Millennial Life — When to Quit Your Job
If you’re looking in here for someone to talk you down from the ledge, then this is not a read for you, and I am not author for you. The way I see it, there are two types of people in this world; those who quit their jobs and those who do not. Okay, okay…I’m sure a few other types of people exist but we can forget about them for now. The real question is why do people quit? Some people quit because they have a better job lined up. Others quit because they want to travel the world or take time away from the rat race to relax on a beach (I’m looking at you Wall Streeters!). And still others…well, others have just had enough!
What Type of Person am I?
Personally, I’m a Millennial. Like most Millennials, I long for something fulfilling. Something that I am truly passionate about. A workplace where I can see the value I’m adding and have an impact on the company. So far, for me, that’s been a tough sell. It’s not that I dislike work, it’s just that I now adhere to the famous Steve Jobs philosophy:
“I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” — 2005 Stanford commencement speech
Now of course, not everyone is Steve Jobs. In fact, maybe no one else is, so don’t go thinking some idiot blogger told me to quit my job because I’m going to start the next Apple and be rich. I hope you do, and if you do, I expect some skrilla thrown my way! But getting rich isn’t the most important thing (although you never hear rich people say they want less money).
What is important is the first step. You must determine the type of person you are. Are you the type of person looking for a new adventure or the person who found a better job? If you’re still reading this, then you’re probably the third type of person saying “Fuck, I’m 30. This job isn’t for me, but I don’t know what else to do.”
So what do I do?
Well first, let’s look at the facts:
You aren’t alone. 66 percent of Millennials say they expect to leave their current job by 2020. Think about that. That means 2/3 of all the employed Millennials will no longer be at their current job in 3 years. So if you leave now you’re really just an early investor of an inevitable truth for yourself. And…early investors of Facebook, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Twitter, and LinkedIn all seem pretty filthy rich, I mean happy, right now. So the truth is, you’re just investing in yourself by leaving a job you no longer enjoy.
There is a general malaise that comes from thinking about quitting. You know the outcome you want you just can’t quite overcome the fear of ‘What next?’. But this is a normal fear, and we all know “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself” — FDR. The unknown is always going to be a place filled with anxiety, questions, and doubts. But it’s also what propels us forward to the new dawn.
Facebook and Instagram have filled our heads with a yearning to be exciting and spontaneous (unless like me you’re from the Midwest and your Facebook wall has been filled with friends’ baby pictures since after college). We dread mundanity and want nothing more than to explore the world with our closest friends. Of course you’ll have the naysayers. The ones who tell you to ‘stick it out’ or ‘it’s just a phase’. But this is your life not theirs, and you’re over it. You’ve had enough of the early meetings and the late nights! You’re through with all the emails and crazy customers!
You’re over the shitty raises and the extra work! You’re tired of training all the new hires and copy and pasting in to excel! God dammit, you’re a Millennial and you don’t need this!…And then you realize, the only real harm would be to do nothing. To continue down this path which you can’t stand. To endure one more day of this insufferable job. To wake up feeling miserable and going to bed dreading the coming day…And thus, just like that, you quit. After all, in 3 years’ time, you’ll probably have a different job anyway.