Why I quit New York City after 3 weeks

Tom Cotterill
Nov 11, 2018 · 3 min read

In June, I was fortunate enough to move to New York City.

Big salary.

Potentially enormous commission structures.

My chance to mix it with the real big boys.

I always dreamt about moving to the Big Apple.

“My career can really go to the next level now!” I thought to myself.

I remember getting my visa back “Welcome to the USA” the attorney.

I get goosebumps thinking about it, I was really moving there!

As you know by the title of this post, it didn’t quite work out. I left England for the wrong reason as a result of a flared ego.

I lost myself throughout 2018, I’d been doing very well in most areas of my life until May when I started to get bored. I was making more money than I ever earned in my life, I was travelling to a new country every 2 weeks, everything at work was starting to flow nicely, I’d been promoted twice in 6 months.

So… I got bored. As us millennials do.

I wanted more, More and MORE.

It wasn’t until I was alone in a hotel room every night after the initial buzz of moving to NYC had disappeared, I was lonely and lost, my online persona was different to my real one, I was living a lie, the self-induced pressure was on to deliver sales and fast, my ego was so flared I lost my true self in the process.

It was Thursday 9th August walking down Broadway in rush-hour watching everyone run for the subway, leave the office and get home for evening.

F*** this I thought, there has to be more to life? It was back in my hotel room I had a belt to my neck.

I wanted out.

But I had a realisation which I don’t think I’d have had if I was still in my comfort zone.

I was living a life so unaligned to my true self.

Material possessions, money, status, travel doesn’t mean anything if you have a deep underlying unfulfillment.

I now realised I had to take a step back from my career for a period of time, focus on re-charging my batteries and work harder on myself than I ever had.

I left New York City on 13th August to recharge in Australia and Indonesia.

I ended up meditating with monks. It worked.

Taking a new job in a new country should be a huge exciting step, my advice to anyone would be don’t take a job based on ego. What do YOU REALLY want?

We as a society need to re-define what success truly is.

Success for me is not moving to NYC on big salaries and making decisions based on ego, to please other people. I’ve learnt you can’t give your best in your career, family, relationships and spiritual life until you start living a life based on your true core values. The quickest way to depression is to live a life unaligned to your true-self.

Success for me now is actually quite simple, live and work towards a life which is aligned to my values, principles and beliefs. I don’t chase money, I chase the value output I can bring to someone’s life. Money is a by-product of the value and lives you can change.

I’m going to be writing more on this subject, but as a first Medium post this is the foundation I hope to help people achieve more fulfillment.

Don’t look back, only look to the future.

Tom Cotterill

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I write on the intersection between personal and professional development. I believe your work should be a vehicle for growth. I fear a life without purpose.