Monday, October 28, 2013

Leap of Faith

Today is my last day at my job. I'm starting a freelance career, and with it a new phase of my life. Striking out on my own is scary. I'm used to the security of a regular paycheck, employer-provided health insurance, and an easy job I know I can accomplish with minimal effort. In many ways it was incredibly comfortable, but it also made me miserable. I wasn't challenged. Worse, I didn't feel valued or like I had a purpose, which made me even more miserable.

I have a bad habit of staying in comfortable but unhealthy situations . There's something about the familiar that seems so safe, almost homey. When it's healthy, it feels like a cocoon: warm and perfectly suited to me. But when it's unhealthy, it quickly becomes more like a straightjacket. I feel static and stuck, too constrained to be happy but too comfortable to make a change.

After years of unhappiness in my job, I finally took a leap of faith earlier this year. After arguing myself in circles, I scrounged up the courage to tell my boss I'd be leaving at the start of 2014. I started pursuing freelance work, and slowly, things fell into place. Small jobs came my way through word of mouth, and then two bigger ones, including the first one I ever bid competitively. I built a website, I met with clients, and I realized that I felt revitalized - excited, even. I suddenly had more work than I could do while keeping my day job. So two months ago I told my boss that I'd be leaving earlier than planned, and now here I am: doing work that I actually enjoy, for clients who value my contributions (or seem to, anyway). And while I'm still terrified about the loss of security, I already feel happier.

I learned an important lesson about pursuing what I want: I can step away from the safety net, take a leap of faith, and find myself better off than I imagined before.


zalary said...

congratulations! anything worth a damn is usually difficult. you rock!

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