Updated: Jun 11, 2020
1. DECIDE TO DO IT
2. DO IT
Quitting your job is easy. And it's also the hardest thing you may ever do.
Were you expecting more? A 10 easy steps post?
I don't play like that.
I won't lie: I don't know how long it would have taken me to hand in my resignation at my corporate engineering job if I hadn't been laid off.
I was having panic attacks at work, alone in a dark conference room sitting on the floor.
I told the plant manager that I was having chest pain from the stress.
I told HR that I was experiencing anxiety and wanted help finding a solution.
I was, mercifully, let go. Under the umbrella of lay-offs.
I was given the gift of freedom. I took it and ran with it, transitioning smoothly into my then side business of dog behavior consulting. With the help of my own coach.
But I think I would have stayed much longer than would have been healthy. Because I was terrified of taking the leap. Scared Shitless.
I would have spent another couple months at least until my excuse of not having a large enough pile of savings in the bank became untrue. Then, I would have had to face the decision myself and do the scary thing.
The second time was much easier.
After almost three years of being self-employed, I experienced the lowest, darkest point in my life. I had stopped taking care of myself, putting myself and my health first, and it rapidly deteriorated. To the point of having regular suicidal thoughts and crushing depression.
I made the tough choice to get help.
Part of that was going back to corporate America.
I wanted a regular paycheck and excellent health insurance. I wanted to get back on my feet without the stress of running my own business.
I worked there for 6 months and made a full recovery. I did what I needed to do for myself.
This time, I requested ADA accommodations (another article coming soon on this topic) for my anxiety. I was able to have 2 days per week working at home, which made a big difference.
It wasn't enough to make that type of work environment sustainable for me long term, though.
Once I was healthy again, once I replenished my savings account and felt ready to get back to what I really wanted to be doing with my life, I quit.
Like I mentioned earlier, it was easier the second time.
I quit my job without another job lined up.
I quit my job with a small business that wasn't fully ramped up yet.
I did quit with a plan. I did quit with a safety net. I did quit responsibly.
I did what I needed to do for me.
I alluded to my thoughts of leaving to my manager. He knew I had been struggling with anxiety most of my time there.
One week later, I gave notice.
One working day after giving notice, I worked my last day.
After that, I didn't go back.
Yep, that's right. I gave one day notice.
Life is too short!
I had to do what was right for me.
My projects were wrapped up. I had no responsibilities or obligations. Why would I stay another 2 weeks? They weren't going to replace me in 2 weeks. My health was deteriorating again.
So, I quit.
Now, I am certainly not saying that you should do what I did.
You have to do what is right for you.
And there are many things you can do and have in place to make the terrifying prospect of quitting your job a whole lot easier to manage.
I'm not going to talk about those logistical things here.
You're an intelligent, fully capable adult human being. You can find those answers elsewhere.
What you need, that the internet can't give you, is the courage to take the leap.
If you're standing at the edge, hovering and scared shitless, I can help.
Email me. We'll talk.
You don't have to figure this all out on your own.
What would life be like it you were able to quit your job?
What might be possible if you had help?