For a lot of years, my job was demanding, I was overworked yet I traveled the world and I made a ton of money. The demands of my job consisted of long grueling hours, many days and nights away from my family and little time left to pursue what I really wanted to do. The only consolation was that I made a ton of money, so I stayed.
As the company was expanding, more demands were being placed on me, but so was more money. However, I was not happy because I felt my life was wasting away in a cubicle and I was supposed to be doing something else. I would spend hours daydreaming of how things would be after I quit. My heart wanted to leave the job but my mind knew I had way too many bills to pay for and a family to support which required two incomes for support. To top it off, my relationship was suffering because we barely saw each other except on weekends. When I came home I felt I was on vacation, I lived out of my suitcase and I was always working on the next deal to close or trying to work on something to bring m dreams and goals to life. My partner was simply going to work 9-5, coming home to manage the house and wait for me to call during the week. When we got together, he wanted to do all sorts of things and I either wanted to sleep or build my business in between deals.
Eventually, my job began to take its toll on my relationship as well as my dreams and goals. I began to resent the job, the people who worked there and the people I worked for. I began to loathe what I had majored in while attending college wishing I had chosen another profession which gave me more financial and physical freedom. Ultimately I began to blame my partner for his lack of enthusiasm in me wanting to build a business. I hated my life and I was starting to unravel as I felt stuck. I would listen to any available suggestions of “Quit your job and pursue your dreams now!” to give me a reason to quit and walk away from it all. Yet, I would soon find out that I wasn’t listening to the part where I needed to put a plan together for when the day came when I would leave the job. And I wasn’t listening to my partner tell me he needed me. I was all about “self” and I was about to suffer great loss.
As time went along, my job performance began to suffer and I was barely going to work. All my excuses were valid from using PTO (paid time off) or from figuring out how to make appointments I could verify so I could get out of work. It finally got to the point where I got laid off with a severance package and all the benefits to last me a few months.
But soon afterwards reality hit.
I had gotten my wish. I was no longer employed where I didn’t want to be and my relationship……well that had ended, too. Looking back, I can see where I’d messed up. I had no plan and most importantly, I didn’t make my relationship a priority so it failed, too. Instead of communicating what I needed and creating a plan, my lack of communicating and lack of planning caused me to fail greatly.
But there is good news! I’ve since pulled out of that valley and on my journey here’s what I’ve learned and I want to share it with you in three (3) easy steps so you don’t have to take this path.
Put the job that’s causing you grief into perspective. What this means is put some thought into why you work where you work, why you do what you do for that company and how much value does the job bring to your life, your inner peace and happiness and your relationship.
Sometimes we’ve been doing things for so long or because of tradition we stop seeing the big picture because we’ve become lost in the frame. Instead of allowing a job to cause you to lose your livelihood there are things you can do to reduce the risk of losing our job or becoming resentful in the process of wanting to leave to pursue other things.
One key thing that has helped me is to create an ideal schedule and align it with the company’s initiatives and goals. If your company has an open door policy bring your idea to the manager and see what can be designed for you to give them what they need so you can get what you want. I would not suggest you lay out your plans to pursue your dreams and goals. Stick to your work functions and save the personal pursuits for home. The more benefits you can show them which are also practical, the more likely they will agree to your idea or some similar form. Then again, quitting with a back up plan is always an option.
Began to live the schedule you’ve created and incorporate your relationship and your business into it as you would like to see it on a regular basis. Prior to me landing one of my clients, I wrote on a piece of paper the following: “My ideal day consists of me waking up at 5:00 a.m., working out until 7:30 a.m., coming home to cook for my family and eat together from 8:30-9:45 a.m., then prepare to go to my client for 11:00 a.m. I’ve completed my work for the client by 6:00 p.m. and I head home to prepare for the next day….etc.” Not only did this actually happen and it is almost my current life now, I did this for how my ideal life would look! And it all showed up over time. Some things came fast and some things took a little time. However, I’m happier, more fulfilled and more aligned with my purpose compared to before. My relationship has a solid foundation to stand on because my partner knows he is a priority. I also don’t worry about whether I hate my job or having time to build my business because my schedule allows for me to work, take care of my family and build my business in the process.
Communicate to your partner. Usually I put communication at the top of my list. However, in this case, communicating in Step 3 was the best order because you need time to think things out for yourself before you involve someone else. By the time you’re ready to talk about what you want with your partner, you would have had time to sort through your own thoughts without interruption and opinions so you can make a good choice. Also, it takes the stress off the relationship because your partner isn’t worried or feeling like you are about to put the family in limbo just because you’re seeking change. And lastly, once you have the actual facts you will be able to answer their questions a lot better with some thought and be less reactive if the support isn’t there just yet.
At the end of the day, losing my job and relationship, then not having enough money to commit to building my business taught me to decide what was important before I made a move. My observations have shown that we should know what we want and if a way didn’t exist in how to get it, create a way. Write down our plans, specifically as we truly see them and stick to it. Lastly communicate and put the relationship first. And yes you almost eliminate the toll your job is putting on your relationship and start up business if YOU managed it and have a plan.