MY JOURNEY OUT OF THE TRADITIONAL 9 TIL 5 WORK WORLD, AND WHY I HAD TO BATTLE MY EGO TO GET THERE

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Last week I shared with you why I think getting a new day job (aka ditching the one you hate!), while you continue to grow your business on the side, could be the best next step for many biz babes out there. You can catch up on that post here.

 

The response to this article prompted lots of nods, but even though it was something y’all related to, it was also met with the good old ‘yeah but’s’ …

“Yeah but, even though hate it, I’m so comfortable in my job. I know the work like the back of my hand. Starting a new job would be tiring”.

“Yeah but, I don’t have any other skills. How on earth would I even get a job in a different field?”

“Yeah but, I’m scared to no longer be able to call myself a ‘insert profession here’. I worked hard to get that title”.

“Yeah but, I have a mortgage to pay”.

“Yeah but, I’m scared. Even though I want out, doing that is all I’ve ever known”.

 

And while these are all valid ‘yeah but’s’, I ask you this my love …

HOW DO YOU WANT TO LIVE YOUR LIFE?

 

Unhappy in a job you hate?

Dreading Mondays?

Staying ‘stuck’ out of fear?

Being controlled by your ego?

Living life from your head, rather than from your heart?

Sacrificing your happiness now, for happiness you perceive you’ll have in the future when ‘x, y and x’ is different?

 

Nuh-uh, that’s not how we live our lives around here girlfriend (*finger snaps*).

 

If you’re here, it’s likely that you’re a woman in heart centered business. You value authentic living. Truth and alignment. You advocate for self love and self care. You advocate for women stepping outside their comfort zones so that they can build the life of their dreams. My bet is that you not only value these things, but teach and preach them to them to the women you work with.

 

So why won’t you do this for yourself?

 

Let me tell you a bit about my journey and my battle with practicing what I preach and living an authentic life. Perhaps my tale of leaving the traditional world of 9 til 5 will inspire you to do the same …

 

I studied Social Work at University and then went on to be a Social Worker for 9 or so odd years. While I didn’t love the work, I loved the title. I thought that being a Social Worker implied that I was intelligent because I had a University degree. That I had a kind and compassionate heart. That I sacrificed earning the big bucks just so I could help people. I saw Social Work as being a meaningful profession. One that felt respectable and admirable.

So when I decided that I didn’t want to be a Social Worker anymore, because I no longer loved it, I struggled. Because I’d built so much of my identity, and my self worth, around this title.  My ego really liked the fact that I was a Social Worker.

Despite this though, I felt like I had no choice but to leave the world of Social Work behind – because I began to dread going to work each day. Because I would look at ads for other Social Work jobs and cry. Because I got a really yucky feeling in the pit of my stomach whenever I contemplated a lifelong career as a Social Worker.

So, long story short, I began to transition away from Social Work, all the while maintaining this space – my baby – on the side. My goal was self employment and I was 100% focussed on working for myself full time.

 

I reduced my Social Work hours to five a week.

I became a Nanny to three sweet girls.

I started Virtual Assistant work, serving heart centered women in business.

I began working as a Business and Lifestyle Mentor, and running events.

 

These days, for 20 hours a week, I worked for other people. The rest of the time I worked in my business. And do you know what? Leaving the traditional 9 til 5 work world gifted a huge realisation …. I actually didn't aspire to work for myself in my own business full time. Yes, ‘doing my thang’ on the side and freelancing out to other babes will always be huge part of who I am, but full time just ain’t my jam.

 

For many years I was convinced that I wanted to work for myself full time. I created a great deal of distress for myself because I was of the opinion that once I had attained this goal, I would be happy. And as the months and years passed without this goal coming to fruition, I grew steadily more distressed and frustrated.

What leaving the traditional world of 9 til 5 taught me was that it doesn’t have to be one or the other. We don’t have to either work for someone else full time in a job we hate or work for ourselves in our own businesses.

There is a beautiful space to found in between these two goals.

 

Let me tell you, I love what I do now (which is 95% Virtual Assistant, Copywriting and Business Coaching)– I’m gifted geographical freedom, I make my own hours, work from home (or a cafe or the library) and I can take holidays whenever I want. I love the diversity. It really does suit me to a tee. BUT it hasn’t been an easy journey …

 

Because my social conditioning told me that the jobs I do now aren’t as prestigious as Social Work and the piece of paper it gifted me.

Because I found it hard to move away from the financial security of a traditional 9 til 5 job.

Because I no longer get paid for holidays. Nor does my superannuation automatically get topped up.

Because I was convinced that my ‘perfect life’ would look different, so for a long time I failed to see the beauty that I had created for myself.

 

What I want you to take away from this tale is this:

You don’t have to stay in a day job you hate while you build up your business (for goodness’ sake, please don’t!) Perhaps your next step is different to what you thought it might be – perhaps your next step is to go into an alternative full time job in an industry and for a company that better aligns with you; perhaps it’s about stepping down to part time hours so that you have more space, time and energy to invest in your business (we really can live off less money than we think!); perhaps it’s about rewriting your old stories and do what I did – embrace a freelance lifestyle that gifts you diversity, regular income and alignment.

 

I truly believe that there are no excuses for staying in a job we hate. No, a change won’t occur overnight but I will happen – if you declare it to the Universe and put in the hard work that’s needed to create a life you love. 

Again I ask you, how do you want to live your life honey?