There are survival kits for the Rapture, World War III, and camping emergencies, but where's the kit for a layoff? That can feel like a catastrophe, leaving behind a mess almost worst than any hurricane could. A few years ago, I had a great job at a company that was on my Must-Work-There-Before-I-Die list. Then it all came to an end in what is often an unfortunate yet routine part of business: a layoff.
Talk about fight or flight during an emergency disaster: I flew...for two years...just flailing about in uncertainty and a depression that went from mild to severe.
Well, let me put you on to game: I would have got my career snapback on much sooner if I had the following essentials on lock before the layoff even happened:
First (Career) Aid
Have at least two motivational and two strategy books on deck to keep you from jumping off the mental ledge.Try Don't Settle for Safe by Sarah Jakes, The Woman Code by Sophia Nelson, and Getting to Yes by Roger Fisher and William Ury. The Power of Broke by Daymond John is another great one to have on hand. You'll need this knowledge when going in to talk severance pay, which can be negotiable. You have to speak up to get a good return on the years you invested your blood, sweat, and tears helping to make that company millions.
I'm also very spiritual, so having my Bible app and devotionals just a tap away was vital.
Your updated resume and an accounting of your career wins should also be in the mix. Just take an hour or so, twice a month, to write down teams you've been part of, promotions, appointments, or awards you've received, and specifics on how you've helped make or save the company money. During the job-seeking process, this helped me when routinely drawing a bitter mental blank after all the crying and wine-drinking.
(Financial) Survival Tools
If you've got Instagram but no Bank of America or Chase app, you're hustling backwards. Do a check on that coin, and update those apps.
I was so stuck on the This-Couldn't-be-Happening-to-Me Train, I also hadn't paid much attention to important deets of my accounts and services available to me, i.e. the fees associated with no longer having direct deposit, options for low-interest personal loans, and availability of credit products. Some banks even have programs for mortgage and auto loan holders who have been laid off. Get fond of that dreaded b-word: budgeting---and download apps like Mint and or Wally that can keep you accountable, help you save a rainy-day fund, and remain balanced in enjoying your life while being responsible.
Very important: Having information about your 401k, IRA, or life insurance policies handy is like that emergency condom or tampon you keep in your bag at all times.
A last resort option is to withdraw or transfer funds for emergencies, so you'll want to go ahead and get hip on tax penalties and limits while you have options, not when your back is against the wall. (And yes, there's a thing called whole life insurance where nobody has to go to Glory to cash in.)
My pride kept me from filing for unemployment initially, but it ain't sexy to have options for paying your rent and car note at your fingertips, yet still face eviction or repossession. Keep unemployment insurance information handy---phone numbers, steps on how to file, job programs and offices, and most importantly, your rights. Add to that list: numbers to your health insurance company to talk about COBRA coverage options (Healthcare.org or your HR rep is a good start for this), or your union rep (if you're part of one).
Control the fall-out and snapback after a layoff on your own terms. Though it can be a very challenging and trying time, you can turn it into one of the best moments of your life.
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This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
Watching Angela “Blac Chyna” White’s transformation in real-time has truly been a sight to see. It wasn’t that long ago that she announced that she was reversing her cosmetic surgeries in an effort to go back to who she was before the world came to know her as Blac Chyna. In previous interviews, she stated that she was dissolving her facial and lip fillers, removing her breast implants, and getting a butt reduction, as well as removing the dimple piercings that enhanced her fame and controversial tattoos.
In a recent Tamron Hall interview, the mother of two said that she has “fully recovered” from the procedures. She is also celebrating one year of sobriety and opened up about being worried about how her new journey would be received by others.
“I’ve been in the entertainment industry for so long, right, and of course, like, you know, coming out, I’m like young, I’m gonna do wild things as we all have,” she said.
“...I feel like by me being vocal and showing everybody you can change your life and things can get better, like through myself, that right there is an accomplishment, and that’s a part of freedom, too.”
But as she started on her journey, many people have shown her grace, which is something she’s grateful for. “And then the fact that people have been showing me grace, it’s like amazing,” she said. “And I feel like when I did it, I just did it. It was more so like spiritual thing and I feel like people see that, and I’ve always been like my authentic self, so what you see is kinda what you get with me, and that’s just kinda what it is.”
Chyna, who recently received an honorary doctorate from Sacramento Theology Seminary and Bible College, has also repaired her relationship with her mom, Tokyo Toni. The social media celebrity surprised her daughter on the Tamron Hall Show. Prior to the sentimental surprise, Chyna dished on the reconciliation and having a better understanding of her mom.
“I must say, some of the things I have to take accountability for because, like my actions. As a mother, you don’t want to see your daughter doing certain things ‘cause it’s like it doesn’t matter what my past was or what we’re going through, I didn’t raise you that way,” she admitted. “So, it’s like, okay, maybe I was a little bit wrong. Maybe I was acting out a little bit. But I feel like as we grow older, I kinda see more, and I understand more.”
Chyna will be starring in season two of Fox's reality competition show Special Forces: World's Toughest Test.
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Feature image by Kevin Winter/Getty Images