Escape the 9 to 5 life and make the leap to happy 24/7 in 5 stages
I want to talk about the shifts that occur when you finally decide to escape the 9 to 5 life.
It has to happen in stages, and I want to take you through all of them to save you from staying in a nightmare for too long.
So many of my clients have wanted to escape the 9 to 5 life.
But they don’t really know what they want to do.
Some know what they want but don’t know how to get it.
Some know what they want and already have a good base, but still don’t take the leap.
During an initial call with a new client she was describing her story and about half way through her telling me how her job is making her physically ill, she still stayed as she needs money to live.
As if this job was the only way she would ever make an income.
She sees others in her company leave which means more work for her, but still works her hardest because she is good at her job
She wants 3 months pay, and something regular to become her income so of course she can’t leave until all of this is settled.
There were so many other logical excuses too, but the point I want to make here is that we all have these serious, very real limiting beliefs, and these are built by many years of experiences, stories shared with us, and ways of being ingrained in our systems.
But in reality you will never really know what you need, until you take the leap and escape the 9 to 5 life.
Yes money is often a real issue, but you forget what it was like to be in serious debt or back when you were on a much lesser salary, or that you now spend money more on habits like your morning coffee, and yoga class then you did before.
With every new direction there is a learning curve, and if you are unhappy or have become dissatisfied where you are, there’s a lot that will make you feel more uncomfortable than you already are.
Stage one: Mild annoyance
So this is the worst because this means you haven’t taken a step back in a while. Which is extremely important.
But like many people in a full time 9 to 5, it’s not really that easy to walk away from what you are doing. And with certain roles there are periods of time in the year that are not so good either.
What I want to get you thinking about more, is how your day makes you feel currently.
When you started you felt completely differently to today, so what is the difference and what has created the difference.
Noticing the changes, and what has created those changes, help identify the parts of your 9 to 5 that are unfulfilling.
But also will highlight what you have grown to accept from others, in your role, in your company.
I remember looking around and realising, I’m spending half my wages on just getting into London!
Like what the actually f**k!!
Why would anyone do that to themselves when their job is not the one.
Stage two: What are you giving up to be in your 9 to 5 life?
Time was one of my main pain points when I realised I was in a job not a career.
The calculations I made in my head of:
- When the latest time I would have to wake up,
- Shower (maybe not wash my hair)
- No breakfast
- How fast can I really drive to the station
- How quickly can i park
- What time to I have to get to the station to get a decent spot
- When’s the last train I can get to get to work on time?
Sooooooo many more thoughts.
And I would do this every single day!
This is what I used to focus on, how much time I wasted just getting to and from my 9 to 5. I made it such a big deal, and made the start of my day so much more of a struggle.
I had no idea how the negative mindset was affecting my general mood, and the mood of the people around me, but also how it was affecting me psychologically.
As if you only see bad things, and are constantly trying to trick the system, you will never see the opportunities that are in front of you.
When you associate your work with something you dislike doing, you automatically dislike work, and then it gets bigger, you begin to dislike the people, the tasks you have to do, and then yourself.
All of this can be avoided, when you reframe your mindset towards everything.
For me, I needed to realise that my time was not being wasted, but I was wasting it.
So I began my love affair with Audible.
I would listen to books in and out of work, and it made the biggest difference, as the books I was reading (listening) were all about personal development, psychology and some non fiction stuff too. Lol
But it also inspired me, made me lighter, less angry and more accepting with my life.
Another mindset switch I share with my clients is to reframe hating your job, to understanding what your job provides you.
So financially, in terms of your network, understanding what someone in the position above you had to do, if that’s the direction you want to go in, you have access to so much more than you realise with a positive mindset.
So whichever thing resonates with you the most, realise it can only benefit you, when you see it as a benefit.
Stage three: You are not good enough to get another 9 to 5 role.
Ohhhh myyy gosshhh!!
The amount of times I hear this is maddening.
You got the job, you have been doing the role for some time, and you still feel like you cannot do the job somewhere else.
Don’t get me wrong, this was also one of my reasons for not leaving when I wanted to.
I had to develop this habit of every time I would do a task, I would assess what it was that made me able to do it.
Quick problem solving, customer care, knowing who’s who, understanding reports, being able to create reports, and so on.
You are a very skillful human, the problem is your fears are screaming at you, because the thought of stepping out of your comfort zone terrifies you.
Guess what, it always will. There will always be a part of you that will be scared of going to the next level, but with mindset coaching, you learn to understand your fear more, and how to act without letting fear stop you in your tracks.
Your mind can play tricks on you all the time. It knows what is safe and what is different, but also what is not known and what is.
So escaping the 9 to 5 life is always going to be a massive struggle if you do not work on your mindset.
Stage Four: The logical mind wins
Like I was saying at the beginning, your brain works well when you know what is what. You are familiar with your life, and what is happening and the people that are in it and so on.
So you think things through.
You realise you need this amount of money, and you need this amount of time in your day and so on.
But in reality you can change all of this.
You can make money any way, it’s always possible. I know someone who makes money managing a dog influencer.
Whatever your passions may be they will always win, because you want to spend your time, money and energy on them.
But escaping your safe 9 to 5 to make space for that hobby is a no no.
How would you even begin, where would you start, there would be so much to learn, you’d have to start from scratch. And so many other negative ideas come into your mind.
Logically this is all true.
But it is also the reason that your 9 to 5 is making you unhappy!
That’s the realisation people tend to miss, as it’s such a logical need.
Of course you can, you need to earn what you currently do, and one of the things that is much less important than paying your bills, is your own happiness.
Sadly this is true for so many people, and it’s why next week is going to be all about how you can create more space for you in your life.
But for now, if this is you, and you know why you can’t leave your 9 to 5 and you know that there are no jobs out there, and that there is nothing for you, especially not in your dream field, then at least you can take comfort in this logical belief.
In reality I support women who used to think exactly this way, find jobs in their dream field and set themselves up in such a way, then don’t negotiate with themselves about the amount of effort they need to make in life.
Stage Five: the 9 to 5 life is all too much now
You know you have to escape the 9 to 5 life, you cannot take it any more. All you talk about is how much you hate your job, you hate the people you work with, the job you do is soooo pointless, and you cannot stop thinking about how much you hate your job.
You get to your breaking point, you’re not fully at the break down stage yet, but you know what you are doing, but you are almost there.
You know this is not a way to live, or work, and there is nothing you can do about it.
At this stage people naturally fall into burnout, because they don’t know how much longer they can go on for, but they cant simply stop so they head forward, but inevitably end up in burn out.
But there is something you can do when you are at this stage.
See how ill you are. I remember one of the country managers I used to work for was always ill.
She would never eat, and live off of coffee and cigarettes. But she was the smartest, and most knowledgeable about our clients, so everyone would go to her, and ask for her support.
She was lovely so of course would say yes, any way she could. But this led to more work, and more work, so one of her holidays she took to Bali.
She came back from her three week break a completely different person. She realised that she could no longer pick up where she left off, as her work just piled up, and she couldn’t get back into the flow.
But her flow before, was to start at 8 and finish at 8 in the office, not a healthy balance at all.
There was so much pressure that she had completely let go of whilst she was on holiday that she didn’t realise how much, until she came back.
That was her eye opening moment.
She knew she couldn’t do this any more. But that didn’t mean her work load changed, or her working hours changed.
Because of her need to keep her job, and show up and live the life she was accustomed to she had to keep going, her burnout came a month after she came back.
And it took her two years to recover.
You see the damage that we are doing to ourselves regularly is easy to get used to because we are constantly doing it.
But that moment you stop, you realise how stressed, and tense, and angry and negative you’ve been.
You suddenly realise that is not who I want to be, and now are to the point of a break that you have no energy to do anything else.
Before you ever get to this point, you have to stop. Taking that three week holiday was the best thing she could have ever done for herself.
In the book Clockwork by Mike Michalowicz he highly recommends a four week holiday. This is both something to work towards, and something to own.
We all need breaks, but real ones, not weekend getaways, or spa days, but real breaks.
Where we get back to being ourselves, and can think straight, and can really relax.
I cannot tell you how many people do not notice the signs that are screaming at them to slow down.
But there are so many ways of creating a better life where you get to be yourself, work at your own pace, and have a month off, if that’s something you need.
I hope these tools have helped you see things a little differently.
If you need any more advice or want to discuss any of these stages of escaping the 9 to 5 life in further detail, book a call with me now.
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