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To quit or not to quit – advice needed

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  • #179697
    Kodi
    Participant

    I need some advice. I’ve worked at the same company for 9.5 years and have never been happy there. It’s not a horrible place to work, I just don’t find it purposeful and it’s gone through many changes – not for the better. I have anxiety, depression and low self esteem and have allowed fear keep me here. I am medicated, which helps, but the last 6 months or so the anxiety is out of control whenever I’m at work, thinking about work, or thinking about changing jobs. I’m not overly anxious in my everyday life, just when it comes to work (I really just want to be a wife and a mother). I feel like my gut is screaming at me to quit this job and though I have sent out a few resumes I haven’t heard back from anyone. My husband has anxiety too and money is a trigger for him. We have enough in savings to maintain our lifestyle for at least a year and more if we cut costs. He and I had a discussion the other night about me giving my notice soon regardless if I’ve found a job or not. I had been delaying that conversation for a long time because the last thing I want to do is take the stress and anxiety off of me and load it all on him. He was calm and seemed fine with it when we spoke but today he is extremely anxious and is not sure why. My fear is that me quitting without another job lined up would put too much stress on him, even if it’s not rational for him to feel that way, he can’t help it. On the other hand, I can’t stomach the thought of staying where I am any longer. I am not a risk taker at all and this seems so risky – but I want it, too. I also worry about being seen as a quitter. Any advice would be appreciated.

    #179721
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kodi:

    The problem I see with you quitting the job is that you plan on looking for and finding another job. If your plan was to quit and not look for another employment, but  be the wife and mother you want to be, then quitting would make sense  to me.

    Thing is, with your anxiety, as you described it here and in your previous thread, you are likely to experience  it in your next job as well, and  so, you quit t his one, you experience at best a temporary relief, soon to be replaced by anxiety over your husband’s  increasing anxiety, soon to lead  to frantic search for another job and landing one where you are miserable again.

    Is it possible for you to be the  wife-and-mother you want to be, to not be employed, can it  possibly work for you and for your husband?

    anita

    #179751
    Kodi
    Participant

    Thank you, Anita. I agree with you that the anxiety would follow me wherever I work, however I don’t think being out of work long term is a possibility for us financially – which is the main reason I’ve stayed in my current job so long. I’ve been a graphic designer for 13 years and am burnt out. I also never thought my designs were very good, which fueled the anxiety and poor self-esteem. I’m interested in writing and have more confidence in my writing skills than my design skills. I’m considering the next job as an interim job while I pursue a potential career in writing. I’d actually enjoy writing about by own experiences with mental and emotional issues to help others, much like you do. I’m looking into jobs that I think would be less stressful (such as admin), where I can just do my job and go home and write on my time. Right now I don’t write much because I’m so exhausted from being anxious all day at work and being a wife and a mother. Ideally a low stress part time job would be great but I don’t know what the future will bring. Unfortunately I don’t deal well with the unknown. My Mother is a big believer in everything happening for a reason and believes that if the veil of anxiety would lift I would see clearly the opportunists in front of me.  When I think back to the major decisions in my life I see that I just “knew”. Not long after I met my husband I knew I wanted to marry him. I knew I wanted a child. I knew I did not want a second child. When we were house hunting I knew which house would be right for our family. When we came across the right rescue dog for us, I knew. When I took this job 9.5 years ago I knew I wasn’t going to like it (I took it for financial reasons – I cried every day at lunch time the first week). How could it be that I was so sure of all of those things but so unsure now? I’ve been searching for that answer for a long time. I apologize for the long post.

    #179763
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kodi:

    Your plan to get a  less stressful job reads excellent to me. Making money from writing- I don’t have experience doing that. I hope you do all the research you can do.

    You are sure that you want to quit. You were sure you weren’t going to like it from the beginning. You are  not sure about quitting because of financial worries, yours and your husband’s- you are sensitive to his level of anxiety. This is one  unknown to you, isn’t it, how he will react over time to you quitting (and before you find a comparable paying job but  less stressful). How can you be sure whether to quit or not when you can’t predict how anxious he will get and if he will be  okay?

    I think it is loving and wise  for you to consider your husband’s well being. It  is so important to his functioning as  a father, for one, and you want to promote your child’s well-being, as well as your husband’s and your own.

    Can you talk more with your husband, make him feel comfortable best you can to share with you, to think through this problem, this question, to quit or not to quit? Talk to him about your anxiety as well. ork together, as a team. Anxiety will continue to  exist for the two of you individually and together. Work together so to minimize it best you can, cooperating for this goal, on an ongoing basis.

    anita

    #179769
    Kodi
    Participant

    Thank you so much for your thoughts. My husband is in turn very loving and sensitive to my feelings. He doesn’t want me to continue to be miserable. I will talk with him again to see if arrive at the same conclusion.

    #179863
    anita
    Participant

    Dear  Kodi:

    You are welcome. It is difficult for a couple to talk about anxiety, it is not a  pleasant topic or a pleasant subjective experience, as you well know. I do. So have a gentle, sensitive talk about it, calm voice, honest, responsible, in small portions, and revisit, regularly. This way you can work as a team for the benefit of the two  of you, a win-win strategy.

    anita

    #180815
    Kodi
    Participant

    Hi Anita,

    My husband and I spoke again and we both came to the conclusion that it was adding more stress on both of us to think of my quitting a job without another one lined up. So unfortunately I’m right back to the spot I’ve been in. One thing I’ve realized through this whole process is that depression and anxiety clouds my mind so much that I have a difficult time thinking clearly and hearing what my gut it trying to tell me. I feel that the answers I seek are within me but I can’t hear them so I seek answers from everyone around me. But having talked to so many of my family & friends has only made me more confused as, of course, their opinions differ. I’m afraid in trying to make things clearer in my mind all I’ve done is put up more of a barricade between me and the answers I seek. Do you have any advice on how to block out all the noise so I can hear myself think?

    #180909
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kodi:

    To think effectively, you have to be calm. Anxiety, distress is like fog in the brain and you can’t see through the fog. You ask people and their answers just add to the fog. So calm is the only way to dissipate the fog and see clearly.

    Possibilities to get that calm, other then changing/ increasing medications, exercising, meditating, mindfulness etc.:

    Stop considering changing this job. Accept this job as your forever job, let it be your… destiny, so to speak. There is a term for it: to radically accept. Accept this job completely, the way it is. No longer resist it. No longer try to escape.

    A story I heard long ago goes something like this: someone who was  in prison was asked: how do you escape? He answered: there is only one way, to stop wanting to escape.

    Try this mindset?

    anita

    #180913
    Kodi
    Participant

    At this point I don’t think I can adopt that mindset. Every time I try to ‘let it go’ and decide to stay or another job opportunity doesn’t work out I’m okay for a couple of days and then my mind/gut starts screaming at me that I need to get out. That I need to take time to take care of myself mentally & physically. I can’t tell if it’s my desire or intuition talking? It’s been telling me the same thing for so long. I try to let it go but it won’t let go of me. I want to follow my gut and trust that it will lead me but I don’t know where the message is coming from.

     

    #180915
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kodi:

    I am trying to understand: you wrote in the post before last that it will add  more stress to you if  you quit this job. Keeping this job is involved with a distress of the kind  that is “screaming at” you that you “need  to get out”-

    if the distress you are expecting to experience if you quit this job is greater than this screaming, what is its nature… how bad do you expect it to be?

    anita

    #180919
    Kodi
    Participant

    I’m sorry, my posts are confusing because I’m confused. Bottom line is I need to make a decision that is right for me (mentally, physically & emotionally), financially for my family AND for my husband’s well being. I’m putting so much pressure on myself to figure out a scenario where we’re all happy and less stressed. If I stay in my current job, I’m an emotional wreck but I spare my husband and we are good financially. If I quit my job, it’s quite possible that it would put a lot of stress on my husband and therefore me. I feel like I’m swinging on a pendulum between anxiety & depression and no matter what I do (meditation, yoga, tapping, etc) I can’t shut my mind off. I’m driving myself crazy and something has to give.

    #180925
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kodi:

    Did you explain this to your husband like you explained it here? As I read  how badly  you feel in this job, and have felt so badly about it for such a long time, I feel like saying to you: quit the job! So that you get a relief from your misery.

    Didn’t your husband express to you my  kind of sentiment… didn’t he get distressed enough seeing you distressed, and so, wanting for you to stop suffering by quitting the job?

    anita

    #181311
    Therlie
    Participant

    Dear Kodi,

    I think you should go on a journey.

    1. You guts tell you, you don’t want this job. Follow your guts because life is too short to be unhappy. Try more actively to find other work, so you don’t have to quit your job before you found something new – so no needto be anxious-.

    2. At the same time, go on a spiritual journey. You need to tackle the problem from the roots, from within. Otherwise you will always be anxious with a low self-esteem. Maybe even do this together with your husband.. find some soothing and peace in your lives. Find the light in the dark places. You could do this multiple ways: talking & dreaming together focussing on what you DO what, journalling, meditation, yoga (Yoga with Adriene is a great Youtubehannel with very nice home yoga sequences), try to spend more time in nature and see the bigger picture, do something completely different; like one day a week be a volunteer at a refugee center or visiting an old person (it may help to shift your perspective, because sometimes we need to stop thinking and we just need some new insight which we can find in the strangest places), also keep a gratitude journal (write something, doesnt matter how small, that you are grateful for every day),as it also helps to change your perspective. Or do something else that feels good for you.

    These two journey’s will supplement eachother, and will lead to a high quality job search, and will give you more peace. It is not a one day journey so, so bear with it. Try to find what feels good for you. And please: ”Make decisions that reflect your hopes, not your fears”.

    I hope this was helpful.

    Good luck and sending love

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by Therlie.
    #181581
    Kodi
    Participant

    Thank you for your kind thoughts Anita and Therlie. You were both helpful! Kodi <3

    #181587
    anita
    Participant

    You are welcome, Kodi.

    anita

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