I said I would.
And it’s important to me to do what I say I’m going to do. I hate when people say they are going to do something and don’t (just don’t say it then, and definitely don’t say it and then follow it with a lengthy list of excuses).
My plan for a while has been to put in enough time at the day job to get vested and qualify for a pension. Stacking as much dough as I could until that time, so I could quit the job and have enough money to live on for approximately a year with zero income. (Ideally, I won’t have zero income in 2019, but just in case, I still won’t be homeless or starving.)
I ran out of excuses.
I said I would quit after I got vested and saved a certain amount of money. Then I said I would quit after a big international trip. I needed to get some work done on my car, sell another car, figure out how to start paying for my own cell phone and internet service (which work has been paying for)… But come to the end of the year, I had done everything I said I was going to do before I quit. I even completed some outstanding projects. I was literally out of excuses.
Opportunity for growth.
After 7 years in the same position, I’m not learning much new at work. Sure, there’s always a takeaway and room for improvement, but in many ways, I have mastered my role and am repeating many of the same annual events/projects from year-to-year. While this is comfortable because I’m good at it and I know what to expect/anticipate, it also presents limited opportunities for growth and personal development. And I want to continue to be a better version of myself.
Challenging myself to lean into the fear.
Just after the new year, I tried a backflip (with a spotter) for the first time in years. I was pressured to do it, and I about had a nervous breakdown in the process (because backflips, in particular, scare the bejesus out of me), but I also felt rejuvenated — like I had conquered something huge. Physical progress was nominal, I’m still a long way from being able to do it on my own, but it gave me a massive adrenaline rush and sense of personal victory. As well as reinforcement that sometimes the things we fear the most are the exact things we need to pursue/tackle.
The potential for greatness.
Even though I’ve had a job since I was 15 years old and I’m terrified of not having a steady paycheck, the worst case scenario really isn’t that scary — which is I burn through all of my savings (excluding retirement accounts) and have to go back to work. And there is a possibility that may happen and that the year I’ve allocated isn’t enough time. But there is also the potential that the reward could dramatically outweigh the risk. That our fledgling little business could take off. That we could truly be building something great. Steve Harvey said every successful person has to jump. That sometimes the next step won’t happen unless you’re willing to take the risk.
A brighter future.
I’m not unhappy where I am in life and with what I’ve been doing, but I also didn’t want the upcoming year to be the same as last year (as the last few years have been). I know I’m capable of more and I want to do/achieve/be more. Which means doing things differently.
Need more time.
Or to be more accurate, I need more control over my time. Most people say they could use more time, but in my case between current family obligations and full-time employment, there’s not much left. I’m not just out of time — I’m out of energy and brain capacity. I need more space — more room to problem-solve and learn the things that can ultimately help expand my business/future.
So … I gave 6 weeks notice to my employer and off I march into the unknown of the future. It will definitely be different, but I think overall that’s a good thing — even if I go back to work in a year. I can say I gave it my all. I tried. I didn’t let fear or complacency stop me. And already that feels pretty darn good.