How Getting Laid Off During the Oil & Gas Crisis Changed my Life
If you own a car, you’re probably a happy camper when filling up your tank these days, as it’s a significantly cheaper experience than it was a year and a half ago. Perhaps you can treat yourself to a nice venti latte & rockslide brownie (guess where I’m sitting while writing this?) with the leftover money that you would have otherwise spent on a full tank. Isn’t life beautiful?
Depends whom you ask.
With the drop in oil prices also came a significant drop in jobs. And guess what? I was part of that drop.
My Job in the Oil & Gas Industry
Approximately this time last year, my life took a complete turn. I had a well paying (who am I kidding? extremely well paying when compared to my previous jobs) regional position in Oil & Gas. There were parts of my job that I liked, a lot of things that I wanted to change, and particularly a lot of peace I needed to make with myself for working in an environment that slowly didn’t resonate with my personal values and beliefs anymore at all.
My Layoff from the Oil & Gas Industry
At the beginning of a new week, I was asked to meet my boss in the HR’s office, and the rest is history. Was I surprised? Of course not. I had been part of boardroom layoff discussions for months, saw people permanently leaving our office almost weekly, and knew that nobody was safe. I had even gone through this scenario hypothetically in my head before, and secretly hoped that if they were to cut people in our team, I would be the one. Although I didn’t clearly have a plan if it did happen, I knew that I would be ok. Every other member of my team was male and the main bread earner in his family. I figured I could probably survive losing my job suddenly more easily than they might.
And so I did.
I went back home and spent a week to take it all in (and to detoxify from the negative energy that I’d been coping with). I also went through a cleaning crisis and gave away all my corporate office clothes (because deep down, I knew that I wasn’t going back there anytime soon).
After a week, I was ready to sit down with my husband and discuss our next adventure. We both knew that changing countries and starting our own businesses were top priorities, because in a sea of things that felt wrong, these were the only two things that felt 100% right. I already had my coaching certificate and had practiced coaching and business consulting on the side of my job, and my husband was full of ideas for a potential logistics and courier business. We both loved Romania, and going back to the country where I was born was a long-time dream of mine, so we decided Romania it was! Did we feel like we had enough money saved to do this? Absolutely not! Just a week earlier, our financial priorities were completely different. But we both had a burning desire to do this, and we went for it.
Losing my job during the oil & gas crisis was a meaningful event that brought me to a new stage in life that I was longing for, but wasn’t brave enough to leap into.
New Country, New Career
My husband and I are both thankful for where we are today. We love our new country of residence and entrepreneurial experience, and most of all, we value living freely and doing things our own way (we were both a little bit stubborn when working for someone else).
With the modest savings that we had, we managed to establish two businesses in separate industries, pay for our living expenses, and travel on a budget to a few countries that were on our bucket list. Our businesses are growing, and we learn a lot from them every day. Do we always get things right? No. We use our best knowledge and insight, sometimes make mistakes, learn, and grow. We don’t have many strict rules, but two things are really important to us: to listen to our intuition and to do what feels right, no matter what others may think or tell us. It’s the only way we found that we could live this dream fully.
Are You Facing Anything Similar?
If you’re perhaps facing a layoff or another event that may seem difficult to digest in your life, I would like to invite you to sit with it and question where it’s attempting to bring you. More likely than not, there is magic lying underneath it, awaiting to be revealed if you choose to explore it.
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