Taking a risk and leaving a high-paying corporate job behind

If you’re working in a corporate environment with a desire to quit and pursue your dreams, you’re probably all too familiar of the feelings of hopelessness and being trapped. On one hand, the thought of having to deal with one more day of uninspiring projects, stress, and political nonsense has nearly pushed you to the breaking point. On the other hand, you are also likely enjoying a dependable weekly paycheck with generous health care and retirement benefits.

At what point do you say enough is enough and quit? There’s no easy answer for that, because everyone’s situation is different. For some, the need the for financial security outweighs the desire to quit. For others, the amount of frustration and stress outweighs any financial compensation that a full time job could offer. Most are stuck exactly in the middle, internally debating over and over the pros and cons of each option.

Pros and cons of quitting a high-paying corporate job:

Pros:

  • Humans were not made to sit in cubicles all day
  • Doing uninspiring and overall meaningless work is toxic to the soul
  • When your life is over – will you be happier with yourself if you sat in a cube for 35 years or took a chance and pursued your dreams instead?

Cons:

  • A dependable paycheck sure is nice
  • It’s nice to be able to buy fun toys (or take nice vacations) every now and then – sometimes that’s easier to do with the steady paycheck of a 9-5 job.
  • Retirement savings will continue to grow and grow the longer you stay

If you just can’t take it anymore, do yourself a favor and quit. Even if you fall flat on your face and end up broke and homeless in two months, you’ll have one heck of a good story to tell later in life. And chances are you’ll still be happier than if you were still working that job.

But for those who are feeling especially trapped, there is one really great way to transition from corporate life to entrepreneurial life without pulling the plug on your comfy corporate benefits all at once:

Start working an online part time job to generate side income

There’s no reason why you can’t keep your current job and start trying to build an online business on the side in your spare time. Having an established part-time business in place before you quit your full time job will make the transition much easier and will reduce the second-guessing of your decision that will inevitably come the days after you quit.

Even if you think you are too busy to start an online business, you should know that it doesn’t take much time to become successful. Do something you love to do (my list of great online part time jobs can help you decide if you’re not sure what to do), and spend just an hour a day working on it. Everyone has an hour to spare – be it a lunch hour, 30 minutes before and after work, or late at night after you put the kids to bed. You need to make the time for it if you are serious about making a change in your life and leaving the golden handcuffs of that corporate job behind.

Deep inside, everyone is jealous of the coworker who stuns the entire office with their resignation announcement to pursue their dreams. It’s easy to be that person if you have an online part time job set up and running before you quit, even if it’s something you don’t plan on making a full time living from. If that’s the case, use it as a safety net of sorts to provide some income as you pursue your next big thing. Otherwise, take advantage of the fact that it’s already an established business in place that you can turn into something huge now that you’ve got the time to work on it full time.

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