Journal #2: I Quit My Job in a Fit of Rage and Blaze of Glory

journal 2 i quit my job life well hustled

Hello, hustlers. It’s been a minute since I’ve paid this blog any mind (for shame, Sylvia). The reason being that, five months ago, I started working full-time and using up all the brain power normally reserved for blogging. But, I have some good news:

I quit my job in a fit of rage! 

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And so should you! Or, wait. No. That’s terrible advice. Don’t actually do that. Not until you read through this blog post, anyway.

Even though it was incredibly a wee bit impulsive on my part, I did actually put more than thirty second’s consideration into it. Before I jump into the mechanics and nuance of walking away from a steady paycheck, allow me to explain why: 

  • I landed a temp role at a place where I’ve wanted to work for an incredibly long time. In fact, I mentioned in a previous post that I networked my little heart out to get my foot in the door. I worked the gig for 2.5 months, put my best foot forward, went above and beyond, put in crazy amounts of overtime…
  • Aaand ultimately got passed over for filling the role permanently with very flimsy reasoning as to why. They hired someone (younger, might I sulkily add) from the outside.
  • (Incidentally, since I was the only one doing the job, I was then saddled with the lovely task of training my replacement… while she got a full-time salary and I got my piddly temp-wages. Great!)
  • BUT, no bother! I’m resilient. Knock me down, I get back up bitter and ready to kill someone more determined – if a bit cooler toward my supervisors. I was reassigned to a new temp role within the same department and encouraged to apply for this role.
  • So, apply I did while temping in the new role for another 2.5 months, once again putting my best foot forward, once again going above and beyond, once again putting in crazy amounts of overtime…
  • (Do you see where this is going?)
  • Yes. Passed over. Again. For another outsider. This time for completely nonsensical reasoning – that they went with someone with X and Y experience, two areas which literally make up 90% of my work experience.

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Hm. It’s starting to sound personal, like I pissed off someone important along the way. My entire tenure, I’d only received glowing reviews and positive feedback from the directors, associate directors, and teammates. Even directors and associates from completely different departments sang my praises.

I’m a goddamn delight, I tell ya.

The directors who broke the news to me wanted me to stay on for a few more weeks for very transparent reasons (read: to train my replacement and to finish out Huge Project I’d been working on for, literally, the entire summer so that they wouldn’t have to). I told them I couldn’t answer them right then and there. This happened at the end of the work day, so I left.

And didn’t come back.

Yes, it felt as satisfying as you would think it did. Though, as I wrote above, it wasn’t without intense consideration and objectivity about the situation. I do think I made the right choice for me and my sanity, but if you ever find yourself in a similar way, you have my utmost sympathy; it’s unfair, it wrecks your self-esteem, and in the end, I’m rather unemployed.

Let’s delve into the nitty-gritty of it all:

I still kept it as professional as possible.

I would like to think that karma will reward me for resisting the following temptations. As it stands, I did NOT:

  1. Ghost them. That’s right. Even though I tried to document processes along the way so that I wasn’t the Sole Keeper of All Knowledge, I can’t say I was terribly interested in spoon-feeding the directors of the department things they should already know. After they told me they were passing me over again, a director sent me a Google invite for a meeting to ‘chat about logistics’. My choices were now: ghost them and let them scramble to figure shit out by themselves since I owed them nothing, or throw them a bone. I went with the latter, gave them the absolute bare minimum in terms of operational notes (through email. I declined the Google invite), and left it at that. For the next few days, I even forwarded any important emails that still were coming my way.
  2. Literally write out the words, ‘Go f**k yourselves’ in my resignation letter. I spent a few hours drafting my resignation email. My original draft was bold, to say the least (I threw around the phrase ‘I do expect’ a few times), and I was more than ready to hit ‘send’ as soon as I typed my name. Instead, rationality took hold, and I sat on it for a bit. I had two people whom I trust read it over, revised it ten times, and then hit ‘send’. The final draft was perfection. It was as faultlessly professional as possible, all the while being as chilly as you please (I signed off with ‘Regards,’ for the first time in my life).

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Remember, anything you put in writing has a half-life of, approximately, until the end of time. Be smart about the way in which you burn a bridge. Oh, speaking of which…

I was extremely aware of the fact that I was burning bridges.

Even though my assignment was technically over (that is, they wanted to extend my assignment beyond the original end date), and the powers that be shouldn’t fault me for rage-quitting… I can’t pretend that life works as we want or expect it to. I am cognizant of the fact that I, more than likely, torched my bridges to high heaven.

Meh. Whatever.

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In fact, I’ve made a deal with the universe that when (but hopefully ‘if’) the long-term ramifications of this debacle present themselves to me, I will not complain or whine about it in any way. I will own up to the decisions I’ve made and deal with the consequences head-on. I’m cautiously hopeful that I’ve thought through and prepared for all the ways that my actions will bite me in the ass, but… I’m aware that’s just asking for a reality check.

Self-awareness has to count for something, right?

I had a good amount of support beforehand.

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And I don’t just mean the friends who said, “Wow, f**k those people. You should quit.”

I knew that quitting would shift my former workload onto teammates who didn’t need or deserve it on their plate. But, even so, they made it very clear that they were still 100% behind me. Humbled, I helped out from behind the scenes (maybe a few covert texts about where I’d saved files, what to do in certain situations, etc.)

And then, after, I received a surprising amount of support from people who came out of the woodwork:

  • One coworker said she was proud of me and called me a bad-ass.
  • Another coworker said she would’ve been surprised if I hadn’t quit.
  • Another coworker said that my replacement had better be nothing short of God Himself (heh).
  • A director from an entirely different department said she was disappointed in the leadership team of my department.
  • Two associate directors made it a point to seek out my number and text/call me with their support and offers of help in any way they could.
  • Best for last–I swear I’m not making this up a la r/ThatHappened–a sub-team of spunky ladies applauded me as I left the building for the last time (I lied above about not coming back – I had to sneak back in the next morning to collect my Spiderman coffee mug. No man left behind!)

The validation felt good. All in all, it only reaffirmed that I had made the right choice.

The importance of f**k you money.

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One might think that, having written the phrase ‘piddly temp-wages’ above, my choices were ‘my pride’ or ‘my mortgage payment’.

Hah! Think again.

People who would think that obviously don’t subscribe to this blog – or literally any other personal finance blog which follows the first commandment of FIRE:

Thou shalt not live paycheck-to-paycheck.’

That’s right, I was able to take a hard, scrutinizing look at my stash, ask myself “Is my pride worth this dollar amount?” and answer with a resounding “Hell yes.”

You see, I was working for temp-wages because it was the exact function, industry, and location that I want to pursue professionally, not because I needed the money. (Okay, well, maybe just a little bit.)

The f**k you money isn’t going to last forever, I know that. I’d better figure out a plan and soon. Good thing that…

I’ve got my side hustles.

Judging by my burn-rate, were I to do nothing more than lie in bed in a drunken depression 24/7, I’ve got about four months until disaster. Luckily, instead of drunk and depressed, I’m plucky and full of gumption. I’m still working on my professional goals, but now that I’ve got more time to side hustle (in fact, about 40 hours per week more than I had before, one could estimate), wouldn’t that mean more $$$? And wouldn’t more $$$ mean delaying D-Day by that much more?

(In a perfect world, one could dare hope that side-hustling pushes D-Day far enough away that it actually, if accidentally, becomes FIRE, but I’ll keep that one locked away in my hope chest. One day at a time, here.)

In the past few days, I’ve revamped my Rover.com profile, texted my old supervisor at the catering company where I was bartending, applied for weekend shifts at a university bar, and reached out to a local contact who had been interested in me writing content for her website. I find that making a list of actionable ideas and following through on them is effective at keeping anxiety at bay.

There’s still drinking and sleeping in, to be sure, but I’m keeping disciplined – up by 8:30 a.m., no alcohol or video games until after 5 p.m., and in bed before the witching hour. If you’re going to work from home, well then, you’d better work.

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.+++.

What do you think? Crazy lady is crazy? You wouldn’t be alone. If nothing else, I hope I served as a little bit of wish fulfillment for everyone who’s ever wished they could say, “Shove this Jay Oh Bee.”

Now… who’s hiring?


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5 comments / Add your comment below

  1. This post was hilarious! I loved it so much! “Regards” is like “Go fuck yourself” times a hundred..but classy haha! May your side hustles runneth over girl!

    1. 😀 😀

      My initial sign-off was ‘all my best’ because I thought it would read as insincere as something like ‘hugs and kisses’, and they for sure would know I meant it as ‘Go fuck yourself’. A friend convinced me that ‘Regards’ was the classier version of that and had the same effect!

  2. I’m reading this at lunchtime at work, and I seriously did a happy dance in my chair (I’m not particularly bold, no table dancing for me). Miss Sylvia, they were shit and I’m very proud of you! You did all the right things, and the support and validation from your colleagues backs up that it really was them, not you. You go girl!

    1. Thank you!! I was totally preparing to get scolded by, well, EVERYONE after I pulled the trigger. This assignment was at a business school, so I was ready to get ripped a new one for forsaking the tenets of professionalism (or something like that LOL), but it was amazing how supportive everyone was.

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