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When asked why you left your last job, your answer should be true, concise and as positive as possible.
"Don't lead your resume, cover letter or interviews with bad news," says Nason.
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"Anything from 'the new boss wanted to bring in his own team' to 'the entire department was downsized' is better than admitting you lost your job due to your own performance." Remember that getting fired is never as horrible as it seems at first, especially if you use the time to pursue a new chapter in your career.
While it's common to feel anger toward your former employer, taking legal action is viable only in certain cases.
"The experience of being fired from a job is high on the list of stressful life events that can happen to anyone over the course of their employment," says Dr.
Melodie Schaefer, executive director of The Chicago School, Southern California Counseling Centers.
"If there's a manager who has a prejudice against someone in those protected classes and fires them -- that's actionable." Dennis Nason, CEO of Nason & Nason, an executive recruitment firm, adds, "If you're thinking about suing your previous employer, unless you have a very strong case, it's not going to get you anywhere.
My advice is to move on." Once you've allowed some time to mend emotionally and have gotten over the anger of being fired, it's time to set sail on a new course. "Ask yourself if you were in the right position, or if you need to rethink your career." Career coach Ann Mehl suggests finding a coach or a friend to help you outline your past accomplishments and rebrand yourself in the job market.