How to quit your 9-5 in 4 steps?

Imagine working your whole life in a job that you don’t love. Living a life that doesn’t feel like you’re in charge. Day in, day out, a cycle of apartment, commute, office, commute, gym, dinner …… and repeat. And that just goes on until you’re 68 and can finally retire! 

Then there’s an unforeseen event and you don’t get to enjoy that hard earned retirement.

It doesn’t have to be like this.

1. Think about why you’d like to leave your 9 till 5 job.

Your answers will give you your motivation. They give you permission to dream, they’ll inspire you, keep you going, even if at times it gets difficult. 

So write your answers down and frame them! 

No time to read? Listen to my podcast!

A study conducted by Upwork and the Freelancers Union from 2019, shows that 57 million Americans do some form of freelance work. Part time or full time. That’s about 35% of the overall workforce over there. And due to further technological development, this trend looks likely to increase. In other words remote working and gig work will become the norm. 

People will realise that they can work at times that suit them, have time for more creative work and outsource the boring stuff. 

I can work and then rest when I want. In a 9 till 5, office-based environment, we can look busy all day, but we’re probably not effective or smart for that whole period.

But when you burst out of the constraints of the 9 till 5 world and co-location, you work with focus and energy, at times (and in places) that suit you best and allow you to optimise your energy and drive. So why not work for a company in London but live somewhere near the beach in Portugal?

This is win-win, not just for your wellbeing but also for your bank account as you won’t need to pay a high city rent. Even if you work in a gig fashion but must be located somewhere specific, after your gig ends you get to choose where you go next. You can relax for the next few months. 

When you work for yourself, at your own pace, in surroundings that please you, you’ll create products or services that fit perfectly your skill set and character. There is no other ‘you’, everything about you is unique!

I hope this helps you to find your ‘why’ 🙂

2. Reduce your risks.

A good way of doing this is to make notes about the worst-case scenarios and how you would deal with each. 

For example, you work for a big corporation and want to start working as a gig worker or freelancer or maybe in a small startup team. Write down what happens if you stop working and become a freelancer immediately, but are not able to pull off getting a client within the next 3 months. 

Most likely you won’t be that much worse off. You can start getting your first client before you stop working, and you could always get another job. Here are some other questions you could ask yourself: 

  • How much money do I need to live for the next 6 months? 
  • What if I’m not allowed to work for someone else? 
  • Do I care what other people think of me if I fail? 
  • Will I need to adjust my plan or pivot?

If you can answer these questions you might already see how it’s possible to do things differently, in a way more aligned to your life goals.

3. Taking some time off before you start might also help to change your mind-set.

Take that time to reflect. 

I went for a 6 months journey with my girlfriend after I left my job in the investment industry in London. For me, it was the right thing to do, because I didn’t know what I wanted to do exactly, luckily I had some savings that meant I could do that. Instead of taking time out, you could just take a long holiday, use that time to really think about what the best next steps might be for you. 

4. Other things to think about.

  • What kind of things engage you, excite you? 
  • What would be your target earnings for the rest of your life? 

Answers to questions like these really get your creativity going. 

So now imagine you lie in your bed at the age of 90 and you have the feeling that your life is coming to an end. But you know you’ve done everything you can to live a fulfilling life, where you were not restricted or paralysed by fear and anxiety. You had plentiful time for your family, your hobbies, and you worked on projects that were meaningful and important to you. In short, you lived life like a hero. 

I hope you enjoyed this post and found it helpful. Try my podcast where I speak about more topics like this and where I also invite interesting people to talk about what amazing things they’ve done.

Cheers guys, until next time!

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