I’m saying goodbye to the corporate life. Maybe it will turn out to be a mistake. Maybe not. I really hope not, anyway. No matter what, though, I believe my work life quality is about to change significantly for the better.
I quit my job – a very nice, corporate job at a well-recognized and ages old organization with benefits and a corner office.
Some will think me crazy for doing so and the intent of this post is not to ask whether or not I should have done so. It’s to explain why I did so.
I’ve played the game. I’ve crawled my way through corporate politics. I’ve sandwiched my share of constructive criticism in between bits of positive reinforcement. I’ve been the mouse whose cheese was moved and I’ve moved my share of cheese. I know how to manage in a minute, remotely, and in the middle of the night. I know being in the red is bad. I’ve worked with empire-builders, lazy suck-ups and those who did all the work but never got enough credit. I’ve been through more corporate fire-drills than a volunteer fireman.
I’ve missed birthdays and dinners and family vacations. I’ve missed parent-teacher meetings, recitals, and concerts. Most of the best meals of my life have been spent with strangers.
I’ve missed the first steps of two children and I think it’s probably a little less common to hear those words coming from a woman than it is a man.
I’ve worked hard to prove to myself that I could, to earn the respect of those important to me, and to be able to provide for my family.
At times, there was absolutely no work-life balance. It was all work, even if I was home watching TV with the family.
Frankly, I can’t do it anymore. I admire those who can plod on day in and day out, showing up at the designated time each day, staying engaged in meetings that seem to never end, seemingly unaware that they are going through the same projects each year with only a slightly different spin each time.
I did not, however, quit without a plan. I’ve been working online for a year to build a new income stream. I have a business plan for how to grow that stream and I have enough reserves to allow my family to keep living nearly the same lifestyle for an extended period of time.
Is it risky? Absolutely. Many job changes carry a degree of risk and certainly going into business for yourself has some added risk. But I have a family who supports me, a tenacity for making things work, and confidence in myself. (Let’s hope it’s not misplaced!)
Best of all – I’ll be home. Working on MY business on MY schedule. Available for my two oldest children in these last few years before they become adults. Free to revel in the childish delights of my six year old. I can’t think of a better work life environment than that.
Goodbye corporate life. I appreciate what I learned but I don’t think I’ll miss you one bit.