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Last week, I got laid off. So why do I feel amazing?

25% of my company got laid off last week. It was my first in-house copywriting gig for a brand, and it made me feel important. So why do I feel freer than ever, one week into unemployment?

I was ascribing so much of my self-worth to having this job. And yet, during the daily grind, I frequently grappled with feelings of not being good enough, getting contradictory feedback in all directions, and feeling underpaid for the amount of work I was doing. It took me a week away to realize that this job wasn't making me feel good about myself.

I felt like I was the last to know about everything going on at the company. I was expected to do the homework on business affairs by myself, or else, hear it through the grapevine. There was a serious lack of process at the company. Timelines seemed to apply to me and other creatives, but never to the C-levels who were reviewing our work. Briefs were delivered to us incomplete, but naturally, we were expected to deliver the work in its entirety. New requests would be added late in the timeline. I told myself this was all part of being an in-house creative. And that's still true.

I've only just dipped my toes into freelancing, but the opportunities are already bountiful. I can set my own hours and rates. I can commute to a doctor's appointment freely without losing 2 hours of my workday. I'm feeling a newfound sense of freedom that I never felt full-time.

Of course, certain benefits like medical coverage make the full-time struggle worth it. But I feel like my mental health has improved drastically ever since I was laid off. Even on the day it was announced -- and we were let go the same day -- I didn't feel sad, just surprised. I will definitely miss my team, but I just feel like a new chapter has opened, the opportunities limitless. I used to feel scared of freelance, but I'm actually excited to build up my portfolio and diversify the list of industries I can write copy for.

The bottom line is, I've learned through this process that I shouldn't base my self-worth on something as temporary as a job, no matter how prestigious. My self-worth must come from within: my talent and skill, the joy I derive from copywriting. That, no one can ever take away from me.