You are unemployed. Okay, that’s a fact. You want to become employed. Good. That’s looking to the future. You are bitter/hurt/disappointed/angry about why you became unemployed. Fair enough, BUT. You can’t move forward if your focus is on the past. Make up your mind. Do you want to get hired or justify the unfairness of your situation to the poor soul ambushed by your negative passion?
As previously discussed your unemployment makes others uncomfortable. Don’t compound that by going on about why you became jobless in the first place. Your boss was jealous of your brilliant career arc and had to get rid of his competition. Fine. The economy tanked and the last hired became first fired. Extra Fine. (In)Accurate rumors were circulating about you regarding your fill in the blank here and that got you fired. Super Fine. You really weren’t good at your job and they had to fire you. They even had you escorted out of the building by security carrying a cardboard box of your pitiful belongings. Right past the desk of that girl you just asked out. The one that now refuses to return your calls. It just doesn’t matter. Really it doesn’t. What absolutely matters now is how you handle it.
So how do you handle it. Very little, that’s how. Focus your conversations on becoming employed. What do you offer, what do you want, etc. Unless you have a very good “becoming unemployed” story, don’t mention it. If they ask then be honest, brief, and emotionless. Don’t be embarrassed or apologetic. If you can’t be emotionless at least try to be a little humorous. Don’t compound their unease by making them feel that they’ve entered your negative soap opera. Help them feel good about you and want to help. Connect with them, don’t push them away. Even the worst firing situation doesn’t have to cripple your future if you decide not to let it. And the best story can only help you if you keep it short and allow it to be a segue into talking about your future.
So how do you know you’re overly obsessed with why you became unemployed? There are two simple things to look for. First, do you speak with passion? Does your voice rise and you tense up? Second, do you talk about it longer than a sentence or two? You might need help from a friend or family member for this but I bet you already know.
Remember. Keep it short and simple and look to the future.
This is one of my fundamentals of unemployment.