You know the feeling of being stuck in a tight box of your own creation. Your energy and happiness hanging on a shoestring. The passion that once oozed out of you when you first signed your employment contract, disappearing like smoke in wind. You feel underutilized and terrified (as you should) as you watch the vision for your life slowly ebb away.

But you stay and hold on to your lifeboat; your job. After all, it pays for the bacon, the milk, and life’s little things. It also pays for the big stuff, the kind that really matters – a roof over your head, education, and clothing. Because no one wants to be walking naked! So you sit tight and hold on to your job. And yet, you can’t seem to shake off that itch that needs to be scratched. That itch that tells you to quit your job.

Sounds familiar?

Quitting your job is like driving on an open road; you can drive as far as you want and allow the wind of possibility to kiss your face. It’s great fun. Also, you can play around with the gears and steer your life in any direction you please. You are the steering wheel of your life. You are the boss. You get to live on your own terms. To reinvent yourself. To scale new heights.

How do I know this? Well, one year ago, I hung up my boots and quit my flying job. It had been pretty a good run, but time was up. Was it exciting? No doubt. Scary? Absolutely! As I endeavor to start a life from scratch on an entirely new continent, I am still trying to assemble all the pieces. As for life on the other side, here’s what I can tell you.

You can totally survive on little cash.
No. Seriously, you can. You see, the hamster wheel of the modern day is always evolving, always tempting you to cash in on the latest trends. It is an ever-evolving wheel constantly enslaving us to an addiction of more. Before long, you end up with more stuff that actually need. Way too much. And in the wave of this addiction, you lose sight of what is most important to make your existence a fulfilling one. Because really, isn’t a fulfilling life the end goal?

My experience of scaling back to the essentials has given me immense satisfaction. But that’s not all, there’s so much more to be gained when you determine what is essential to you. It helps you make better use of your money.
And isn’t that a building block to wealth creation?

Spread the safety net before the jump.
Unless you are a ninja, standing at the edge of a cliff can feel pretty scary and the uncertainty is guaranteed to make your knees wobbly. This is precisely why you need to save for the jump by creating a financial cushion before you quit your job. In fact, it can buy you peace of mind.

Your ideal savings should cover expenses for six months to a year. It is paramount to do your due diligence and arm yourself with the necessary knowledge. This way you are guaranteed to have less sleepless nights. Begin by tracking your spending. Cut out the fluff.

Believe in yourself and the skills that you have.
The way I see it, there are only two main reasons to quit your job:

  1. You have an itch that needs to be scratched. That whispers in your ear and tells you that you are more, you can have more and you can be more.

2. Your occupation stretches you like a rubber band and the weight of your job demands collapse on you.

Whatever your reasons are (feel free to add), there is an undeniable fact: you always leave with more – more skills, more knowledge, and more exposure. But what’s even better, these same aspects become the foundation that you can use to propel yourself into the future.

Quitting your job means losing your structure.
When I quit my job, I suddenly found myself with no real structure. It’s like it had been pulled from under my feet and that threw me off a little bit. And I know what you are thinking, ‘isn’t that what you wanted, grasshopper?’ and yes, you are right. But truth be told, humans desire structure, need it even. Which is funny, because we only seem to stick to it for about a week! Or perhaps 10 days if we walk the discipline tightrope. However, not long after, we almost always revert back to our lost selves, like a tortoise returning to its shell.

Fortunately, there is hope. We can learn, (or steal) from real-life examples of those who seem to be nailing it in the areas of productivity. It makes it so easy when we have someone to emulate.

Remind yourself why you quit in the first place
Quitting your job is like chasing after a shiny object. It lures you in and you drop everything to reach for it. But when you finally have it in your hands, you realize that the shiny object needs a bit of work. You realize that it is covered with dross and is in urgent need of a great deal of polishing.

When you put on your big girl shoes and get to work, you need to keep yourself motivated. There is no better way to do it than to remind yourself why you quit your job in the first place. Your reason/goal is the leash that keeps you tethered. Consider using vision boards and motivational stickers. These not only sharpen your focus but are the fuel that keeps you going forward.

This quote from Thomas Carlyle, is a true reminder why your gaze must be fixated on the goal, especially those that you gave up your job for.

A man without a goal is like a ship without a rudder.’ Thomas Carlyle