Sep 11 2013

Contemplating to quit the job?

Indian Working Women - Comtemplating to quit the job?

Image courtesy Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

To-quit-or-not-to-quit is probably the question that has replaced the to-be-or-not-to-be question in being the most fundamental question working women face each day. Walking the tight rope of balancing responsibilities at home and at office puts us under tremendous stress. And when the children are to be managed too, we wonder all the while about whether to continue or to quit the job.

Come Monday and we continue as if nothing is bothering us deep down because we don’t really know what we should do. We understand that just the thought is not enough. The future is unknown if we quit work and we prefer the known devil to the uncertain future.

Two things may happen when we just keep thinking and continue. A person drags herself for years. It may result in possibly affecting the interest, involvement or effectiveness in the job. Not deliberately but as a result of overall stresses in life and also the indecision. Second possibility one may face is an abrupt, forced break as a result of things falling apart altogether. This may happen when matters get critical and way too out of hands. And it is tricky as one ends up facing all the consequences at the same time which can be very overwhelming for a person to handle.

Surely if we think about it more deeply we will be equipped to make a conscious decision or to be at least prepared for the future. I wondered if the answer lies in our own reasoning whether to quit or not to quit the job.
Here is an attempt to analyze the reasons we give to ourselves and stop thinking any further on the question, stop making anymore efforts.

I cannot sit at home

And that’s right. Highly educated and worthy women have a need to work. It keeps us sane. We have been busy as long as we remember. School, college and then work. We have always had some schedule to follow. Like earlier generations, we have not been at home for years. So we find it difficult to even digest the thought of quitting work and sitting at home.

“The biggest mistake that you can make is to believe that you are working for somebody else. Job security is gone. The driving force of a career must come from the individual. Remember: Jobs are owned by the company, you own your career!” – Earl Nightingale

Over the years working women become really strong. We don’t consider sitting at home at the very first sign of stress. We do our best to hold on to our day jobs. When we are on some small breaks like joining spouse onsite for a month or taking 2 week leave for kid’s exam, we find out that we get bored at home doing nothing. What do we do really? Flip through old magazines when kid is studying. Or try to talk to neighbours’ on topics which we can neither relate to nor have interest in. Obviously such activities do not give us a sense of direction. And so the ultimate declaration takes shape. “I cannot sit at home!”

There is lot of enthusiam in the intial years of work life when we are hardly shouldering any responsibilities. However, after years at work, and increasing responsibilities and time / health constraints a point comes when we start weighing the pros and cons. We start thinking on these lines we have never thought on before.

Well, we don’t have to sit at home “doing nothing”. It surely is not a reason to get scared and stop thinking any further. How will one know without giving it her best shot?

What is needed is to re-think and re-learn how to be at home in a way that makes sense to us.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”  — Albert Einstein

I want to depend on my own money

It is a very noble thought. Just make sure it is not becoming a stubborn pride. So many things depend on the lady of the house because we look after and are good at managing so many things. If it is a health matter or your kid’s health rethink on this reason. Will few months or few years taken off matter a lot to the other important aspects of your life? Can you save some funds and then plan a break to handle things?

It is always wise to save some funds under a separate header as ‘break time money’. Consistently build on this. This is important and will provide necessary cushion for the months or years you may need to be away from work. Unfortunately there aren’t any quick fix solutions available for financial needs. For a working woman, it is wiser to save for this purpose from her very first salary. Don’t think it is too late though, start from this month if you have not planned for it earlier.

I don’t know what else to do

It really is okay to not know what to do next. It is okay to not know it the first day you are at home after leaving day job. You will know it. Have patience, give yourself time.

When was the last time you made an attempt to find it out? Did you have time to find it out? Did you particularly carve out time and spend it only to find out what else you could do? Was this after HSC result? How much life has changed after that? Did you try something new meanwhile if you don’t really know your interests and passions? Start to explore your today. You can do this even while you are working.

“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” – Oscar Wilde

sometime, you consider leaving your current work to find out what kind of life will work for you. Obviously some of the things in the current job / career do not suit you. Don’t jump into something just because you are ‘supposed’ to already know what you want to do next.

And it really is okay to not know what else to do next. It is okay to not know it the first day you are at home after leaving day job. You will know it. Have patience, give yourself time. Don’t get bogged down by the vacuum resulted due to leaving job. Not yet. Explore and research and think and think and think! You will often surprise yourself when you are in this exploration and thinking mode as to how much value this phase adds to you as a person. It reveals to you what your true interests and passions are, what matters the most to you, where you would like to go next and so on till it reveals who you really are!


“If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on.” — Steve Jobs

Have you ended your long time career due to health, family or any other reason? How was your experience? How are you managing? How are you coping? What have you found out?


Leave a Reply