How many of you have thought about changing jobs or looking for a whole new career? I think that we all consider it when we are having a bad day, but how many people actually do it? I will share with you a bit about my story. I worked at the same company for 20+ years and had created a good reputation for getting things done, bringing teams together and as a leader who was a good people developer. I had thought about leaving many times for various reasons. But I never actually did anything about it. When my company was going through a merger, I had to make one of the most difficult decisions that I had ever made. Stay with the new company or leave.
So how did I decide? I went with my gut to make the decision. Every time someone approached me about staying with the new company, I literally felt like I was going to be sick. I knew that for me personally, the culture of the new organization was not going to work for me and I really felt like I would be taking a step backward in my career. I was scared to death, but I told my boss that I was ready to leave. I had a great boss who didn’t try to talk me into staying, he just said: “I know you are a smart woman and you are going to be okay.”
Leaving so many people that I had worked with for so long was difficult. The most difficult thing was writing a note to my team on our last day of work. I didn’t know exactly who would be staying or leaving on my team, but I knew that for some of them it would be their last day too. Because I had been there so long, no one ever expected me to leave. It was a shock to many of them and let’s just say some tears were shed that day.
I want you to know that for me this has been a huge change. It was strange the first day not going to work, not having three meetings at the same time, and conference calls all day. I felt kind of strange and didn’t know what to do with myself. I had been programmed for all those years to check my email all the time!! No one emailed me and I had no meetings to attend. But I started figuring out what my new life was going to look like. Did I want to go back to working in a corporate environment, work for a smaller company or start my own business? After being at the same company for so long, all of those choices scared me.
How about you? Do you dread getting up in the morning and going to the office? Do you dream about a different lifestyle where you are working a “normal” amount of hours and not staying late every night? Do you imagine yourself working for yourself or moving to another place?
“Is the pain great enough to make you change?” Think about the pain you are feeling and then think about what is possible if you made the change. Yes, it will be scary for you and you will have some big adjustments to make. You may feel like you don’t know enough to try something new or if you go somewhere else you will have to start all over. This is fear talking and it is trying to keep you safe. I know that change is difficult, but remember that you have most likely done it many times in your life already. How did you get through it then? You don’t know what you can do until you try.
You need to decide what would make you happy and you have only two choices. You can stick it out awhile longer and see if things get better. Or you think about what your life would look like if you made the change. How would you feel when you wake up in the morning? Would you look forward to getting up and doing something that made you happy? What if you were able to spend more time doing the things that you love and being with your family more? How would it feel to tell your friends and family about your new job?
Believe me, I know how hard it is to take a risk and leave the safety of your current company. As you can see, I chose to start my own business. I have met so many great people, continue to learn so much every single day and I know that for me this is the right decision. I have also seen many of my previous co-workers go through this change. They have all found roles that they are excelling at and they found out that they knew way more than they thought they did. If you decide to do this, you will be moving out of your comfort zone and that is okay. You are going to learn new things, gain a new perspective, meet new people and grow so much through this experience. You are going to accomplish things that you never thought were possible.
What is most important, though, is that you are going to be happy. I have met so many people who are unhappy with their jobs, their managers and where they work. Life is way too short for people to be unhappy. If there is any way that I can help you through this type of transition, please let me know. Just click on this link and we can have a discussion to see if coaching is the right step for you. http://susanmbarber.com/schedule-an-appointment/