How to stay motivated in spite of massive layoffs

Yes motivation can transform from a temporary feeling into a permanent state of mind.

Samanja Cartagena
7 min readJan 22, 2023
Samanja Cartagena
What do you see? The forest or the trees?

Imagine that we are trees in an enormous forest. You are one individual tree, I am one tree in a giant forest of tech workers. If there is fire in the forest it is more than likely that we all get affected even if we do not get burned. Our fellow workers create our environment. Happy co-workers create a positive environment and unhappy co-workers create a negative one. Our co -workers affect us not just personally but also professionally. Their sadness would discourage us from giving our best shot. So, even if you didn’t get laid off and you have been reading the news about all the layoffs your worries that somehow all of this will affect you is 100 percent valid. It is ok to be worried about getting laid off, or AI replacing humans, or giant tech companies not doing well enough and cutting costs. As a tech worker, you did not just wake up one day and became a tech worker. You have breathed technology, you have been up all night coding or studying. You have given your life into it, sacrificed family gatherings, friendships and breathed life into your career. What if all of that was for nothing? Anyone telling you not to worry is asking you to be delusional. All of these are valid and legit worries that needs to be processed instead of being avoided.

But how do you process such worries?

Worries never leave you, they will be there in your heart. You just need to learn how to live with it. Sad, but its called life.

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I said we need to learn how to live with worries, not get dragged into it. Not live on it, but live with it. The best way to handle worries is to accept that it will be there in your mind instead of trying to dismiss it. Hit the gym instead of sitting at home. Go out with friends instead of staying alone. Read a book, or watch a movie. Worries are not going anywhere, just learn how to live with it. Imagine your worries as an annoying roommate. You have to learn how to tolerate them. That way you are not dismissing your worries, you are just not giving any power to it. Remember, your worries will not work for you it will always work against you. The worst thing worries can do is ruin your motivation. You can be super hyped up to work harder one minute but the next minute you can be bombarded with worries about paying the bills or something like that and you can end up losing all your motivation. My goal in this article is to teach you how to stay motivated through it all. The best way to remain motivated through worries is not to give it any power. Be reactive instead of proactive. Your worries wont disappear if you shoo it away. They will always be there like the big scary monster in the room. But just like you would avoid a nasty roommate you can avoid your worries but keep in mind its not going anywhere but you have to tolerate it and work your life past it. This acknowledgement will help you stay motivated. Don't let your worries control you and ruin your motivation.

Samanja Cartagena

Various studies have proved time and time again that working out reduces stress and also keeps us motivated psychologically. Try forming a habit of working out a lot. That way, your motivation remains higher than usual. No matter what life throws at you, make sure to hit the gym everyday if possible. In order to make motivation your permanent state of mind you have to keep working towards acquiring it. Motivation wont come naturally even if you win the lottery. You have to keep working for it. Hitting the gym regularly is one way of working for cultivating your motivation.

Staying organized

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Keep your workspace neat and clean and above all organized. People who tell you that being unorganized and dirty does not affect your state of mind are lying. A clean bedroom and a nice workspace will keep you motivated. Above all, as a tech worker you need a separate workspace, a library of important tech books and a clean desktop. Things can get messy very quickly. There are courses on how to keep your computer clean. These are extremely important. Keeping everything in order will keep your motivation level high otherwise you will begin to lose it.

How to stay motivated in tech?

Tech requires a lot of motivation because of the competition and because of how vast it can all be. You can be asked how to work with Google Cloud, JavaScript API, AWS and algorithms all for one job of building a navbar. And than there are beloved fellow tech workers who can be a know it all. Than there are people who are getting into tech from other lines of work. Now, do not look at your co-workers as deadly competition that you need to crush. Instead get inspired work harder. Did you really get into tech because you did not like challenges? Than this profession is not for you. You have to enjoy challenges and problem solving. Take inspiration from competition. Work harder, study all the time, keep learning. Get more certifications, more projects to showcase in your portfolio, network with more people. Do not limit yourself as one kind of a worker such as an AWS expert or a JavaScript expert. There are no limits in tech and you can be an expert in many fields and that is the beauty of it. You are an extremely smart person with a vast amount of knowledge because you are surviving in tech. See the beauty in your profession.

Samanja Cartagena

Taking actions is the key to staying motivated

So how do we manage to stay motivated in life through it all? Life can throw many challenges your way. There can be family dramas, divorces, separation from friends, the economy, layoffs, how do you as a tech worker stay motivated through it all. The answer is simple, take actions. Not doing anything will send you spiraling into a pit of darkness. When I was worried about finding a job I wrote a book on JavaScript. My time was well spent and a great job did come my way. Now, that all these discouraging news are heading my way I have decided to create a Udemy tutorial. I am constantly taking actions that keeps me super motivated all the time. I dont care about the consequences, I keep pushing and pushing. I am hoping that one day my career would reach such a height that nothing will be able to stop me from doing what I love.

The biggest secret of staying motivated

Do things that you do not have to do. Walk that extra mile. If you are cleaning your room and did not initially plan on cleaning your windows. Than clean your windows too. Exceed your expectations. If you were planning to finish one course initially, finish two. Get another certification, or apply for another job. Be extra and do extra things. I have a real estate license and I am a computer programmer. People have often asked me why? My argument was that when I can do more why should I settle for doing less. My real estate career had its own challenges but it has kept me motivated when it was hard for me to find a tech job. Plus, both my real estate career and tech career has kept me busy. Staying busy made me feel important. I have always felt like my life had a purpose and I am an important contributing member of society.

Doing more than that is required will provide extra motivation. My favorite author Dr. Wayne Dyer repeatedly says in all of his books. “You attract what you are, not what you desire” . In conclusion if you do more, you will attract more. By having two careers, I am doing more and I feel good about myself. Hence, I am hoping that good things will come my way. Hoping good things will come your way too. Stay motivated!!!

Samanja Cartagena
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