Why I Left My Job To Pursue My Career
On April 16th I wrote my blog "I'm Not About This Full Time Life No More" about my dissatisfaction with working full time as it was stifling my creativity and I wanted to kick people down in my workplace on a daily basis!
Crazy that exactly 8 months of writing a blog that on the 16th December 2016 I am leaving my job!
Yes! *busses a bumflick in celebration* Let me go back to what happened 2 months ago, I was half way through the term within my job. Not only am I the Head Of Year 11, they also made me the Head Of Year 9 too! Yes 2 whole year groups to myself...that's a lot of flipping children to be responsible for (244 to be exact) and my gosh has it been stressful! Let me break it down to you all, being a Head Of Year means that you are solely responsible for the student within your year group. From their attendance, punctuality, uniform, progress in lessons, barriers to learning, knowing their parents, attending external meetings for them, knowing their allergies, how to calm them down, how to motivate them, how to engage their parents the only thing I don't do...is teach them and wipe their backsides. I kid you not, being a Head Of Year basically makes you their second mum/dad I see these children more than I see my own family, I get called "Miss" more than my own name and I spend time with children that are not my own!
I was still on a high from having 2 dates of my play "Ex-periences" being shown at The Lost Theatre, something that I've wanted to do for so long and I'll admit to this day I still struggle to congratulate myself for achieving it because I know there's so much more that I could and I want to do in terms of my writing. Now that I had put on my play something was still bugging me as to what I wanted to do next, I had start blogging again, put on a play, knowing what I wanted to do business wise, really knowing myself as a woman yet here I was stuck in a job that I didn't really want to be in anymore.
So I decided instead of complaining about it, I was ready to take action. Growing up, I was instilled in me to always have a job. I have had a job since I was 16 years old, do you think I could turn to my Caribbean mother and say I didn't want to work?
My mother would have kicked me out of the house quicker than I could blink! So I began looking for part time roles mostly within the field of theatre, writing, film but because I've been working within education for 6 years I was out of the loop. I searched every job website you could think of, but after a few weeks I realised that the reason I couldn't find the job I wanted was because deep down I knew that I no longer wanted to work for anyone anymore. To move from one job to another meant that I wasn't making any progress for myself and writing at all and the vicious circle would continue. Then God graced me with half term within October so I took myself to a recruitment agency and signed up to find some short term work, and within 2 days of signing up they had found me an admin role within a school that was simple, would have me in and out, give me time to work on my writing and finally had no responsibility. It was everything that I was looking for so I told them I was interested!
Problem was...I still hadn't given in my notice into work because I was being a punk. One thing I hate doing is letting people down, I knew that I had a team relying on me, students who I had a bond with and financial responsibilities. Leaving your job is a brave thing to do, especially when you've never quit a job before like myself. So without telling anyone I wrote my notice, and put it into the Headteacher's pigeon hole at 4:35pm and left my school abruptly.
However the moment I gave in my notice...I felt such a huge relief! It felt like I had finally taken my life back into my own hands, I was being a boss, I was believing in myself and my abilities and I didn't care what others would say or think about what I had just done. I was so happy...happy like when you've lost some weight even though you've done NOTHING to lose it, happy like when you find £20 in your purse/wallet when you are broke, happy when the item you've wanted for so long goes on sale! It was past happy...it was joy.
I immediately began planning what I was going to do the next 2 months of my notice (yeah my notice period is hella long.) I began going to workshops and events to do with writing and blogging in order to learn as much as I could before I took the plunge into being self-employed. I watched YouTube tutorials like it was Netflix, read up on blog posts, interviews and spoke with my close entrepreneurial friends to make sure I was doing the right thing and to avoid me losing my damn mind.
I managed to secure the temporary job which I start in January, it pays well and it gives me the freedom that I am looking for as I begin to transition into becoming self-employed. Like I said before, I have always dreamt of being 30 and self-employed and I am 3 months away from turning into the dirty 30 (woohoo) so there is no better way to enter my 30's than knowing everything that is going to happen in 2017 my #YearOfLavish is going to be on my own terms!
If you are considering leaving your job like myself to pursue your dreams my top tips to you would be:
1) PLAN, PLAN and PLAN SOME MORE
You need direction of what you are going to do next? How are you going to achieve it? What's the ultimate goal? If Plan A doesn't work do you have an alternative?
2) Save every penny like your life depended on it
I suck at saving especially when I have an addiction to H&M and sales, but I realised that H&M doesn't pay my rent and I need to be smarter with my money as I move to become an entrepreneur. As soon as I got paid I set up a standing order to move £300 of it into my savings account and within 3 months I've already nearly saved £1000, it kinda makes me want to slap myself because if I had been this disciplined years ago I could have alot more in my savings *sigh*
3) Research your field
Let me tell you something, being a creative is not just about talent. It takes many hours of crafting, editing, re-writing, reading to understand your voice and who you are writing to! I began blogging with no idea about the blogging world and 8 years down the line my God has it evolved! Now I have to learn about SEO, apps to use, Google Analytics, Batch Processing, Content Calender to just name a few. Being part of the "No Bull Blog School" by Sarah Akwisombe and Nadine Sandcroft "Women's Blogging Club" I finally feel equipped within my field and know what I am doing, it's now on me to do implement everything that I have learned.
4) Believe in yourself
There is a reason that you want to pursue your career, believe in your abilities, you won't know everything and that is fine. Believe that whatever you are supposed to know...you will pick up on the way. There are going to be times when you will panic, think have you done the right thing, want to go back to the normality and security of your 9-5. But there is something inside of you that knows that the life you are living is not enough. There is something that tells you to at least try because if you don't then you will never know, I can't tell you when the right time to leave your job will be, only you will know that and when you do...nothing will get in your way not even yourself!
I regularly have conversations with God and speak about what I'm worried about, how grateful I am, I praise him and I speak about everything and anything. Even though I'm not the most religious of people, I do have a spiritual relationship with God and it's got me through some hard times believe me. Praying gives me a calmness that I can't possibly put into words, time and time again I've seen God answer my prayers and then some and I truly believe that I am doing what God meant for me to do so I have a purpose. Knowing what your purpose is in life gives you encouragement and meaning. So whoever you choose to pray too...thank them for what you have, what you will achieve and for being alive!
Do I know what's ahead of me? Absolutely not! Am I slightly scared? HELL YEAH but I can honestly say through the highs and lows of the emotions that I've been experiencing I AM READY! It's going to be hard saying goodbye to my students and to the staff that I've worked so closely with but I had to do this for myself and can't wait to take on this journey with you guys into 2017 and beyond!
If you want some support on leaving your job, pursuing your writing/blogging please feel free to email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org !