Letting Go

Earlier today someone said that some company-employee relationships are somewhat comparable to facebook friends.  They decide to hire you and add you up as a "friend".  You work and please them, they give you likes, follows and sometimes even leave a comment for a job well done.  And when they are done with you, as soon as they have everything that they can get from you, they replace you and "unfriend" you.  So impersonal and detached.  

Imagine this.  An international company providing services in more than a hundred countries.  Existing for more than a century.  Ranking at the top, being benchmarked by others.  Provides excellent benefits to their employees.  Sold their own office building one day.  Sold a business entity the other.  Now the whole company is being owned by the competitor and they are now taking over its operations.  So what's next?  People losing their jobs.  At first, they are being promised that changes will take effect a year after.  But you just find out one day that you are one of the employees that the company has to let go.  You.  The top performer.  The first to arrive in the office.  The one who spent extra hours/days in the office just to get everything right.  The one who treated the company as if it was their own.  The one who stayed loyal for decades despite of the many challenges.  The one who sacrificed time with family and friends just to close the business deal.  The one who had a miscarriage a month ago.  And they just hand you the pink slip (discharge notice) as if merely clicking the unfriend button.  

The office became your second home.  Co-workers became family/friends.  You share ideas, hopes, and dreams with each other; share smiles, laughter and tears; share fears and insecurities;  you go on adventures and invite each other out to just chill and relax; you help lift each other; you became a source of strength and inspiration to one another; together you became stronger.  5 days a week you spend time with them making the 8-hour work (sometimes even more) just bearable.  You don't always get to have that.  Comfort and familiarity.  And all of the sudden it has to stop.  You have no choice.  You have to leave.

Lessons learned.  You have to keep something for yourself.  Realize that you have a life outside of your work.  Because what do they provide when a family member dies?  Flowers?  Cards?  You can never bring back the time when you should have been there for that basketball game your son had instead of taking the clients out for a drink.  Yes, you are working hard.  But I guess we just need to have a sense of work-life balance.  Do not give the company your all not unless it is your own because at the end of the day, it is your health that is important; it is your family/friends who care; it is your personal life that really matters.  At the end of the day, what matters to them is their profit and how much they are able to cut costs.  Maybe start young so you still have more energy and you don't have that much responsibility yet - learn to look for other ways to make money while on that 8 to 5 grind so that you don't have to rely so much on that one source of income.  Just make sure that it does not create conflict of interest.

Well and good if you are in a company who prioritizes their employees needs, much more if you are able to establish friendships with colleagues and bosses - cherish those moments and invest in those friendships so it continues.  But up until when will they provide you with these benefits?  What if they need to layoff employees?  What if they need to lay you off?  Some companies give ample time and give you hints at an early stage.  But what if they don't?  Learn from others and don't wait for it to happen to you.  You'll never know when its time to let go and say goodbye.

At a time like this it is never easy.  But as the saying goes... When a door closes, windows of opportunities open.  And I am quoting what I wrote on my previous post, "We may have a lot of unanswered questions and maybe some of them are best left just like that (atm).  But we have to move forward no matter how difficult/ confusing/ frustrating life gets.  This is how we understand and discover the meaningful answers to the whys.  It may not be clear now, but someday things will make sense."

If I seem distant.. Baby, I am
Words are like scissors in your hands
There's no script to follow
So I just close my eyes
That way it won't hurt so much when we say goodbye

My heart feels like a circus
Its too much to take in
Its hard to lose a love
But you were my best friend

-Say Goodbye, Katharine McPhee


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