There. I said it.
I regret leaving my full-time job.
Now don’t get me wrong…
I don’t regret jumping into creative entrepreneurship — at all! I don’t regret leaving the position I was in. I don’t regret leaving the time clock. I don’t regret leaving the limited sick days. Seriously, who should be telling me, a chronic illness warrior, that I am only allowed to be sick three days per year?
Here’s the scoop: I regret leaving my full-time job when I left my full-time job.
Why? I left my full-time job when I was smack dab in the middle of a personal crisis. I made the decision to jump out of my full-time job and into entrepreneurship the day I returned to work after bereavement leave. Bereavement leave from when my dad died suddenly and left me parentless. I told myself “life is short and I need to get the heck out of here.” So I did.
Hindsight is 20/20. Said everyone, ever.
My dad passed away on November 1st and I made it my mission to be self-employed on the following April 1st. March 27th, 2015 was my last day of employment in my last position.
You guys, this is a big freaking deal! Right?! So why on earth do I hold such a significant regret two and a half years later?
I regret leaving my full-time job (and not getting a new job to replace it for a while) because more than ever, I needed simple tasks and structure to keep me going while I mourned and healed. I think, at times, my decision to jump head first into the wild world of entrepreneurship distracted me from the grieving process. I think I was trying to do anything but accept that my parents were gone forever.
Here I am, several years in and I can finally type these words out. Of course I miss my parents and have a giant void in my life where they once were, but I feel calm inside. I feel a strange sense of comfort in my heart, accepting the permanence of death and uncertainty of illness. Now would have been a good time to start my own business.
There is no perfect time to leave your 9-5 and jump into self-employment. Truly.
You will always say you need more time, money, education, etc. to get started. But none of that matters. Here’s what you really need:
A passionate fire burning so hot inside of you that it drives you to consistent action
A willingness and excitement to learn quickly and often
A support network, including one heck of an awesome coach who has your best interest at heart (hello, that’s me )
I would never tell anyone to leave their full-time job until they are ready, but my responsibility is to let you know it is entirely possible.