Quitting My Job: How I Took The Jump

Dan Gough
5 min readDec 19, 2015

For most people, when they quit their job, it’s because they hate their job or their boss or both. I didn’t hate my job, or my boss, or my colleagues or any of it really. I loved it all. So, when I finally made the decision to quit, I knew it was for the right reasons.

This is the story of how I took the jump.

I have such a comfortable life. I live in a lovely house, I have a good wage, I eat out at least half of the week and I can afford luxuries without thinking too much about it. For me, this security was always so comforting — but over the last 6 months, I’ve started to see less and less comfort in being so comfortable.

Quitting my job at 3 SIDED CUBE (an incredible digital agency) was one of the most terrifying decisions I’ve made. After all, it was my first job after college (when I was 18) and I’d been there for over 4 years. When I joined, there were only 5 of us, and as I was looking to leave, we’d grown to a considerably larger 28. I’d been there through its succcess, its changes and its growth. It was like a family, and it was a massive part of my life. So, why did I decide to leave?

The amazing team I’m leaving


Freedom isn’t something you can truly have in most jobs in our day and age. I had reached a point where I realised the times I enjoyed work the most, was when I was on the go in new places, with new people. Sure, those times were normally the most stressful, but they were also the most exciting.

Me in Bali last year, the last time I felt truly had freedom.

Whenever I returned to Bournemouth, I’d rue the way my life had become groundhog day; and no matter how I tried to change my routine, it never solved the real problem. I wanted real change.

Freedom to me, is the ability to be where I want, when I want and work when I want to. Freedom is being happy and having the power to change something if it makes you unhappy.

I wanted that freedom.


If lack of change was the problem, then surely there were a bunch of options. I looked at countless options: different jobs, different agencies, different locations. The more I looked, I realised I didn’t want a different job, I didn’t want another agency. I wasn’t prepared to step into another job and know that months down the line, I’d still have the itch for real, tangible change that threw me into the deep end.

Me in the metaphorical deep

Digital Nomads

As I trawled the internet for answers, I came across the term “digital nomads”. If I’m honest, I thought it was a really embarrassing buzz term — but from an ideological point of view, it sounded perfect.

A digital nomad is someone who uses their digital skills to their advantage, and travels while they work. Luckily, I’ve got digital skills that are transferrable wherever I am in the world, so why would I not take the opportunity to try it?

The thought of picking up and working wherever I wanted sounded incredibly appealing — but naturally, I had massive reservations. What is the practicality of it? What could go wrong?

I knew there were risks, but a fire inside of my belly started to burn, and I woke up everyday with excitement about the possibility.

Unclouded Judgement

I devoured articles and websites about the nomad lifestyle, and started to weigh up what was important to me.

It always came back to the same thing: I would regret it if I didn’t take the jump. I’ve always said that I wouldn’t live a life of “what if’s?” and this was the opportunity to truly live up to that.

For me, it was important that I made my decision without any input at all. That meant that I cut out everyone from the decision — I didn’t speak to my long-term boyfriend, I didn’t speak to my Mum, or my friends or my collegues — it was just me, myself and I.

It was important that I made my decision without any input at all. My boyfriend would have egged me on, my Mum would have thought I was crazy.

I knew that if I asked other people, they would have strong opinions on it; after all, quitting your job and going around the world isn’t really conventional. My boyfriend would have egged me into going more (he loves to travel), my Mum would have thought I was crazy. It was a decision I had to make on my own.

After months of deliberating, I made a final decision.

Taking the Jump

I walked in after a long walk on my own and said to my boyfriend, “I’ve made a decision. I’m quitting my job, and I’m going to travel and work” He nearly fell off of the bed, and asked me when I was telling work.

Messaging my boss and asking for a chat about the future was nerve wracking. I felt sick, I felt nervous but I knew I had to do it. So I did.

I want you to know, there is never a right time to do it.

If you’re deciding to do something like this, I want you to know, there is never a right time to do it. You can always wait a little longer, save a little more or hope for the perfect opportunity. Let me tell you, it won’t come. You have to truly take the jump.

There’s never a right time to look out & decide to make a change

Taking a risk

I’ll be leaving in five months time, starting in Malaysia! I wanted to give my work enough time to find a replacement for me, and I wanted to give myself enough time to get prepared. I’ve got a bunch of stuff to do: sell my existing things, buy things that are essential to travel and line up work.

I could not be more excited to see what happens. It has been so long since I have been completely out of my comfort zome. It is the first time in my life that I have no plan — and whether I fly or fail, I cannot wait to begin this journey.

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Originally posted on my blog www.takingthejump.com



Dan Gough

Creative specialising in user-led design, apps and rapid prototyping.