All people who have ever imagined to change career and do what actually fulfill them, surely had also imagined the onus of this transition. Financial issues, where to start, how to stabilize and etc, but there is one aspect of this change that some people do not consider until you begin to feel its effects.
I saw this issue be addressed in a text I read recently called “How quitting my corporate job for my startup dream f*cked my life up”. By coincidence, I also talked about it with a great friend, who wants to quit the corporate world and go to the branch of gastronomy.
I did the following question to her: “Are you prepared to no longer follow the topics your circle of friends talk? She looked at me strangely, after all, why would that happen? It’s just a change of job in search of something better, no? Not so.
In 2012, when I left the corporate world and went to work in a small company, with no badge and no extension number on my table, I began to have a strange sense of inferiority to my friends who kept their corporate careers. During meetings, everyone knew the latest market movements, who left the company and went to another, and told great professional achievements, which were easily understood by everyone around.
When I would tell something of my work, I seemed to be speaking another language. I felt, at times, not only misunderstood, but silly. It seemed that my work was not as important as the others. And I am not referring to colleagues, but to close and very dear friends, which only worsened the situation.
I started to not want to talk about my work near these friends and I came to think I had to get away, because I did not feel relevant to the group. This sense of inferiority made me question if I had made the right decision and if I was actually receding in my professional life. Sometimes it seemed that everyone was progressing and I was going in the opposite direction.
Despite all the questions that came up, there was something I clung tooth and nail: my purpose. When I left the multinational working, what fulfilled me was very clear. It was this conviction I held to not give up. It was the bad memories I had thatI supported me to raise my head and say to myself: “You’re right, it’s okay to go against the tide.”
For having a clear purpose and also because I believed in my friendships, one day I took courage and told my friends how I felt. I openly spoke about the feeling of inferiority, of not feeling heard and feeling that I wasn’t part of it anymore. I knew it was not maliciously of them, but still I needed to talk.
To my surprise, what I heard only strengthened my beliefs. “Lili, you are an example to us” and also “We admire and envy your courage.” Those sentences were not lip service, but genuine expressions of people who cared about me and knew everything that was behind my decisions.
Today, after two years of my transition, I still have a few insecurities – like everyone – but I am beginning to see the fruits of my labor and the recognition of the achievements I reached from the moment I decided to be happy. My friends are still those of the corporate era. My interaction with them has even improved. And I’ll do my best to help my corporate friend to follow her dream in gastronomy.
Photo credits: http://www.morguefile.com/creative/GaborfromHungary