That’s right folks… I did it – I quit my job to be a full-time solopreneur. I am so excited (and nervous, exhilarated, happy, determined) and so much more! There must be something in the water, as I’ve seen a few people venturing out on their own recently, including some of my fav peeps Suba over at Wealth Informatics; Emily at Authentically Social; and Beatriz at Breakthru Life.
Leaving my job was surprisingly one of the easiest decisions I’ve ever made. Please don’t groan and roll your eyes – it’s not that easy of a decision for everyone and most people agonize over it for ages (here’s one of my favorite posts about this over at Jenny Blake’s Life After College blog). It was easy for me because I planned for it – I have been saving money for some time to help cushion the big exit; I have been earning income in my side hustle; and I had a planned path of where I was going. The clincher for me though, was when I was frustrated with the limitations my day-job was putting on my side hustle. It was holding me back, coupled with a dread of having to show up there every day, and I knew that it was time to peace out.
So to address all of your burning quitting questions…
Q1: How did you know you had enough money saved?
A1: This is something I struggled with the most. I don’t think you can ever have “enough” money saved when you venture out on your own, but I challenged myself to be disciplined about what I needed versus what I wanted. I did a budget to figure out exactly where and how I spend my money, and then calculated how much money I would need available to cover my absolute expenses. I then multiplied that by six months (this was the cushion I determined was best for me), and saved it up! One of the best financial bloggers out there J Money, would probably scream at me for this, but I also did a “worst case scenario” situation where I looked at which expenses could be put on an interest free credit card, should I need additional cash flow in the future.
Side note: I also had an income goal before I quit. I wanted to have a specific number of clients and a set income prior to me quitting. This was HARD, I’m not known for my patience, but it absolutely has helped eliminate some of the fear about never making a dime.
Q2: What are you going to do about health insurance?
A2: I am honestly surprised at how often this has been asked. Health insurance is not that difficult to get – honestly. I wasn’t even on the company’s plan until recently, as I had a less expensive and more comprehensive plan through eHealth Insurance. That being said, I am waiting to see all of the details behind COBRA and will make the determination based on that – going on COBRA or purchasing an individual plan. I am lucky in that I do not need a family plan, so this is not going to be the huge expense it could be for others, but this was not a huge factor in my decision.
Q3: How are you going to spend your day?
A3: This is my favorite question! My dad even jokes that I’m retiring… I’m not. In fact, I will be working a lot more than I was before. My days will be spent coaching clients, helping people with their resume packages/materials, some HR corporate consulting, speaking engagements, and writing. I’ll be a busy gal – promise. I am currently accepting new clients – so if you’re interested, please drop me a line!
Q4: How are people reacting?
A4: Truth moment here – when I quit my job the first time around, this was one of the hardest things I encountered and no one warned me! People typically fell into one of two camps: super excited, if not somewhat jealous; or completely resistant, and somewhat nasty. I’ll be covering this in-depth here, but I wanted to put that out there!
This time around, I haven’t yet encountered many naysayers. YAY! Most people are excited for me, or try to give me advice about how to be cautious. I am so confident in where I am going, that perhaps my perspective is changing the way others are responding. Either way, I know how to answer “What do you do for a living?” question when I am out and about. That’s my best advice for now – know the answer to that question… and I have turned it into a game, counting how many times I’m asked that each day – the number is higher than you would ever imagine.
Q5: What’s your back-up plan?
A5: This question makes me cringe, but it’s an honest question – so here’s my answer. My plan is to make THIS WORK. I set aggressive goals to reach a certain number of clients and income prior to leaving my job, to help reassure me that it WILL work. Ok, that being said – I don’t have a safety net so to speak… I don’t have the option of moving in with my parents if this doesn’t work out; I don’t have a ton of assets I can sell off to cover this; I’m not independently wealthy nor do I have a second income in my household. My back-up plan consists of continuing to work at this, to make it work – if that means I have to go back to a corporate job for some time while I work out the kinks, so be it. I’m opposed to doing everything I can possibly do to MAKE THIS WORK – because I believe in what I am helping others accomplish, so I am open to any speed bumps that are thrown my way!
Have additional burning quitting questions? Let me know – I’d be more than happy to address them! Melissa at LoosenYourWhiteCollar dot com.