprised friend in Urbana for her birthday

  • Celebrated daughter’s college graduation and first "real" job

  • Saw comedian Dave Attell

  • Solo trip to pick up son from AZ

  • Fixed house after toilet leak

  • Attended Career Women of Achievement

  • Saw DMB at Riverbend

  • Cleaned out garage

  • Tried Botox

  • Visited friend’s cabin in Vermillion

  • Saw The Cure in concert in the rain

  • Hosted a college Joe’s player for the summer and went to games

  • Lots of fun CAMPER weekends!!

  • Took flower arranging class with friends

  • Boating at Lake Cumberland

  • Became a certified leadership coach – met amazing new people!

  • Steve Miller Band concert

  • Post Malone concert

  • A couple of Reds games – one with out of town visitors

  • 500 Miles to Memphis farewell concert

  • Helped my niece move

  • Flew to AZ to move son back to college

  • Lake Tahoe trip - my favorite place

  • Pedal Wagon adventure

  • Voted in favor of women's reproductive rights (twice) in Ohio

  • Miami college friend reunion in Cinci

  • Fireworks with a breath taking view

  • Cake concert

  • Moose won 2nd place at running of the wieners Oktoberfest Zinzinnati

  • Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats concert

  • Family weekend at ASU

  • Started LLC for coaching and marketing consulting

  • Launched website and blog

  • Cabin on Lake Erie

  • Visited my cousin's restaurant

  • Mourned the death of my aunt

  • First time at RenFest

  • Celebrated son's 21st birthday

  • HS friend and daughters came for visit

  • Started Semiglutide

  • UC football tailgates

  • Blooms & Berries fall festival

  • Researched history of our 100+ year old house

  • Cleaned out basement and attic

  • Substitute taught 2nd grade

  • Played flag football on Thanksgiving

  • First FC Cinci game

  • Back to Lake Erie for Christmas bar

  • Turned 50 in VEGAS!

  • Celebrated sister's birthday at Lori’s Roadhouse concert

  • Visited Cinci Art Museum

  • Went to Cyclone’s hockey game

  • Applied for 100 jobs, had 10 interviews and 0 job offers

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