How To Quit Your Day Job
It’s time to pursue your passions.
In 2010, I quit working as a front desk attendant at a “resort” and decided to go about becoming a full-time freelance writer. I hated my boss (he was a tyrant), I was no longer happy with what I was doing for a living (even the free access to two different pools wasn’t enough to keep me there), and I was tired of being treated like garbage and being paid poorly for it.
I was afraid. I also need to say that it wasn’t an easy thing to do, and it’s still not easy. When you become your own boss you have so much more responsibility, and you’re the one that has to make sure there is money coming in. It’s not the corporation's responsibility, it’s you and only you.
If you feel like you have a great idea to pursue a passion, here are some things you should do before (and to help you determine if you should) you quit your day job.
Make a personal plan.
What are you going to do? Is it going to bring money in right away? Do you have money saved to get by? How long will it take to start making enough money to live on? These are all questions you need to answer in your personal plan.
Is this a job that you’ll be doing a lot of competing for in the market? What is the likelihood of success, failure? Make a personal plan, know what you can risk and what you can’t.
Put away money.
You may need startup money to launch your own business, although there are plenty of businesses you can start that don’t need any money to get going. You also need money to keep paying all your bills and putting food on the table.
Keep business money separate from your personal money, right from the start. Start a savings account where you can put a minimum of six months worth of salary. This is the money you’ll need in order to get by until you can afford to give yourself a paycheck.
Make a business plan.
Don’t start a business without a business plan. Even if you’re going to be a wedding photographer or a freelance writer, your business plan will be the place where you map out what money you need to get going, how long it will take to make income, and how you’re going to market yourself.
If you plan to try to get a business loan, run a crowdfunding campaign for startup cash, or look for backers, you’ll need this business plan so that these people know where their money is going and what the risks are of never getting it back.
Start marketing early.
Once you have your business plan and your startup money, start advertising and getting the word out there on your business. Even if you haven’t officially launched yet you want to have a running website, accounts on social media, and already know which magazines you’re going to run ads with. You want people to be excited so they jump on board the moment you launch.
Give your boss plenty of notice (maybe drop to part-time).
Don’t leave your day job on a bad note. You never know what will happen with your new business venture, and you may need your old boss to give you a good recommendation down the road. Give ample notice, following whatever your employing handbook says (usually at least two weeks).
If you’re skittish about quitting cold turkey, consider going from full-time to part-time and launching your own business in your free time. This way you guarantee some income still coming in from another source until your new business can stand on its own.