In the summer of 2017 I got this insatiable urge to quit my job. It wasn’t like I’d never wanted to quit before; after all we’ve all had those Monday’s where we wake up calculating all the different permutations and combinations of things we can do to never have to go to work again. This time though, it was different. It wasn’t the laziness behind not wanting to get out of bed, or the dread of having to mingle with my coworkers for 7.5 hours. It was the realization that I was completely wasting my life and potential doing work that was utterly meaningless to me.
When you realize that this is your only life to live, and you’re living it fulfilling someone else’s purpose, every single minute that you don’t make a change becomes unbearable.
So I quit! and here’s how I did it…
Mentally take note of what’s holding you back
If you’re anything like me, you’ll know what it feels like to crave financial security. Of course I wanted to leave, but I didn’t want to be poor. I’d secured a great reputation at my job as one of the top performers and was making more than enough money to live comfortably. So I wanted to quit but…
- I didn’t want a reduced standard or living.
- I didn’t want my financial independence to be negatively affected.
Outline what you want to gain
So I didn’t want to be poor! Great! and I didn’t want to live someone else’s dream. Ok! but what did I want?
- I wanted to spend my time doing what matters the most to me.
This was all I knew at the time, but it turns out that it was more than enough to work off of.
Figure out what matters the most to you!
Here’s where I hit a bit of a roadblock. I had a good idea of what mattered to me…
- Spending time with my loved ones.
- Traveling around the world.
- Immersing myself into new cultures.
…but how on earth does one monetize these things? No one’s gonna pay you to spend time with your family(unless you’re Kimmy K). So how do you make money and do what you love at the same time? You start by…
Talking through it as many times as you need to
If you haven’t figured it out already, I’m a big advocate of therapy or life coaching. Making big decisions is tough, and the answers to achieving your dreams usually lie buried somewhere in your subconscious. Talking through your goals and desires with someone who just let’s you talk often leads to discoveries, which then lead to actionable steps.
When I finally quit my job in September, I had a rush of people who couldn’t wait to tell me how brave I was, and how they could never quit. What they didn’t know was that it’d taken me two sessions with an expert to make the ultimate decision to leave. Here’s what my therapist helped me uncover:
- Success was ingrained into who I was, not where I was. If I had worked hard to be successful there, then I could do it anywhere.
- I didn’t have to have everything figured out right away. I just needed to take the process one step at a time.
- It didn’t matter what others thought about what I decided to do. What mattered was that I’d be happy doing it.
- I eventually wanted to to work for myself/own my own business.
- …and most importantly; She helped me narrow down my urge to travel. I learned through talking that really wanted to live in Europe. I had family there that I wanted to spend more time with, and living there would enable me to explore the continent with ease.
Make a plan
Once I figured this out, it was time to write out just how I planned on getting myself there.
- Research. How had others achieved this goal? What were the requirements to live/work there? What specific country did I want to live in?
- Brush up my resume. I started this step by asking myself what kind of job would help me develop the skills I needed to one day branch off on my own, and then I tailored my resume to fit those jobs.
Tip: Look up jobs you’d like to have, pick the skills/qualifications from the job description that match your skillset, add those skills to your resume.
Take a leap of faith!
Warning! None of the above steps will be easy. I applied to a ton of jobs and didn’t hear back. I’d resolved to quit my job in 3 months regardless of whether I found a new one or not and just keep trying. Luckily for me, with a ton of hard work and perseverance, it didn’t take up to 3 months to land the job of my dreams! and you can too!