For as long as I can remember, all I ever wanted to do was quit my day job. I was insanely jealous of all the folks who seemed to be making their living entirely from being an actor and all the folks who started a new business and had it explode (in success) seemingly overnight.
Let’s face it. Quitting our day job often seems like the golden ticket and we would do anything to win it.
The Reality About Day Jobs
Unfortunately for most of us, throwing in the towel isn’t really a possibility. Without them, we’d be left (at best) living off our savings with not a lot of spare money to work on our passion or (at worst) scrambling to replace it with a new job.
So instead, we often spend our time at our day jobs hating them or at the very least resenting them. We allow our day jobs to drain our energy rather than fill us up. All while dreaming of the day that a coveted performance gig comes into our lives, or our business has a major pay day so we can justify quitting.
What if you didn’t have to wait until that big gig or business payoff to feel good in your day-to-day life?
I want to live in integrity with my values. And I suspect you do too.
When we’re slogging through a day job that doesn’t feel aligned with our values, it starts to chip away at our integrity. The trust and love that we have for ourselves. If we don’t honor our own values, who else is going to?
I’ve had more day jobs in my life than I can count on with two hands, some were more aligned than others, and I can say without a doubt that I was able to do my best work as an actor and creative when I had a job that felt most aligned.
When you are deeply out of alignment, it can feel like the shift to a job that is more aligned is also impossible. We tend to focus on our survival and adding “find a new job” to our to-do list can feel like it is going to break the dam.
You don’t have to find a new job right away
I’m here to show you that maybe things aren’t as bad as they seem.
There is actually a lot you can do, right now, to shift your experience of your current position.
So before you quit, I invite you to go through this journaling process:
Part I: Imagine you no longer need a day job and answer the following questions from that perspective
- How would you feel?
- What do I value the most?
- What would my day to day life look like? (Include things like how much free time you have, what days you work and rest, what time you wake up and go to sleep.
Part II: Begin to close the gap between your life with your current job and your imagined life without one
- How can I bring more of my desired feelings to my current job?
- Which of my values are supported by my job right now? Which ones aren’t?
- Is there something you can do to engage all your values at your current job?
- Can you make any adjustments to your life and perhaps your day job to get closer to your ideal day-to-day life?
We can’t always fix a job that doesn’t feel aligned with this inquiry but it’s definitely a great start. And your answers to these questions will help you when you are ready to look for a new job.
I’d love to hear how it goes! Tell me in the comments below.
PS: If you’d like to go deeper, you are invited to the upcoming workshop “Finding Aligned Work”, co led by Lili Torre on Thursday January 19th at 7pm EST. Click here to learn more.