The Complexity of Quitting My Job
I left a 6 figure salary job that had great benefits.
I didn’t have another lined up either. It was the most scary thing I think I have ever done when it comes to my financial security and family’s livelihood. Yet here I was doing exactly that after having a series of panic attacks and months of stress, long hours and burnout from my current job. I felt like a loser and my current manager all but said that in one of his scream calls to me recently. The stress of it all cumulated to this very moment where I couldn’t even emotionally detach anymore just for the sake of the paycheck.
I was done.
I never wanted to go back and don’t think I have an ounce of strength to take another day of it. I have tried, really tried to make it all work. The hours were long, the demands relentless and along the way I stopped all the things I needed for my own well-being and that of my family’s to do my job. Work became number one and in response I was being screamed at by an abusive manager who didn’t have my back where it mattered. I couldn’t give anymore because the tank was empty. It was over.
Even when you have a little savings setup for emergencies it is scary as hell to quit your job. My husband having watched me sink farther and farther into the pit of burnout and depression drove me to the doctor’s office on a rainy Wednesday in May. We would figure this out he told me. He has my back on this he said. Was it better to quit or be dead my doctor said? While they were of course right, my health was a mess, my mental state in anguish it didn’t make it easier to quit. For one, I wasn’t a quitter. I was someone who always made it work, figured it out, survived. I had survived so much in my life that I couldn’t fathom not being able to overcome this situation at work. I swung at it harder and harder until I was a pile of stress, depression and panic attacks that felt like my heart was clutching and I couldn’t breathe. While I was going down swinging in true warrior fighting mode I was losing myself in the process this time and those that loved me said it was time to walk.
While I did start applying for other jobs, I quickly realized my spirit wasn’t into it. I spent a large amount of time sending my resume to recruiters, filling out hundreds of application systems with required fields to complete. The common thread was verifying on these forms if I had a mental illness, what gender I was and what my salary requirements were. I understand there are required pieces of information a company needs to collect but asking me my gender, race, mental state at the point you submit a resume has always struck me strangely. Do you think I want to disclose my all my details on some computer form just based on some vague job description? As far as my mental state, I was burned out and tired of working for companies who just cared about required fields on their application forms than of finding the right person for the job that aligned with the values.
Talking to recruiters, Human Resources people, hiring managers and more it was exhausting. I think I sent out over 300 resumes in a matter of a couple weeks and had a series of interviews filling my days almost every day. There were certainly jobs that were more interesting than others but none of them really sparked that fire for me. It all just felt like a continuation of what I had been experiencing to this point where it was just another job. Maybe this one would last more than a couple years, maybe not. Maybe I w