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Six months ago I found myself at my naturopath's office complaining of depression, heavy fatigue and a general feeling of "Blah." She asked me a purposefully broad and vague question: "What do you like? What makes you feel good?" I looked out her window and replied "the Sun." She had me tested for vitamin D deficiency and not surprisingly, I was low. 

I say that this is not surprising despite the fact that I live in a climate that sees sunshine 350 days a year. I personally never saw it because my last two jobs had been in a basement. Four years of sun deprivation to a person who so dearly loves and craves its warmth and light. 

I had already taken some major steps towards my goal of being happier. I had quit an intensely stressful job that had left me with adrenal fatigue (aka the first three years of basement life), and found a more positive, less stressful environment (though it just so happened to also be in a basement). I had somewhat impulsively begun a yoga teacher training program, after walking out of a hot yoga session feeling better than I had in ages, and hoping that yoga would hold some secret key to energy and contentment. 

Following the advice of my best friend, and recently certified life coach, I made a "big old list" of things that made me happy: Sun, yoga, live bluegrass, being home on a Monday (or Tuesday, or..), my dogs, my cats, my husband, my best friends, chopping vegetables, eating outside, doing physical projects (even digging irrigation ditches outside inexplicably improved my mood immensely), drinking tea, exploring new places, anything that made me feel self-reliant, flowy skirts and dresses, tank tops, funky jewelry- I began to be able to picture the life that I thought might make me happy. And my current job, working 8-5 five days a week, inside, for someone else, wasn't it. 

So now, five years into the career that I have worked and studied for, and lived and breathed- I have decided to give it all up. For the grand experiment of trying to live a life that fulfills me and makes me happy. This means leaving my profession, and the steady paycheck and healthcare it provides and leaping into the unknown and hoping to fly. I am starting from scratch. 

Its terrifying and exciting to start all over again, and to go down a path so different than the cultural norm., but I've always loved adventure and you only live once. 

Have you ever taken a huge career leap? What made it worth it for you?


 


03/31/2013 5:21pm

Hey Wren,

Great post, awesome decision! I love that you are reaching for a fulfilling life. Welcome to the club, it's an adventure worth taking.

A few years back I quit my mainstream job to embrace my true passions and haven't looked back. It hasn't always been smooth but I would not go back. It has been more of a adventure in consciousness and growth than I would ever have dreamed of and in living my life more authentically I have connected with more of life that brings me true joy, including wonderful new soul friends.

Enjoy a new life party!!
Hugs and love to you
Cara

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03/31/2013 9:46pm

Thanks Cara! I definitely believe it will be an adventure, like you said! I am so glad that quitting your job has been so successful for you (despite its challenges)!

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03/31/2013 8:37pm

I couldn't be happier for you! You will never regret following your spirit. I quit my 8-5 last August to be a full-time writer and I have never felt better. And the journey is just beginning!

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03/31/2013 9:44pm

Cassandra,
Thanks for your comment, it is good to hear from somebody who quit their 8-5 and lived to tell about it! I don't know many people who have taken the risk in my life, so this helps!

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03/31/2013 8:47pm

I left my job about 5 1/2 years ago and have never looked back. I was very well paid and had great benefits and it was killing me slowly every single day for a variety of reasons. Congrats on taking the leap!!

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03/31/2013 9:48pm

Michele,
It is so inspirational for me to hear from you (and the wonderful women above!) about your journeys. Sometimes it is hard to believe that quitting something stable is the right decision, so knowing people who 5 years later believe in it is really helpful! Thanks!

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03/31/2013 9:21pm

Bravo! I want to cheer you from the sidelines for following your heart and taking the risk to be happy and fulfilled. What an inspiration to others, basement life begone!

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04/05/2013 2:54am

Woohoo! Good for you making that leap. I left my corporate job that gave me no joy at all to start my own business 9 years ago. It's had its up and downs, but none of the downs were ever as bad as the soul-destroying misery of 'the job', and mostly it's a joyful journey of discovery and inspiration! Good luck! x

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04/08/2013 6:21am

I've read all your posts, and I think you might be my long lost twin! Although my job was not in a basement, I called it "twilight in shades of grey". It made me sick but paid well and gave me benefits, which I needed only because I had that job. That was 7 years ago. I've had some other jobs in the meantime, but they were no better.
We are kind of new to our yard and I've been trying to write about our journeys too! I look forward to reading more of your stories! It sounds like we're kind of on the same path even if in very different parts of the country!

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Wren
04/09/2013 8:25pm

Hey Stef- I just checked out your blog and it certainly does seem like we are on the same path! (Sorry I couldn't post a comment there, I don't have any of the logins required, but I will work on that).

It seems like you've got a great start on the dream garden! I am hoping to start an herbalism course soon and I am definitely interested in learning more about your herb garden/experience!

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    About Me

    My name is Melisa (but I go by Wren) and I might be a little crazy. I decided to quit my solid, respectable day job because I missed sunshine. And because I have had this nagging desire to control my own destiny for as long as I can remember. I took a leap of faith into a new life, starting from scratch.

    This blog is documentation of our experiments and adventures in creating a more sustainable, self-reliant urban homestead and crafting a happier, more meaningful life and career.  

    I dont know what this journey holds, but I hope that the winding path ahead includes yoga, bright colors, herb gardens and goats. 

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