I shared this story on social media recently (in a much more condensed version) and while it’s a bit vulnerable, my hope is that it can help someone else in some small way.
Four months ago I made the difficult decision to leave a job that was simply the wrong fit. A job we had moved 1000 miles for. A job I was SO excited for. We had packed up everything, said goodbye to friends & former co-workers (who were more like family) in Richmond, VA to move to Miami.
I was only a few weeks into the new job when I realized pretty quickly it was not the place for me. I tried so hard to chalk it up to being the “new kid on the block.” That these were just growing pains. And if I could just get through a few more weeks, it would get better. But I knew deep down that it shouldn’t feel this bad, this early on. What followed were weeks of tears, sleepless nights, Sunday evenings that felt completely hopeless because I had to go back to that place on Monday and do it all.over.again. I even ended up in the ER at one point because of a severe migraine. It was toxic and tumultuous.
As someone who has made my career my number one priority for so long, I felt like I had failed… made a horrible mistake. Truth is, I was in a dark, depressed place… not myself at all. How could I have possibly made such a “wrong decision?”
But it wasn’t wrong. I had asked all the right questions in the interview. On paper things seemed great. Everyone was happy with my work performance, I had a great initial review. But the reality is, sometimes things just don’t work out because it isn’t the right fit. Be it a job, a relationship, a move, a house….. And that’s 100% ok.
It was messy and definitely uncomfortable… But I am so proud of myself for having the courage to walk away when I knew in my core it was not the right place for me.
If you can remove yourself from a toxic or unhealthy situation with your head held high, knowing you gave it your all, knowing you tried your best… dammit, walk away.
Nothing is worth your mental health, state-of-mind and happiness. No paycheck, no relationship, nothing.
Luckily, I had the support of an amazing partner. Howard is the most patient person I have ever met. He listened, offered advice when I needed it, was a shoulder to cry on night after night, and never blamed me for dragging us to Miami. Never made me feel bad. And never once told me to suck it up. He encouraged me to follow my dream of starting my own consulting business and assured me over and over again that no matter what, we would be ok.
When I finally said enough is enough (and after having googled how to quit your job after 3 months about 100 times), I had already signed my first client. Someone I had worked with in the past, who believed in me and trusted me. It was the additional push I needed and I will forever be grateful for that opportunity. Months later… I have signed more clients, work is great. And I have not dreaded a Monday, or cried, or been deeply depressed since. Some days are hard, sure. Working remotely for yourself has its own set of challenges. But ya know what, it’s work that I believe in for clients who I am 100% proud to represent and work with.
If you’re still reading at this point (Congratulations…and seriously, thank you!) the point is had I not accepted that job, and had we not moved to Miami and had I not left that job a few months in… we wouldn’t be living the life we are now. It truly was the catalyst for a happier, healthier, better-for-us lifestyle.
I am not suggesting that you just up and quit your job if you have a bad day. We all have had those plenty in our careers, I’m sure. But, if you feel you have failed or made a bad decision, just remember that something truly awesome can come out of it. And you aren’t alone. Don’t beat yourself up. Don’t be afraid to take the leap towards something that can better your life. And PLEASE don’t, don’t, don’t stay in a dark place.
Learn what you can from it and work towards figuring out what it is that will improve your situation and go for it! You’ll be glad you did.