The other day, someone on Twitter sent me this hilarious article from The Onion called “Find The Thing You’re Most Passionate About, Then Do It On Nights And Weekends For The Rest Of Your Life”. You can read it here: http://www.theonion.com/articles/find-the-thing-youre-most-passionate-about-then-do,31742/
Of course, the truth is that this article is so funny because it’s so dead on. This got me thinking…if you are working on your business on the side of your full-time (or even part-time) job and it’s what you absolutely want to be doing with your life, why haven’t you quit yet?
Seriously. If you know exactly what you want to do and you’re already doing it, what’s holding you back? What’s preventing you from walking into your boss’s office right now and saying “Adios!”? Why are you sitting at a desk in an office with no windows putting up with people you merely “tolerate” for one more day? When you get right down to it, it’s almost silly that you would spend another minute of your life working to make someone else rich and support their vision while yours is sitting quietly on the sidelines waiting to become the star player.
Of course, we have to be realistic here. There are certain logistical reasons why this very moment might not be the prime time to quit your job if you want your business to succeed. For example, if you’re planning to open a retail store, it might not make sense to quit your job until you find an appropriate store location.
For the rest of us, though, I’ve put together 3 primary reasons that you have not walked into your boss’s office today to hand in your resignation.
1st Reason You Didn’t Quit Your Job Today: FEAR
I’m not going to sugarcoat it; it can be terrifying to go out on your own. Being your own boss is not for the faint of heart. Unless you are superhuman, anyone who’s considered quitting their job to follow their passion (or already quit their job) has stood at the foothill of a mountain of fear.
Fear comes in the form of self-doubts: What if my idea really isn’t that good? What if my business can’t make enough money? What if I’m not successful? What if I don’t deserve to live this life?
Fear comes in the form of uncertainty: What if my family won’t support me? What if I have to go back and get another job? What if I can’t pay the bills? What if I have to move back in with my parents?
Fear can be a huge roadblock in between you and your dreams because fear doesn’t assume that the best will happen, it assumes the worst. So if you didn’t quit your job today to follow your true passion in life, fear probably played a big role in that.
I’m going to tell you a secret, though. Fear is a good thing. Fear is not an enemy to be rivaled with, it’s your companion in this journey. It’s what keeps you on your toes, moving forward and constantly striving to do better. The sooner you embrace it, the sooner you will be able to walk out the door of your job and never look back.
2nd Reason You Didn’t Quit Your Job Today: MONEY
One of the biggest fears that will crop up for you is the fear of not having/making enough money. This fear is so big that it has its section. The truth is, it’s scary to not get a safe, comfortable paycheck every two weeks. S-C-A-R-Y. I always tell people that my life is like “living paycheck to paycheck when there are no paychecks.” In other words, I never know where my next client or stream of income is coming from, but most of the time, I’m waiting for it in order to pay all the bills that are piling up. Since the day I quit my corporate job in 2007, I’ve never once known exactly when and where the money is coming from. (Did I mention that this kind of life is not for the faint of heart?)
If you did not quit your job today, it’s likely that money has something to do with it. Maybe you feel like you don’t have enough money saved up in the bank to quit. Or maybe you feel like your side business isn’t making enough money for you to work for yourself full-time. Or perhaps you have to support your family and have to make a certain amount of money no matter what to keep them afloat.
Money is a serious consideration and definitely not something to take lightly. Keep in mind when you’re thinking about quitting that there is a difference between throwing caution to the wind and taking a calculated risk. You want to have enough money saved up so that you can survive while you grow your business. On the other hand, you don’t want to have too much money saved up when you quit because this will make you too comfortable and will end up actually hurting your success. You want to have just enough money saved up (about 6 months to 1 year’s worth) to create a steady fire burning underneath you that’s going to get you moving fast towards your goal.
3rd Reason You Didn’t Quit Your Job Today: OPINIONS OF OTHERS
A times, we all like to believe that it doesn’t matter what other people think about us. We’re going to do what we’re going to do and they can choose to accept us or not. We’re going to quit our job and become a full-time [insert your passion here] because that’s what we’re meant to do and it’s doesn’t matter what anyone thinks.
This is good in theory, but it goes against our primal instinct to be accepted by our tribe. As much as you want to be a unique, independent individual, I’m guessing you also deep down want to be accepted and understood by those around you. Many times, when you want to quit your full-time job with its steady paycheck and great benefits to work for yourself (making no money without any benefits), this can be difficult for those around you to understand.
For example, if you are a lawyer and your father was a lawyer and his father was a lawyer and you want to quit your job to be a photographer, that might be a stretch for your family. For me, I was originally an engineer like my father and I’ll admit it was slightly confusing to my parents when I didn’t want to follow in his footsteps anymore. On some level (even in my thirties), I still have some ingrained desire to make my parents proud of me. Most likely, you have some form of this desire as well.
If you didn’t quit your job today, the opinions of other might be stalling your momentum. If they are, keep in mind that most people around you honestly just want the best for you. They are stuck in their own personal fears and doubts and projecting them onto you thinking that they are keeping you safe by sharing their opinion.
In the end, other people’s opinions don’t matter. You know in your heart what you’re meant to do and why you’re doing it. That’s all you need. You probably already have enough fears and doubts to not let theirs stand in your way.