Feeling so bad for ex-colleagues, lost trust in leadership, don’t know when the next round of layoffs are. How do I gain motivation to start working like before?
This is an interesting (and good) question, thanks for asking! I think it goes to show how much the landscape has changed and how this will affect different "generations" of the tech industry differently. I know a lot of people who joined the industry in the past 5 years, including my mentees, who have never seriously thought about layoffs before. This was especially true if they went to FAANG companies straight out of school. And well, now they need to think about it, and that's an overwhelming mentality shift.
For me on the other hand, I have been exposed to layoffs constantly:
That being said, I have 2 core pieces of advice here:
This is all easier than done of course, but one of the most powerful things you can do for your career is to make your mentality more resilient and positive. Community helps a lot figuring all this out and finding solidarity, and luckily for you, you're part of one of the best tech communities around with Taro Premium.
Another thing I forgot to mention is that if you're working at a reputable company like Meta or Stripe, you will almost certainly get a very healthy severance package that should be enough to carry you to the next opportunity (of course, this is much trickier if you're on an employment visa or something). This will allow you to either double-dip by finding a job before it runs out or give you some time to relax, clear your mind, have some fun, and do some soul searching.
Life is a constant roller coaster. The ride is more fun when you believe in your own ability to pick yourself up and see everything as a door to your next opportunity.
I really like Alex's answer. My philosophical answer boils down to understanding (1) why do you do what you do and (2) what can you control?