Every April Fool’s Day I am reminded of a brave moment in my mid-20’s when I quit my job and changed my life. I loved the job but not my boss. I had been one of the chosen young executive trainees, two promotions later, that the company had hoped would grow into leadership.
For months I plotted and planned trying to figure a way out of working with my boss – Should I move to a different department? Perhaps take a similar job in another company? Change roles completely? – Anything to get away from my boss. My boss and the environment she created was making me hate my life. I scheduled vacations to try to find a job closer to where I had grown up but my boss cancelled all of my time off.
April Fool’s Day became the day I decided that I’d leave no matter what. I had no job to go to but could no longer tolerate her abuse. My closing note was, “If you hit me over the head with a baseball bat every morning, it would do less damage than what you do to me.”
I took the fool’s leap, quit my job, packed my apartment and moved with no plan but to get away. It was so out of character to my responsible, stick it out no matter what, self. I had always excelled, especially with my people skills, and could get along with almost anyone….but not her. I found out later that my replacement in that position had suffered a nervous breakdown.
April Fool’s Day is a career celebration day for me every year. It reminds me to make brave choices that support who I am and who I can be. Looking back, I am grateful to have made the choices I have made. I have lived a full life and have loved my work. Since then, I have been quick to course correct when my work is out of alignment with who I am.
Today reminds me to be brave and take a leap for the path that is calling. What felt like a Fool’s Journey was a great lesson in knowing that no job is worth losing your dignity as a human being.
Happy April Fool’s Day – Happy Career Bravery Day!!!
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