Why I Quit Working Full-Time and Don’t Regret It
I quit working. I mean I quit working full-time jobs.
So, I quit working full-time
Imagine doing something for nearly every minute of your waking life, for 20 years and then BOOM it is gone.
Ever since I got my MBA degree, I was a banker. To say that banking was my career is inaccurate. It was much more. My work was my life. It defined my days, and all of it. I was consumed.
My work-life was my life – even on weekends and holidays. I have been called back from an annual vacation. Another time, I was asked to cancel an overseas trip we had planned. Just saying how my work was front and center in my life. It was priority number one.
I have worked on 48-72 hours with only 3-4 hours of sleep on multiple occasions. On these days, I would come home in the wee hours of the morning (while my daughter was fast asleep), catch an hour-two of sleep, have a quick shower and change of clothes, and be back out (before she woke up for school.) I enjoyed it.
And I was rewarded. There were accolades and recognition. I got great feedback from the bosses, amazing appraisals and on-time promotions. At home, I was the poster child of success among my cousins. I worked hard.
Life was great. Until it wasn’t
I loved my work (well – for most of the time). I learned new skills (organization, negotiation, handling a team), I formed great friendships. Quality of life improved over the years. Today I am able to lead a great life because of the money I earned. (and continue to because I managed to save and invest some of the money I earned from these jobs).
Then came a time when my personal growth started to slow down. I was no longer enjoying work as much as I did in the previous years or learning new things. I was not as excited about waking up each day and reaching office on time ( I still did it just because I hate tardiness). The work was no longer as fulfilling as it used to be.
I felt guilty about not fulfilling my role as a mom, a wife.
My home need more attention. How could I do so without feeling conflicted?
I wanted to put up a nice dinner on the plate for my family.
I wanted to go for my daughter’s sports day without having to constantly look at my phone to see if anything urgent needed my attention.
If she felt unwell, I wanted to be able to spend the day with her.
Also, I did not want to be working for someone else but be doing something of my own. I wanted to be able to invest more in my family, my house and my kid. I wanted to do this at the time I wanted to and not just on weekends and holidays.
Did I waste my career by quitting full-time work?
Did I waste my education? Am I a loser?
The decision to quit a full-time job was not easy. It had been coming for a couple of years before I was able to take the plunge. Yes, it took me a few years to take that leap of faith.
I do not regret my decision. Yes, I no longer have the security of a monthly income. Family finances are going to be tighter. But I will be doing things that I have been missing out on for so many years of my life.
How did I feel when I finally decided to quit working full-time?
I went through an entire gamut of emotions – if there was excitement, it was accompanied by anxiety. The sense of freedom was accompanied by a vacuum in my routine. The loss of a stable paycheck was real. I had to accept the fact that I society would view me differently, now.
I know there are many moms who struggle with the decision to quit working, just like I did for many years. To each one of YOU, I say, you are not JUST a stay-at-home-mom. You are much more –
You are the provider.
The provider of your child’s values, the provider of family memories, the provider of nourishment for souls and body.
You are the keeper.
The keeper of your child’s secrets, the keeper of family schedules, of projects, parties, and plans.
You are the essence.
The essence of your family, that makes everything blossom.
And I salute you, your work and your decision.
What Do YOU Think?
How many of you are SAHM/WAHM? Did any you work full time before quitting? Are you happy with your decision?
P.S. I loved this post from Lucky Orange Pants about SAHM moms being not ‘Just SAHM’ called I am the Keeper. Go ahead and read it.
Photo by bruce mars from Pexels