Why Quitting Your Job is a Radical Act of Self-Love

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You finally did it.

You finally decided to take the plunge and hand in your resignation letter from your soul-sucking job. You're continuously overcoming the fear of the unknown. But besides that, you can't help feeling so many mixed emotions.

You feel overwhelmed, scared, excited and weirdly enough, guilty.

At least, that's how I feel. As I was talking to another friend who also moved on from her most recent nursing position, she also mentioned feeling guilty.

"I feel like I took the easy way out."

And those words hit me. I hadn't thought about it before, but I couldn't help but think, "did I take the easy way out?"

As I reflected on my past experiences as an Emergency nurse, I don't believe that quitting your job is taking the easy way out.

On the contrary, quitting a job that makes you miserable is a courageous act of self-love. Here's why.

Quitting your job means your putting yourself first

As a nurse, my job is to literally care.

I cared about my patients. I cared about how I acted around my colleagues, patients and family members constantly. The act of caring 24/7 is exhausting. Sometimes, you don't care about the smallest things, but being a nurse, it's your job.

But sometimes, the act of caring so much drains you.

It drains you to a point where you no longer have the energy to take care of yourself or your loved one. Instead, you become irritable, anxious, stressed, short-tempered and unkind. And you hate yourself for it. After some time, it becomes a vicious cycle.

You go to your job, you recover on your days off, and then you do it all over again.

The result? You become a burnout, you run out of energy to pursue your interests and before you know it, you're stuck in a rat race. But when you quit your job, you consciously decide that you want to put yourself first, whatever that means for you.

You decide that you want a better job, health, career, or relationships.

Because when you're no longer in a job that makes you miserable, you can do things you like starting a business, writing a personal blog, or even making YouTube videos.

You learn to tap into the inner self that helps you take better care of yourself.

Quitting your job means you no longer tolerate mediocre things

There's a new concept I recently learned called the Upper Limit Problem.

Coined by psychologist Gay Hendricks in his book, The Big Leap, it's the idea that humans have a thermostat of happiness.  He says that we only allow ourselves to be happy up to a certain point.

When we become too happy, we panic, consciously or unconsciously sabotage ourselves to go back to our baseline happiness.

This is because, from an evolutionary perspective, humans need to learn how to be safe and not be happy. Our cavemen ancestors needed to survive from the bears. Having too many fruits or food at the time, were not their priority.

But, as civilization evolved, meeting our basic needs became the norm and many of us, especially those who live in a first-world country, are pretty safe.

But our brain didn't evolve like our external circumstances.

For that reason, no matter what we do and go through in life, the brain is always asking, "is this safe or not?". The brain doesn't ask, "are you happy or not?".

So when you quit a job that you hate, you raise your standard of happiness.

You realize that you want a job where you can feel good, be happy and feel respected. But the thought of it makes us feel guilty.

When you make money from doing things like writing, we formulate thoughts like, is it okay to feel this good to make this much money?

And the truth is, it's totally okay.

You just have to learn how to get used to it. You soon will realize that you don't have to struggle to be successful, especially if you enjoy the things what other people might consider work.

Quitting your job means you're ready to step to your higher self

Your highest self is someone who kinda knows the purpose of yourself in this world.

I know that purpose is a big word, something that most people are scared of. But your purpose is learning what you're meant here to do. It's a combination of your skills, unique interests, passions and something of value that others need.

And quitting your job is a catapult for this.

When you remove the greatest stressor in your life, you're forced to slow down and rethink your life. You take the time to get to know yourself.

And that lets you step into your highest self.

When you love someone, you'll do your best to get to know them, to know what they like and don't like. And then you'll try to avoid doing things that they don't like because that's how you show them that you love them.

When you do this with yourself, you become more kind, giving, loving and compassionate towards yourself and other people.

Eventually, you become a better member of society as you become anchored to who you are and what you're meant to do.

Quitting your jobs means you're ready to become your own person

When you disassociate yourself from your profession, you slowly become your own person.

I was scared that if I wasn't an Emergency nurse, I didn't know who I was. I knew I didn't want to become a different type of nurse so letting go of that identity is quite hard.

But if your expectation and reality don't match, or worse, it's making you miserable, is it worth holding on to that identity?

My expectation of becoming a nurse was to help others and make an impact, and that wasn't happening in my reality.

And I thought, what if I can have the same outcome doing something else?

What if you were to could make an impact in your own way? Don't you owe it to yourself to find out?

Quitting your job is a sign that you're letting go of the societal expectations that are stuck in your head.

Final Thoughts

Quitting your job feels like you gave up, mixed with other overwhelming emotions.

It can feel like you let others down, like your coworkers, managers, friends, or family. It can feel like you wasted your degree. It can feel like you took the easy way out.

But the truth is, we are more than our jobs.

Sometimes, you have to let go especially if it affects the way you show up to the world.

If you're no longer able to love, be compassionate or kind, then is that job really worth it?

You rob yourself of the joy that you're meant to experience when you stay in a job that makes you miserable.

And the truth is that you have more to give to society when you prioritize your needs.

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Jerine Nicole

Jerine Nicole