Life Reboot: Know When to Quit

Before leaving my last job, I gave it six months to improve. I wrote a letter to my supervisor asking for a raise, arguing that I was continually doing more work but receiving no additional compensation.

After submitting my request, I made a promise to myself: At the end of six months, if I hadn’t received the raise as requested then I would quit my job. The time came, and I quit.

Looking back on it now, I know it was the right decision. After two years with the organization, it was time to quit. Here’s why:

More Work, Same Income

Since I earned salary, my income was constant. Since I am proactive by nature, I took on additional projects outside of my job description. The result? Being taken advantage of by my employer for two years.

Now, this wasn’t my employer’s fault — we just weren’t the best match for each other. The job was definitely more suited for someone that would take the “do the least amount of work possible without getting fired” approach. Consequently, my “go getter” approach didn’t fit in.

Having failed to realize this, I worked hard expecting a raise that would never manifest. Strangely, the other thing I failed to realize was that getting a raise wouldn’t actually help me:

Getting a Raise Only Helps Temporarily

Getting a raise would’ve only corrected my situation temporarily. A larger income would result in larger amounts of work, meaning it wouldn’t be long before the additional work exceeded the value of the raise. In other words, the raise would only satisfy me for a finite amount of time before I was in the same position of being taken advantage of.

Readers with business sense are probably thinking “What do you mean, being taken advantage of? That’s how business is designed to work — the business pays you less than they plan to earn from you.”

My point is that I don’t fit the standard business model. I don’t like being told what to do, I get bored quickly when I’m not doing something challenging, and I like earning income that is a direct result of how hard I worked for it.

In other words, I don’t like the traditional idea of working — trading time for money seems inefficient, especially when there are more things I want to do with my time besides work. After coming to terms with this, I’m grateful that my request for a raise was refused.

If I had received the raise, I wouldn’t have quit when I did. I would’ve stayed around until the temporary satisfaction expired — and further stifled the entrepreneur in me.

Once I made the decision to quit, I moved to another state with a plan to reinvent myself. Instead of looking to work for someone else, I began working for myself. I started writing original articles for LifeReboot, and I made another promise to myself: In six months, if my site wasn’t earning an average of $10 a day, then I’d give up my entrepreneurial adventure and look for more traditional work.

The Ideal Relationship -- Same Work, Increasing Income

If you were given a choice of how you’d like the relationship between how hard you work and how much you earn from it, I’m certain you’d like something where you could do the same amount of work but get more income. When I sought out an income that takes advantage of exponential growth, I believed I would never achieve it working a traditional job.

Creating six month deadlines for myself have helped me create positive change in my life. If I hadn’t decided to quit my previous job, LifeReboot would still be just an idea in my head. If I hadn’t given LifeReboot a time limit to earn a specific value, I may not have worked as hard as I did.

Which brings me to my point: Look around you. Imagine where current trends will be taking you in the next few years. If you like where you’re going, then keep at it — but if you don’t, then start making some changes.

(Original Article: Know When To Quit, and When Not To)

Related: Lies You Will Hear When Pursuing Your Dreams

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08.13.13  12:00PM    SHAUN B

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