Sunday, September 30, 2018

Three Changes I've Noticed Since Quitting My Job

It has been a month since I left full-time employment, and I've noticed some changes. I provided an overview in this YouTube video, but I also wanted to go into a little more detail in this blog post.



1) I have a lot more energy.

When I was working full-time, I was always exhausted. It got to the point that I was tired pretty much right when I got home, and I could barely keep my eyes open after dinner. I had no creative energy, but I still wanted to post YouTube videos, so I would take the lazy way out and film what was easiest for me, like empties videos or vlogs. I had a lot of other videos I wanted to film (bags I sold and why, finances, etc.), but I just didn't have the mental energy to think through the message.

Besides my lack of creativity, my low energy levels also meant I didn't want to go out very much. I was strict about going out only 2 or 3 days during the work week and only 1 day on the weekend. I didn't like to make stops or detours on my way home, because I felt like I had to rush home to cook dinner. The weeks became very monotonous and routine. I felt like I was living my life on repeat.

Now that I have a lot more time and space to explore life's possibilities, I have so much energy. I am always creating or thinking about creating. I'm constantly jotting down ideas or notes for future videos, blog posts, or projects. I have the energy to go out with friends, experiment with different recipes, and watch a late night film with hubby. I have the energy to stay up late, because my mind is racing with fun ideas. Each day is different, but equally special.

2) I feel happier and lighter.

The amount of stress I felt at work was impacting my physical and mental health. I didn't talk about this in a lot of detail in the video, but I was experiencing shooting pains up my arms, pressure in my chest, and light-headedness. On a few occasions, I would be talking to coworkers, and I would feel like I was about to faint. My mental health and personality suffered as well. I was highly irritable, impatient, short-tempered, and anxious.

It got to the point where I would have a drink almost every night. I reasoned that it was only a glass of wine or half a beer, but drinking so frequently was uncharacteristic of me. It seems obvious now, but at the time, I didn't realize it was related to my stress levels. I didn't try to drink less when I left work, but it naturally followed the lack of stress. I only have a drink 2 to 3 times a week now (sometimes even less!).

Now that I am no longer experiencing such high levels of stress, I feel so much happier and lighter. I don't want to make it seem like I'm happy all the time as I still go through ups and downs, but the general level of happiness is significantly higher. I smile and laugh more, I sing and dance more, I'm sillier, and I'm more easygoing.

3) I feel like I can be more authentically me.

I don't think I explained this concept very well in the video, so I'm going to try again here. I've always felt like I couldn't be myself at work. Perhaps this was due to my own insecurities or fear of being judged, but I've always felt like I had to be a different person at work. I've always felt torn between my work life and my personal life. This was very difficult for me, as I have always prided myself on marching to the beat of my own drum. Not being true to myself caused all sorts of problems. I gradually became less confident in myself and my decisions. I gradually became increasingly hard on myself. I gradually started feeling a lot of self-loathing.

Now that I no longer feel like I am living a double life, I feel much more like myself. This positive change has manifested itself in a lot of different ways. Leaving a stable and well-paying job is very much against societal norms, and I regained so much confidence in myself when I made this decision. I am proud of myself for making this decision. I've noticed that I'm more flexible, more independent, and more selective with how I spend my time. I no longer want to plan very many things in advance. I prefer instead to go with the flow, roll with the punches, and see what life will bring. I'm starting to believe in myself again, I'm starting to trust myself again, and I'm starting to be kind to myself again.

***

If you had told me a month ago that I would have noticed all these changes, I may have believed you, but I wouldn't have understood how drastically different I would feel. I feel like a new person. I know it's still early in the transition, and as House Stark says, "Winter is Coming," but I want to thank you all for being supportive and for your kindness over the past month. I will continue to keep you updated on this journey.

When I started blogging every day, I really only committed for a month, because I wanted an "out" in case I got tired of it, but I've been enjoying this creative outlet so much that I will keep up with daily content for at least another month. I would like to focus on financial content in October, not only because I have a few requests, but also because I want to reassess my own investments. Please stay tuned for lots of financial content coming both on my YouTube channel and on this blog!

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