Decisions, decisions, decisions. Change can be so hard, but sometimes it truly is for the best. Late last year I found myself in a place I never thought I would be. I was faced with some life changing decisions regarding my career, health and happiness.
The not so good times…
The organization I had been working with full time for a couple of years full time (where I had also worked for years part-time while I went to Uni) was again doing mass layoffs. I made it through the first 2 rounds of layoffs. I was obviously relieved to still have a job but survivors guilt is a real. In October, the 3rd round hit. In the end, my team was now less than half the size it had originally been. With that I watched people I had known, some for many years have to leave. It was at that time the survivor’s guilt hit an all-time high. People with children and families to support were now without jobs and income. So there I was, expected to do my job, as if nothing had happened.
Anyone who has been through layoffs like these knows that organizations may cut your team but the expectation is to keep producing the same quantity and quality of work. This led me to feel like I had to work extremely long hours to complete everything by the deadlines. Let’s just say, without going into too much detail (maybe I will post about it later), I went into stress overdrive. I became extremely forgetful, I couldn’t sleep and I ended up having anxiety attacks. I did end up taking some time off to recuperate and figure out coping mechanisms, but this was the final straw for me.
Doing what I had to do…
I had been looking at changing jobs for over a year at this point. I really wanted to continue to advance my career and was looking for a job one step above my current role. Nothing I applied for led to an interview, except for one instance, and right after that interview I knew it was not the place for me. Jumping to a place I was unsure about from a place that was stressful, but I knew so well, is a very nerve wracking concept. However, once I returned to work again, being in that high stress environment, I made the ultimate decision to get out. I began apply for jobs in earnest, using my connections and the help of recruiters.
Finally, some good news!
This time I was lucky. I ended up receiving two job offers in the same day. Both were a promotion, which I knew I had earned, but there were significant differences in both the compensation and the industries. One organization was going to have a much less steep learning curve, good compensation but an business I had heard had had its own trials similar to where I was leaving over the last couple of years. On the other hand, the other organization offered me what I hoped was a safe environment after what I had gone through, but with smaller compensation and a huge learning curve.
So how do I make decisions? Annoyingly to most people around me, I talk about it repeatedly, for hours on end, to everyone I can find. I ask for advice and input from anyone and everyone. I know for some people this would not help them, but I look for that devil’s advocate to show me the other side and perspective of my options. In the end, I do always come to a decision (and there will always be moments of reflection where perhaps the decision was not the best). However, I have ended up in a job where I now feel calm, supported and welcome.
Anyone else made some big changes recently for your career? How did you make the decision? Leave me a note in the comments.