It’s going to seem like just yesterday that I told you I took a part-time job, but that’s because this is a blog and I haven’t been writing on it for that long. I actually took the job back at the end of August. Or maybe it was the beginning of September… Either way, it was months ago.
I was excited.
I enjoyed the work.
I enjoyed the people I was meeting.
But what I didn’t enjoy was the stress it caused in my life and in the lives of my family members.
And that is why I just recently left my job.
Life is full of choices. We all have to make them. Some choices are easy, and some are quite difficult.
Leaving my job was difficult.
I didn’t want to disappoint anyone.
I didn’t want to be seen as a quitter.
I didn’t want to appear to be overly emotional or to be an excuse maker.
It was difficult because I was worried about how I would look to others.
You know, it wasn’t until writing that last sentence that I even realized how huge of an impact other people’s opinions were having on my life (or at least what I imagined their opinions were). I should have left my job back in November when I first started realizing it was not a great fit for my life and my family, but I stayed.
I stayed and I stressed.
I stayed and I worried.
I stayed and I knew I shouldn’t have… because I was concerned with what others would think.
Wow, who knew my blog would give me that revelation!
Anyways… that concern over the perceived opinions of others left me, and I quit.
I’ve been a homeschool mom for over ten years now. Throughout that time, I’ve gotten tired and I’ve gotten cranky. But one thing I’d never experienced was complete and total burnout. Our homeschool schedule is designed so that we school for five weeks and then take one week off. We do this all school year in order to keep everyone relaxed and happy. But with the job, I was just so tired.
When you work as a fitness coach, you end up exercising a lot. I was essentially spending three hours each evening exercising. It was exhausting. My body was tired. My brain was tired. And I was so irritable! The worst part, I had lost steam as a teacher. I found myself not giving my kids the best version of me, and their education started suffering. I realized that I was experiencing total burnout, but I attempted to keep going… and between my exhaustion and all around crabbiness, well… I was losing it.
On top of homeschool burnout, my son started to act out. He was becoming angry and retreating into a dark space. It was becoming very apparent that on the weekends when I was home, he would be fine; but during the week, he’d go dark. As a special needs mom, I really feel it is my first job to care for my kids. Watching him struggle was not ok, and I let it go too long.
And then there was the lack of time with my husband. Seeing him for only about an hour a day other than weekends is just not ok with either of us. The toll of our lack of connection was becoming incredibly apparent.
Add it all up, and by the time I went in to my employer to quit… I was a mess!
I don’t expect many people out there to understand this. We live in a world where chasing money and job success is practically worshipped. My quitting work due to family needs is countercultural.
But you know what? It’s only been a few days and things are already improving.
Moods are improving.
Attitudes are improving.
And the happiness level in my house is high.
I did what I needed to do. I made the priority to take care of what matters most. And in the end, minimalism and intentional living – the philosophies I’ve adopted – are all about what matters most.