Startup Stories: Why I Happily Left Corporate America and 6 Figures on the Table

For those of you out there who are contemplating leaving your day job, here’s how I finally decided to skip the stable 6-figure salary for the unpredictable, yet...

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2. Your piggy bank is full.

If you’re going to quit your day job, it’s important to put yourself in the best possible financial position. Once you’ve decided to quit, begin saving like your life depends on it! (It will!) Skip the lattes, for some homemade coffee in a travel mug. Skip the $10 lunches for a PB&J or last night’s leftovers. The more you’re able to save, the better. Set a goal and be realistic. Make sure to include: Monthly bills, living expenses, and some cash to invest in your new business.

For years I thought to myself, “Once I save 6 months worth of expenses, plus a cushion to live and invest in a company of my own, I’m out of here!” When I surprised myself and saved over a year worth of expenses, I knew it was time. Even if you get to that magic number, it may still not feel like enough. Remember, it won’t ever feel as stable as a salary. If it’s enough to cover your expenses, and you feel relatively safe, you should go for it.

3. Your passion has shifted.

You’re no longer passionate about your work and spend most of your time day-dreaming (or better yet, researching) your new business idea. Eventually others around your office, bosses and colleagues alike, will start to notice your absentee mind. Once you’ve come to a point where you are no longer giving it your all, and you feel like you’re floating through the day, consider taking the plunge into entrepreneurship.

My career had become a job to me. Things that I would have never done in the past (e.g. come in late, not volunteer for opportunities) had become the norm. It seemed I was the only one who knew I wasn’t motivated, though I knew it was only a matter of time before others found me out. I grew tired of spending twelve hours a day working at something I wasn’t passionate about. I knew my time would be better spent working on something that was my own.

No Longer Holding Myself Back

At the end of the day, I realized I was the only one holding myself back. Sure, people may question your decision. It’s only natural to wonder why someone would leave a successful career for the unknown. But, in the end, it’s your decision. It’s been three weeks now, and I haven’t looked back. Of course I know this will be the most challenging journey I’ve ever been on in my life, but so what!?

What’s life without a few character-building bumps in the road!


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Photo Credit: Mango

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