Tag Archives: resign

It’s a new day

freedom.jpgI resigned from my job yesterday. Yes, in this economy. Call me crazy. Actually, if I’d stayed you would have had to because that road was beckoning.

I don’t say this very often, but I’m proud of myself. I don’t do leaving well. I mean, I’m not in the habit of setting fire to things and sledgehammering the copier. But my usual plan, aka “what happens”, is this:

1. I realize the gig is not for me.
2. I blame myself.
3. The gig gets worse.
4. I get sick.
5. I tell myself it’s my problem to fix it.
6. I try to fix it. (The whole gig that is, not just my part of it – you know me: keep the goals reasonable and achievable.)
7. I yell a lot when I’m not at the gig.
8. I fail to fix it. (Note to self: yelling does not have a direct fixative affect.)
9. Someone sane reminds me that my preferences (not to go nutty, not to work for that particular Man) matter and that the whole gig is not my problem.
10. I try anyway.
11. I get sick again. More sick.
12. The gig is now completely unsustainable.
13. I stay a little longer anyway, just for kicks.
14. I quit.

It’s quite a plan: it’s got a little bit of everything and you can use it in any situation. I myself have used it on boyfriends as well and it’s just as effective. And by “effective”, of course, I mean “personally ruinous.”

It has one advantage: you never, ever leave thinking you could have done more to save the situation. Of course, you also leave feeling like you didn’t stand up for yourself or trust your instincts. And, naturally, the situation fell apart in the end anyway, so you could have saved yourself the trouble of banging your head against the wall for several months. But you did make damn sure you eliminated any risk that you’d blame yourself for not trying everything to save it (even if it wasn’t save-able or worth saving).

You’d think that trying every possible tactic to make it work would be a positive thing, even heroic, but it’s not. “Extremely painful” is not the same thing as “courageous”. Courage is trusting your instinct that something’s wrong for you and stepping away. If the boat is sinking fast, it’s not heroic to stick around saving hand luggage when there are lifeboats and people ready to help you onto them. Courage is prioritizing your well-being and instincts over making sure you have no regrets whatsoever.

Regrets are inevitable anyway. For me, it came down to risking a different set of regrets (“What if I’d stayed?”), rather than taking on the same set of regrets I’ve had every other time (“What if I’d stood up and moved on and looked after myself? What could I have done with the time I spent pounding my head on the wall? Could I have used those Band-Aids on my head for something else?”)

Having spent the last couple of months repeating Step 1 (and yeah, I’ll face facts: some combination of everything up to Step 7), yesterday I set about cutting out the remaining steps.

So there it is. Done deal. Free at last, free at last. It feels very appropriate to have done this the week after the inauguration. It’s a new time. Let’s be honest with ourselves, do the right thing, focus on what’s important. The rest will fall into place.