I was fired from my Stockbroker position in 2012. Up to that point, I had never been dismissed from a job. The day before, I drove home in quite a mood. I had a rough day and was contemplating my career choice. As I drove home, I had an epiphany. I began realizing that I was making enough money to maintain a home, transportation, food, child support, and clothes on my back. Slowly, my foul mood was turning around and suddenly, I was smiling. What did I have to complain about? I’ve got a good job. It provides me with everything I need. What do I have to complain about? I decided that day to approach my work the next day with gusto!
I showed up the next day and was excited to get to work. I didn’t even pull out the chair at my cubicle before someone lightly tapped me on the shoulder. It was my supervisor. He asked me to follow him before I logged in to my computer. Oddly, he was escorting me to the front lobby, away from the production floor. I still didn’t put two and two together. He took me into an office that was typically used for storage. Waiting inside was our Branch Manager, Seth. I thought to myself, “That’s funny? What could the Seth want? Are they going to give me an award?” Seth, spoke first, “Omar, the company has decided to part ways.” I was a little disoriented at this point. Part ways? What ways? It slowly sunk in. Are they letting me go? I asked, “Are you letting me go?” I got no answer. My supervisor, Carlos, handed me a pamphlet containing C.O.B.R.A. health benefits information, then another supervisor walked in with a box of my things collected from my desk. It took both supervisors to walk me out of the building. And with that, I was unemployed.
I wasn’t mad, nor was I worried. The day before made things clear to me; I don’t have to make a million dollars to be happy, I just must make enough to pay for the essentials in life. How hard could that be? I left that parking lot with a renewed sense of purpose. I had so many things and projects that I had shelved in favor of focusing on my job. Now I had no job, thus I had no restrictions.
I went home and gave myself a weeklong vacation. I applied for unemployment and began receiving unemployment checks that would last an entire year. In that time, I focused on a speaking career which resulted in contracted work which kept me busy and flourishing. The unemployment checks dwindled in amounts as I began getting more and more speaking work. Before too long, I was applying to an industry I never thought I would return to. Within 4 months, I was promoted to an Account Manager position at a new firm and then became a District Manager in charge of over 40 client accounts. I was still receiving speaking work and was now thriving in my new managerial role.
In 2021, I voluntarily resigned from my managerial position and was no longer employed again. I didn’t file for unemployment benefits, and it wasn’t just because I would not be eligible. It was because I was now pursuing my own business. In May, I launched Desert Ocean Media LLC, a Social Media Management company. I haven’t lost sight of the fact that, if I make enough money to cover the life essentials, I’m golden! Anything more is a bonus.
Getting fired from a job doesn’t have to be the end of anything, only a beginning to something greater.
-Omar Tarango is a Freelance Blogger and Social Media Manager-