I’ve felt quite stressed just lately and I think I’ve finally worked out why. In November I’ll have been at my current job for a year. A year is the milestone I’ve always had in my mind when I think I should be starting to look around and see if there’s anything better. At some point, someone will offer me £10k more to do the same job as I do now, assuming I actually put myself out there.

That’s all fine. I’m content with that.

What stresses me though is the thought of references from my previous job. When I left my previous job, my ex boss promised me a glowing reference. That’s already sounding alarm bells, because I came to form the opinion that anything he promised had a very low chance of happening. He also said he’d provide me with a copy that I could “keep on file”. Guess what: that didn’t happen. So, hmm. The thought that he could sabotage me with a bad reference is a bit disconcerting. I don’t really think he would, but I hardly left on good terms. I mean, I was polite about it, but I left because I thought he was useless and I’m pretty sure he picked up on that!

I looked up the law on references. References must be fair and accurate, which means that he couldn’t really give me a bad reference without opening up a legal avenue (which I absolutely would pursue). He couldn’t even safely write something truthful because I could argue it was unfairly selective and misleading. They actually use my work as the leading example of their abilities and achievements on their website, even now, almost a year since I left. He could hardly justify a bad reference.

So maybe I’m just being paranoid here, but I made sure the current website snapshot is saved in the Wayback Machine and I’ve downloaded a copy and put it on my Google Drive so it’s timestamped.


This is how my mind is working at the moment. On the one hand I’m pragmatic and prepared and I’ll be grateful for it if I end up suing him, but on the other, I’m not sure a calmer mind would be exploring this eventuality.

I am trying harder to stop the spiralling thoughts. I’ve prepared, it’s fine, I can leave it at that. And breathe… I didn’t have to do this when I was on citalopram.

Oh yes, and the other thing is that if I am going to start doing a passive-ish job search again then I need to get back on LinkedIn. I deleted my profile a few months ago because I received a few unwanted messages from SOMEBODY from my previous job. I left my previous job because of bullying. My boss was useless in resolving it. That’s the summary. When I got this person contacting me on LinkedIn, it didn’t bother me much but I just deleted my profile because it wasn’t doing anything useful for me and it didn’t make sense to let it serve as a way for her to deliver messages to me. But I need to get back on there. I don’t really want to do that because… I don’t want to make myself able to be contacted by her, I suppose. I don’t want her knowing where I work. I know I can block her but she used two different accounts to send the messages. I can’t block accounts she hasn’t created yet.

It connects me virtually to somewhere I want to leave behind.

8 thoughts on “Paranoia?

  1. On the other hand people generally ask for the last 2 employers so after your next new job you won’t have to use him again 🙂
    I don’t know why people still bother asking for references, most just confirm that you worked there & dates & job title. Apparently the agency were on the phone for 15 mins with one of my referees, definitely not the “just a couple of questions” they told me it’d be.

    Wow! 10k sounds like a sizable pay rise.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, 10k might be a little bit optimistic now with the pandemic destroying the economy but it’s good to be optimistic! I think my salary is probably about average now for my level, but I can do better than average 🙂 If I hadn’t been so eager to get out of my previous job then I would have negotiated on my salary for this job, so I think I could be doing a bit better at least.

      That sounds intriguing about them being on the phone for so long. Do you know what they were discussing?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Plus a phone number could be anyone. Anyway I haven’t heard anything back from the agency so my references must be ok


      2. Yes, always good to know your worth against market value. Sometimes working for a smaller company for less pay and better opportunities is worthwhile, There are other ways to show appreciation, as long as they actually show appreciation! One of my bosses brought us pay day bacon butties! & always made the brews. He said that was my biggest weakness, my inability to make a decent brew.

        Liked by 1 person

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