I took a huge step this month. I quit my job.
I don’t know if it’s the media, society, or just something innate that tells us when we turn 30, or are in our thirties, we’re supposed to have everything figured out. Anything from your dating/marriage situation to your financial or career situation. For some reason there is this social expectation of being in your thirties that says you are now an adult, and being an adult should deter you from taking risks.
Clearly I don’t have everything figured out. What most people were doing shortly after college, meeting future husbands and blossoming into post-grad careers, are things that didn’t come to me until years and years later. Always the later bloomer I suppose. But one thing I am learning is not to let fear be a driving force in my life.
I graduated college and took a few jobs here and there trying to start a career. When I was 25 I finally got my chance to start in a well paying position with a good company. For nearly seven years I bounced around within the company trying to find my place. A sort of “advance myself” type growth pattern to give me as much of a perspective on the business as I could gain. For nearly 7 years I loved and hated different parts of the positions I took at the company. I held three different positions, received a couple bad reviews, got a few really great reviews. And suddenly I realized I was putting time and effort into a career that wasn’t giving back.
In my 7 years with this company I never saw a single promotion. I was always confused on my career path as defined by my management and when trying to forge my own path, I was shot down and dismissed. Those bad reviews I got, I was never told why I got them or how to improve. The review system seemed so arbitrary. But I had been there 7 years. Could I leave? I made a decent salary, I earned 19 days of vacation every year. I had a work from home option. Could I really leave this company and do as well?
I didn’t matter. For lack of a better phrase I was at a dead end. It was time to trust my intuition on new opportunities.
Great accomplishments start with the decision to try. I was feeling frustrated and beat down 40 hours a week but was to afraid to change anything. I’m 32 years old, I have almost 7 years invested in the company, it made sense to stay. It also made sense to leave. What would I have thought of myself 20 years from now if I didn’t try something new?
Life is just to short to wait. As I said my goodbyes to co-workers, more than half told me they wish they could do the same but felt it was to late for them. But that’s not true, every day is another chance to change your life. And fear doesn’t exist anywhere other than in your head. Be brave and go after your goals. I have a desire to work in a leadership role. To coach and mentor people. It was never going to happen for me where I was and it was weird to realize. But one day I kind of ‘woke up’ and just knew that a change was necessary and the time is now.
Im nervous and excited to start a new journey in my career. And I am going to miss the good people I met along the way. But I am also ready to make my goals my priority and take a step forward. It’s going to be hard work, I have a lot to learn, but personal growth in all walks of life is a slow and steady process.
Go out and get what you want today. Make an impact. Let me know how you do.