Did you ever lose your job and have it turn out to be a good thing?

I’m a little freaked out right now - my husband lost his job yesterday. I have a great job, I love where I work, so we’re totally okay for me, and we COULD live on my salary for awhile if we absolutely had to, though things would be tight. He did get a good severance package, but he’s not looked for a job since graduating college - this is the only job he’s had since college. I’m also pregnant, which is probably making me a little more nervous over everything. I think in my HEART I know things will be okay, but the worrier in me is trying not to flip out.

I’ve had it happen to me before and it’s worked out because I’ve gotten my current job, which I love. But I think it would help to hear from some others who’ve had things work out for the better after losing your job.


After I got laid off from my second tech job in a row (one business went under and one moved cities) I reexamined what I wanted out of a career. I’m now in the much less lucrative but much more personally fulfilling career path of nursing.

So in retrospect it worked out quite well for me! I only wish I’d been laid off sooner, what a waste of a year that tech support stint was.

I got fired from a lawyer’s office once, which ended up being the best thing that happened to me. My next job was my first step into the IT world, which is where I’d always wanted to be anyway, and if I hadn’t gotten fired, I never would have gotten what turned out to be the perfect starting point for my career. I can’t even count how many times I’ve thanked my “lucky stars” for getting fired, and within 2 years, I was making more than 4 times what I was making at the lawyer’s office.

In the long run for us, that has always been the case. So cheer up :). I know how much it sucks to have your husband lose his job - I have been there, and I have lost jobs myself that I was devestated about. It feels 100 times worse when you are pregnant. (My husband got laid off a week before we closed on our house :eek: ) Sometimes you have to take a crappy ‘for now’ job to tide yourself over but eventually you will settle in to something better.

Every time I’ve lost my job (not a common occurrence, but it happens) I’ve come back into the workforce at 20% to 50% more salary, and better benefits.

I’ve been laid off twice, and Mr. Athena probably double that. Every time, we’ve gotten better jobs - higher salaries, better benefits, etc. Unless you’re in a truly sucky economy, losing a job can often be a good thing.

I had a job that was, by all objective accounts, very desirable - VERY good salary, working for one of the most respected firms in the field, would meet many, if not most of the criteria that folks would consider amazing.

But it was someone else’s version of the American Dream, not mine. When the chance came to have a mutual parting of the ways, I jumped and haven’t looked back. I love my new job, have a much better work/life balance, a completely different prespective that doesn’t involve dreading waking up in the morning and a much greater sense of being true to myself because I took a Road Less Travelled (in relative terms) and stuck to my guns (my first job attempt after the change failed).

It has changed my life 100% for the better. Best of luck.

I’ve just lost my job (yesterday.) I do believe it will result in a better-paying one. We’ll see.

Yeah. My first “real” engineering job out of college. My boss and I really didn’t mesh at all and I was sort of asked to quit. (which is really embarassing :o to admit that I couldn’t make it work, I really should have foreseen the problems and acted a little more proactively) Didn’t know what I was gonna do, I was even considering getting out of engineering all together. But then I found my current job and I’m still in my field with a great boss and a good company and I even got a bump in pay.

I got fired from a financial analysis firm, which had nothing to do with my college major (environmental science) but that I was really good at. However, the atmosphere there was horrible. The office was rife with Jesus freaks (and I mean FREAKS, not just your run-of-the-mill believers) and the egos of the lawyers we dealt with were beyond belief. I was fired after a couple years basically for my “attitude problem.”
BEST THING that could possibly have happened to me. Although I was out of work for about four or five months, I found a job at an environmental laboratory and after about a year and a half I am now head of my department and I loooove my job.

Thank god I was fired from that horrible place. Good luck on your new adventures.

Yes, yes I did.

In my temping years, I once had this stupid, boring, brainless job at a pension company. (At the time I had a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies.) It was one of those jobs that was required because some legislation was changed, and all the pension companies had to do an enormous amount of paperwork (looking through old files, making small changes, etc) to meet it.

One Tuesday afternoon, my (awesome) boss had been promoted, and this woman had been named to take his place. I had encountered this woman before and for some reason she hated me (even though I did my drone work as well, if not better, than any of my colleagues). I knew that my job was about to get harder.

Then I was called into the office by my awesome old boss, who told me he was very sorry but they’d have to let me go.

I walked into a temp office (not the one which had been employing me) and threw a hissy fit, basically “what the hell does it take to get a decent job in this city, I can type and I have a degree and I have tons of office experience, and the only jobs I can get are brain-dead drone jobs and I even get sacked from those, what the hell kind of employees do decent employers want?” I was even crying because I was so pissed off.

Note that this is not a strategy I have ever pursued, before or since, but maybe I should have.

She asked me how fast I could type, I sniffled “70 wpm,” and then she offered me a job paying several quid an hour more than I had been making, as an admin assistant at the Environment Agency.

My former co-workers were beside themselves with envy. Apparently things only got worse under the new boss, just as I had predicted, and my job turned out to be particularly sweet.

It happened to my husband too: he had a job that paid the bills but that he didn’t particularly like. He sort of half-quit and half-was laid off. The following week, in his suddenly plentiful spare time, he started volunteering at a local non-profit whose work he was really into.

Within a week they offered him a position.

So yes, losing jobs often opens doors that you don’t even think about when you are steadily employed.

This has happened to me a number of times. It ALWAYS works out for the better, even if the first or second job you get isn’t “the” job for you.

One door closes and another one opens. I found that I’d get comfortable (or just plain lazy) in a job and not even realize that there were so many opportunities out there. Once you begin looking, interviewing, and reassessing your abilities, needs, and desires, you begin to see options out there that you never knew existed.

I began working when the goal for many people was a “cradle to grave” job. The world has changed a lot since then, and for me, it’s allowed me to explore all the different sides of me. Best of luck to him in his job search.

I got canned from the place that makes those automatic sliding doors you walk through at shopping centers.

I had been looking for work as a machinist for some months and found that place – after figuring out that I would show up on time and knew how to use basic tools, they hired me to make door frames.
It was awful. The shop was nasty and dirty. The people all looked pretty rough. The guy who was showing me the ropes was missing teeth and looked slightly drunk all of the time. Most of the folks worked on piecework, so they worked through their breaks and lunches. The threat of firing was always there: three lates in a year and you’re fired, for example.
After two weeks my boss came by and said “You’re a good guy and all and you have been working well with the other guy, but I don’t think it’s going to work out.” He kindly told me I could go early (at 3pm) and he would clock me out at 4.

I went home, totally devastated by the rejection: I got fired from the suckiest job I ever had!

At 3:30, the phone rang. It was a temp agency I had worked with asking me if I was available for a job the coming Wednesday, for better pay than the sucky job. My depression immediately lifted.

That Wednesday morning I showed up at the large pharmaceutical company where I still work today, 15 years later. Not only was the temp job far better than the automatic door place, but I was hired on after six months, they paid for the entirety of my college education over the years, and four years after hire I moved into the IT area and never looked back.

Getting fired from the automatic door place was essential for me to have ended up where I am today – I wouldn’t have been home to answer the phone, and I wouldn’t have risked losing a job I already had for an unknown quantity (bird in the hand and all).

Oddly enough, he’s handling it quite well. I’m the one who’s freaked out.

Thanks for all of the stories. They’re helping.

Like others have mentioned above, I wound up better off after being laid off, though after a nerve-wracking period of unemployment. The fact is that when you’re laid off, there’s usually something wrong with the place that’s laying you off – something that typically degrades the work environment. It’s also true that most of us are passive to the point of preferring the devil we know, and the layoff helps by pushing us to get past that. The change we’re forced to make is often one for the better.

{{{{{Elza B and ElzaHub}}}}}

I left my last job because the funding for it ran out. I then got my current job, at which I am paid more than twice as much.


I had a boss who was a micromanaging bitch, who would tell me to do something, I would do it, then she would become irate because that wasn’t what she told me to do. I was asked to return to another department, basically because no one else could do it as well as I could, and I did. I was bored. My work was done by noon and I had Nothing. Else. To. Do.

She had my replacement hired and working one week later, which tells me if I hadn’t moved I would have been fired.

I’d been in the company for a total of five years. I found out that I wasn’t going to get the higher than normal raise I asked for, and it was like a spigot got shut off. I was done. I started looking for another job, and landed one still in my career field, closer to family, doing less work for more money.

I’m still at the same company. I love my job, and I’m so glad I jumped when I did.

Oh, I should mention going back to the other department put that experience right back on top of my resume, and in my new job I ended up working in the same department on the exact same software!

Oh, yeah, it happened to me, and it was really the best thing that ever happened, though it didn’t seem so at the time.

Hubby and I were going through a really rough financial situation. I was bitterly unhappy with my job, but we needed the money. New people bought the business, and instead of just firing everyone, they took the passive-agressive route of just making everyone’s lives a living hell until they quit. I was the last one left. They did something so mean to me that I just put down my stuff and walked out. I cried all the way home, feeling I had failed my family.

Hubby was sweetly sympathetic. He told me we’d get by-- why didn’t I go do something I enjoyed, even if it didn’t pay well? He suggested I go volunteer at our local museum a few hours a week while I was looking for another job.

The museum sucked me in-- soon I was working there four days a week because I loved it so much. In a few months, they offered me a paid position. It was little more than minimum wage, but at least it was* something.*

Best decision I ever made. Yeah, it didn’t really end up helping us financially, but the money situation worked itself out in the end, and now I have a job I dearly love-- I actually look forward to going to work.

Damn, Lissa! What did they do? Yikes! I’ve quit jobs, one with no notice (family emergency, I called up and quit over the phone) but I’ve never gotten up and walked out.

I’m of the firm opinion that everything happens for a reason. Whether we figure out how to make it work, or if it’s just fate, generally things do work out in the end.