Life is Just Plain Weird. Oh, and I Quit My Job Today

Quitting a job is absolutely bizarre. Today is my last day at my current company. In two weeks, I’ll start a new role at a new company, where I’ll learn new things and make new friends and start a new routine. But over the last week or two, things have been…weird. Because I knew I was done. But I was still getting stuff done. It’s a very surreal experience. I could say it twenty different ways and it wouldn’t feel normal.

Quitting your job is weird and awkward, and the ceremonious way in which we do everything makes it even weirder.

I’ve quit jobs before. I’ve sent e-mails to bar managers and called in to restaurant managers, but typically, I don’t just leave a job for something better. It’s never been my MO. I’ve been laid off and left jobs when they weren’t right for me, but I promised myself I’d never quit a job without a better job, this time. And so I waited it out. Until I could find a place that could offer me a new home. A place to grow. Which I did, and I’m SO excited about. But that doesn’t make leaving this job any less weird. These are just a few of the weird things I kept thinking about over the last week that make quitting a job the right way a little strange.

Two Weeks Notice

First, you’re advised to give notice. And not just like, hey tomorrow’s my last day. Instead, the norm is to offer 2 weeks of your time after you know you’re donezo. When a job lets you go, you’re out that day. Why does this tradition exist? During those two weeks, do you tell people you’re leaving? Do you keep quiet and get as much work done as you can? I fell somewhere in the middle and was wigged out the entire time. I’m proud as fuck I was able to see a contract through to completion and launched before my last day, but what if I hadn’t finished it? Would I have been expected to continue working long after my last day to finish it? Would I have left it to someone else who wasn’t in on the rest of the contract process? Fucking weird, right?

Exit Interviews

I always thought I’d leave angry with a big ole bone to pick with HR. I’d been preparing for my exit interview since I started. I documented every instance of ridiculous, crazy, and horrible things. But when push came to shove, I didn’t have anything to say. Sure there were times I was so angry I threatened to quit.  But I got a lot out of my job. I learned a ton. I explained my reasons to my boss, but mostly it was just the right time for me. I have a new job lined up that I’m so incredibly excited about, and I’m not leaving my current job on bad terms. I’ve made my peace.

Saying Goodbye

I’ve bid farewell to many a co worker in my almost 3 years with the company.  Several times, I’ve shed a few tears. Not just because everything makes me cry…but because I was genuinely sad to see people go. Now it’s my turn to go, and I’m genuinely sad to say goodbye to the people I’ve come to know here. That doesn’t make it any less awkward. I started telling some people last week that I had put in my notice, and others I didn’t tell until yesterday. Others still, I didn’t tell until I sent my last e-mail. It’s just weird. Because I didn’t want to be in the middle of contract negotiations and then tell people I’m leaving. I didn’t want to be working on a project and let people think it was going to slip between my fingers. I wanted to finish what I started and get it done properly without a thousand questions as to why…but then I felt guilty not telling them until now.

But my last day is here, and I’m not sad or angry or joyful. I just feel weird. Adulting is hard.

Have you ever quit a job for something new and exciting? What is the strangest thing about quitting a job? What other weird traditions do we stand by that should maybe be eliminated?

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Unemployment is a lot like Being Single

Several years ago, I spent about six months unemployed. Collecting unemployment from the state of Illinois is something of a joke, in my opinion. I know a lot of people who collect and don’t do a damn thing to find a job. I even had a recruiter ask me if I was collecting, and if I would still be interested in part time or freelance work if it would mess up the unemployment check. Really? I thought that the point was to REEMPLOY yourself!

Of course, as someone who spent many hours a day, five days a week, for six months searching, I’m a little jaded. I had to go to a state mandated “re-employment” workshop, something that people who had been collecting UI for years had never been to…and still, no full-time employment for Chrissy.

I’ve also had my fair share of singleton experiences. I spent the better portion of my adult life single and made the rounds of dating–online and otherwise.

So having spent a lot of time job hunting, and a lot of time dating…I realized that job hunting is a lot like dating. More specifically, job hunting is a lot like online dating.

Online dating and job hunting

How to find a job…or how to find a date

Step one
Build your online profile. You need to make yourself marketable to your target audience. Whether it’s a future boss or a future boyfriend, you need to know what they want and give yourself the appearance that you have it. The more you write, the more interesting (or boring) you become. You’ve got to have a perfectly written cover letter or dating profile that stands out in a crowd of other single or unemployed persons. Not only that, it has to stand out to the particular type of person or company that you’re trying to snag.

Step two
Search. Search for the forever employer. Search for the forever boyfriend or girlfriend. Search for a right-now date or the right-now job. You’ve got your information posted for them to find you; now, you have to try to find them. With a plethora of websites and apps available for you to find your perfect match, you can spend hours filling out forms with all of your information, writing about yourself, and so much more. This step is where desperation can often come into play. Whether you’re sending out 500 job applications on CareerBuilder, or sending messages to 500 different people on Match.com, you’ve got to make sure to limit the sound of despondency in your tone. Keep it confident. Simple.

Step three
Make contact. Once you’ve found a potential match, you’ve got to get in touch with them in the hopes that they will respond to your inquiry. If they’ve found you first, you need to take it from virtual communication to real communication. Email, phone, and then in-person communication. It’s a process

Step four
The first date or the interview. From the pre-meeting anxiety to the sigh of relief upon its completion, these two are incredibly similar. You make yourself look your absolute best–a best that you almost never look in real life. A brand new outfit, coiffed tresses, flawless make-up, and whatever else you can think of. You’re showcasing a part of yourself that almost never makes it out into the real world. Because ain’t nobody got time for that every day.

Step five
Wait. Hope they call. Whether it’s the second interview or the second date, you can only wait for them to make the decision that they’ll call. Of course, you can be proactive and make the first move, but even then, it’s always a waiting game. Are they going to answer? Are they going to turn down your request for a second date or meeting?

Basically, you’re trying to fit personalities into a functional relationship that will become mutually beneficial. Dating or job-hunting–the questions are all the same. Are you personable? Are you a hard-worker? Are you intelligent? Can you keep up? Do you mesh well together?

Eventually, you’ll find the right one at the right time, and things, hopefully, work out well.

Have you ever been unemployed? What comparisons would you make about dating and job hunting?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!