Moving on

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By: Anja Uitdehaag

Earlier this week I finally managed to visit “Huys van Roosevelt” in Oud-Vossemeer, a small village in the Netherlands.

Huys van Roosevelt” is a restaurant that was on my to-do list already for over nine months.

Not because of the Rich history of both the village and the restaurant (The ancestors of the well-known former presidents of the USA, Theodore and Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his spouse Eleanor Roosevelt, are originally from Oud-Vossemeer. The rich history of these world leaders comes to life in the brasserie and restaurant through beautiful photos and inspiring quotes, the Roosevelt Information Center, the ‘The Four Freedoms’ monument, the Dutch Reformed Church and the place where the ancestors of the legendary world leaders used to live) but because I was eager to catch up with Bas, the restaurant owner. Bas is an ex-colleague from a big International Company, who made this very interesting career move from factory departmental manager to restaurant owner after the company closure 2 years ago.

I was curious to see how he was doing.

Let’s face it: getting laid off can be one of life’s most stressful experiences. The higher you are in the organisation, the greater the harrowing impact.

The first reactions to being fired are usually anger, pain, sadness and shame.

You are left with the question: what is next?

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While losing a job for sure can be a traumatic event, a victim mentality can prevent you from moving forward with your life.

For Bas, the company closure was the end of a long chapter in his Big International Corporate Career.

He took the time to build himself back up and find a new beginning. He decided to not take any important life decision in the heat of the moment but truly think through his options.

Bas made from a bad time a good opportunity to rethink his career. He was sure about one thing: his next job should be properly matched to his interests, skills, experience and personality. He also considered it an opportunity to do something completely different with his life.

And it is true: an enforced sabbatical provides an excellent opportunity for self-discovery:

  • Who are you?
  • Why do you do what you do?
  • What do you really want to do for work?

Bas managed to break through from his current situation and opened up his life to very different and exciting opportunities around him.

He used his exit as an entrance into entrepreneurship. Together with 2 business partners he started his own restaurant and entertainment concept: “Huys van Roosevelt”.

How he feels about this drastic career move?

“Life has meaning for me as long as I feel stimulated. What I am doing now does not feel like work. It is a way of living. Work, play and life are intertwined. Every evening I fall asleep exhausted, fulfilled and ready for tomorrow”. (Quoting Bas)

Maybe getting fired is not as horrible as it seems at first, especially if you use the time to pursue a new chapter in your career.

Bas proved that getting laid off can be a positive experience.

He emerged a true winner. I take my hat off!

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Your story, our platform: If you’ve got a story and would like to share it with other Femflectors, please let us know. Femflection is all about transferring learnings to help others, be they big or subtle. We want to connect with your feelings, your learnings, your reflections or your hopes for the future – in blog or interview format. Express yourself here. Get in touch with us via anja.uitdehaag@femflection.com

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