10 Reasons You Need to Quit Your Job

quit your job

I fell straight down and broke both my legs right in the middle of the street. Or strained them. Or something. Because I couldn’t walk for a week afterwards. I was walking on Wall Street with two partners in the private equity firm I had just become a partner at earlier that week.  This was fairly recently. Like in the past two years. I hadn’t stumbled over anything. Just fell to the ground in front of everyone.

“You ok?” everyone asked. I pretended to not limp. Later that night I couldn’t walk. A few days later I showed back up at the firm for a meeting I had set up. I wanted to do business with a Brazilian private equity firm. Brazil has two harvests I learned in the meeting. Sounded like a place I wanted to do business. But I got bored. “Excuse me,” I said. And I walked out of the meeting. Out of the office. 67 floors down. Subway to Grand Central. Train up the Hudson Valley.

I never went back to the office. “Where are you?” the head partner wrote me. Some phone calls appeared on my cell. “Come back,” said the next email. “There’s still a place for you here,” said the next email two weeks later. I never responded to anything. They might still have my name on the door.

I have some bad habits.


I couldn’t get out of bed in the morning. It was summer. I lived in Hell’s Kitchen. For awhile, HBO was the best job ever. I used to skip to work every day. But I couldn’t get out of bed. And I had a business on the side that was growing. But I was afraid to jump into the abyss and just do my business fulltime. HBO was HBO. I was afraid nobody would return my calls if I left HBO. And I was right. Startup world was the abyss. The work at HBO was monotonous, draining, I hated the politics. I had to go in though. There were meetings.  Who was going to make the website for “Sex and the City”?

But I couldn’t get out of bed in the morning.


I was afraid to go into the office. There were too many people I didn’t want to run into. I would do videos outside every morning in front of the New York Stock Exchange. But I refused to go up into the office for meetings. People still stop me on the street, “I used to love those videos. Where are you now?” Even though I write for a million other places. I learned a lot working with Jim Cramer.

But there were too many people I didn’t want to run into.

One day, Dave Morrow (R.I.P.) called me and said, “you have to come into the office. We have to talk.”

I said, “lets meet outside where you usually do your cigarette breaks.” I couldn’t come into the office.

“No,” he said. “You have to come in.”

I had a deal with thestreet after I sold Stockpickr to them. But two years in they wanted to change the deal. I went into the office and was met with Dave and the woman from HR. They offered me half salary and I had to show up at the office 40 hours a week.

I’m a skilled negotiatior. So I counter-offered. “I will write for you every day for FREE,” I said, “and I will get zero salary. But I can’t come into the office.” At the time I lived on 15 Broad Street. If you know the geography of Wall Street,  you would know that I lived approximately 40 feet from thestreet.com’s offices at 14 Wall Street.

They said, “no”.

Fund of funds.

I ran a fund of hedge funds. We were invested in 12 different hedge funds. This was 2006. Several of those funds have since settled with the SEC. But we were no longer invested in them by then.

A major bank wanted to buy our fund of funds. They made a great offer: 10% of our assets. Typically a company like ours goes for 2% of assets. It was millions. We flew out to California to meet them. They flew out to NYC to meet us. We got the official legal document that was the deal.  They wanted me to sign a six year employment agreement. My business partner said we can’t do this deal. My lawyer said, “this is indentured servitude.”

We didn’t respond to the offer. They called me several times. “We are willing to negotiate,” the CEO of the bank said, “if there’s a problem.” But they had no idea what the problem was. Because I never responded to them. I responded to their facebook friend requests. We’re all “friends” now although we’ve never spoken again. And we shut the fund of funds down.


I was trading for several hedge funds. But about once a month I would get so stressed I wouldn’t be able to sleep and I would feel all the blood going through my body. I’d be up at three in the morning checking futures. I’d never sleep. Once a month my partner and I were convinced we were going to stop trading and make an informercial for “diet pills”.

We figured out how to manufacture them cheap, how to video the informercial, how to air it late at night. We were going to do it. But we kept trading. And once a month…repeat. We returned the money. Nobody wanted the money back. We were doing great for them. But we returned it all and never spoke to anyone again.


I had a job at Carnegie Mellon’s Center for Machine Translation. Software I wrote helped take Caterpillar tractor manuals and translate them from English to German and ten other languages. One day I left early. I wanted to hang out with a girl. The next day the boss came into my office and, with the door open and in front of people, proceeded to yell at me. But not just yell at me. He was yelling questions. You know those sorts of questions. A yell plus a question you can’t answer like, “Did you really think that was a good thing to do?” Of course I can’t answer that.

So I quit. And took the job HBO was offering me. But never told him I had a counter-offer. So he would suffer. For months after I left nobody could figure out my programming code. Because I had the ugliest code known to mankind. It was indecipherable.


Xceed bought my first company, Reset. They were going to keep all the brands separate but then they combined them and moved us all into one big building. I had an office. I was a “senior vice president” along with about 40 other people. But Xceed had acquired too many companies. Everyone was gossiping all day long about everyone else. I stopped going into the office. I started looking for other things to do. I finally told them I was quitting and they threatened to sue me. “The one area where slavery is legal in America is when one company buys another company,” the Chairman of the company told me. So sue me. He has since produced the latest “Superman” movie.

quit your job

10 Signs you need to leave your corporate job:

A)     You can’t wake up. You need 10 extra minutes to get up. Then another 10.

B)      You get physically hurt while on the job for no real reason (subconscious at work)

C)      You don’t feel like returning emails or phone calls. When the number of unreturned emails or calls hits 20, you need to leave.

D)     You are unsure about your compensation (with the private equity firm above my compensation was very unclear)

E)      You are afraid to run into people in the office for no real reason.

F)      You are not creating any additional value for yourself. View yourself as a business. Is the value of “your business” going up. When I was at the fund of funds, the fact that I could only sell my fund of funds if I signed a six year employment agreement, showed me that I had not been creating any additional value in my business.

G)     You are thinking about selling diet pills. Tim Ferris aside, nobody in their right mind should sell diet pills.

H)     Someone yells at you. You’re not a kid. Yelling is abusive. Nobody should ever yell at you. Ever. But that’s a hard habit to break if you are used to people yelling at you.

I)      You think about office politics more than you think about how to do well at your job. Never gossip at work. Ever.

J)     You date a girl at work. One of you needs to leave. Pronto. Else, work, relationships, life, gets ruined. Don’t shit where you eat.

I think 90% of people should quit their jobs right now or do something utterly drastic to shake things up. “What would I do?” people can then ask, “I have responsibilities, mouths to feed, mortgage to pay. You don’t get it.” Yes I do. You throw yourself into the abyss. You get scared. You stay up late at night thinking and thinking and thinking. You feel like the death of emptiness is worse than the slow death of your job. But you’ll figure it out. One by one all of your old colleagues will disappear from your life. They will die.

You’ll still be alive.

Related Posts:

How To Quit Your Job

10 Reasons Why You Have to Quit Your Job This Year

10 More Reasons You Need to Quit Your Job Right Now!

Reasons To Stay At Your Job

As a side story, once I was at the second wedding I ever went to. It was a lesbian wedding, so we had to go out to sea in a boat. I saw this pretty woman on the boat. She started talking to me and I still didn’t recognize her. Finally, she realized I didn’t recognize her and said, “James! Its me, X!” And I remembered the last time I saw her. It was six months earlier. I used to work with her every day. Then she had been fired. She had been ugly then. I mean, hideous. Now she was beautiful and unrecognizable. Six months is a long time when you are free from prison.

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  • Patrick

    Nice article James. I did this….5 years ago left a high tech career, moved to Bend and became a trader. Now what? ; )

  • Great blog. Most of us will just read and remain in awe at your guts while the rest will continue to collapse after gossiping about getting screwed on our paychecks. You write about fear a lot and that fear is powerful enough to keep people right were they are in their miserable lives. Many of us put up with this lifestyle because we are comfortable and secure in this cycle. This is a great list though and it’s all about diving into the unknown. Thanks again, keep sharing.

  • Anonymous

    Excellent post, James.

    Many, many years ago I worked in the textbook dept of a large publisher. One day one of the secretaries was so pissed off about whatever that she started burning the files. Literally. This was in the days of paper and carbon paper. Smoke and flames spurted out of the bank of file cabinets & the office had to be evacuated. They were lucky the whole f*cking building didn’t burn down. I found out later that she got to the H’s before she was discovered & kicked out of the building.

    Meanwhile, all the textbook & author files from A-H were gone forever.

    And, a few weeks later, so was I.

    • That’s a heck of a story, Ruth. What made you leave?

      • Anonymous

        Hi Kamal, One word: boredom.

        Textbooks–and the profs who wrote them–were as tedious as you remember
        them from grade & high school. I escaped to the more lurid–and much more
        lively and interesting–world of paperback books.


  • Anonymous

    “It was a lesbian wedding, so we had to go out to sea in a boat.”

    Of course you did!

    I want your brain.

  • Great article as always.

    Reminds me of a theory I developed while I was in college studying Economics (also known as “math for people who don’t like numbers” or “how to pretend you’ll have a career from your degree”).

    The theory was “Insufficient Immiseration”, people can be very unhappy in their jobs and still stay, at least until they “go postal”… just not unhappy enough to leave.

    With a degree in Econ, I can graph that for you. But don’t expect any numbers on the axes.

  • Anonymous


    So many of us have divorced our minds and bodies that we don’t recognize what our bodies are telling us about our lives. One friend of mine went temporarily blind just as you went temporarily lame.

    There are people in this world who enjoy being on a payroll. I’m married to one of them. These people can’t relate to my aversion to “employment” but some can grow to accept it without judging. I’m forever freelance. No Matter What.

    I wrote about my journey for those interested…http://roadtrip.tamelarich.com/2010/12/31/reverb10-day-31-core-story/

  • mike

    I wonder how you sustain the energy and interest to start on different career paths – chess, computers, investing, writing – knowing in the back of your mind that you’ll lose interest eventually. The problem for me is I have the same “empty” feeling that you have before I put in the hours of work and preparation.

  • Fear is a strong motivator and causes people to do silly thing, like staying at a job where they should have quit many years ago. I see it every day.

    If you’re not adding value, advancing your career, and you’re not happy – it’s time to go.

    • morph2020

      I spent 13 years at what everybody would know as a really, really major oil company. They had adopted the philosophy (from Jack Welch of GE) that they should rank every employee in salary grade each year and fire the bottom 10% each annual ranking period. There were two ways to advance in your rank. First, do something great. Second, make other people in your salary grade look foolish by insulting them or sabotaging their work. The second way is easier. Never mind what that does to cooperation and workplace habitability.Jack Welch, in my opinion, almost by himself destroyed the American middle class. He continues to spread his poison into other companies.

  • Fear is a strong motivator and causes people to do silly thing, like staying a job where they should have quit many years ago. I see it every day.

  • Psychic Chuck

    At many corporations there are just enough incremental payoffs (yearly bonuses, stock option vestings, RSU traunches, retention bonuses) to keep you hanging on in a bad situation just for the next “corporate bone” to be tossed.

    Seems the longer one stays in a bad environment, the harder it is to break away. Thus the phrase, “throw yourself into the abyss” resonates. But this is a tough one for me; I’ve been struggling with this exact issue for several years now.

    But your posts have helped, James, so thank you. At minimum your perspective helps me keep these issues top of mind rather to be buried in the endless drone of day to day corporate work. Fully realized the ideas will help me to one day just stay in bed and not show up :-)

  • Kjp712

    I wake up,make a left,then a quick right straight to the computer.I sit down surrounded by silence completed with a cup of coffee.Then as the brain focuses i realize there are no bosses anywhere to be found.Then I smile as the trading day starts.During the day if the need to talk to someone arises,I pick up the phone to dial.Also I talk to only happy and optimistic people daily leaving the soul draining ones as a distant memory from the past.Makes life more enjoyable.

    • PatD

      throw in walking w/my dogs and friends and you have described my days to a T ….

  • razorsedge

    charlie sheen like, but deep n with meaning,

  • Great post, great perspective. The abyss is way more fun than the office.

  • emptied

    james, just brilliant. At former job, nose bleeds spontaneous. Ten years in a lawyer suit. Nazi boss. Billable minutes, hours, months, and years. There was a self serve blood pressure machine in the building’s lobby. While the staff nurse put me to rest for a halfhour for the bleed to stop, my oasis of being away from the 5th floor, for even that little time, allowed me to drift off. Some island or just away. All behind me now. Breathing not bleeding.

  • anonymous

    Brilliant post, again.. Most of us lack the courage to throw ourselves into the abyss. What if we never come out of it? What If we never get a brilliant idea? I guess the only way of finding it out is jumping into the abyss. :)

  • Good Job! I am taking your advice now.

  • Bobby

    Honestly man I like your blog, but this article makes you seem like one of those guys that has a ton of ability but just can’t put it together. Not wanting to wake up is a sign you should quit your job? Everyone feels that way, you suck it up and keep driving on. For a while it didn’t really make sense to me that a guy who has done everything that you have could still be writing articles about being broke for years, but I understand it better now after reading this.

    • Don

      I agree with you, Bobby. I use to be a “grass is greener” kind of person, always looking for a better job to make me happy. Now I just go to work, stay positive, then come home and do the things I enjoy.

      • morph2020

        This discussion reminds me of a wonderful summary statement I read.

        “Life is just a great big shit sandwich. Every day you have to take another bite, but the more bread you have, the less shit you’ll have to taste.”

        More bread for the sandwich classes.

  • Jeffdsteele

    forgot the last few words

    Ryan Bingham

    P.S. Please go to your desk and pack up your things for the rest of the day. Tomorrow your life continues.”

  • Zubairshams

    I didn’t enjoy your last two articles. But this one, I did. Maybe because 7 out of the 10 things you listed as indications I need to leave my job is happening to me. Now the question is, should I wait for the rest of the 3 … Also, buying a house sucks.

    • Its really interesting. I really liked the prior two and was nervous about this one. But this one is touching much more of a nerve with people.

  • Stop trying so hard, this is like 5 blog posts in 1, less = more

    • Ha, Tim. You are brilliant. But maybe I’ll still get 5 posts out of this one. We’ll see.

  • Anonymous

    Hysterical. Brilliant. Should be turned into a novel. However, your grammar is horrible. Did you pay attention in high school? Did you ever graduate high school? Kisses.

    • Kjp712

      Is it the Grammar police or the Dream Police?

    • I didn’t take grammar in college or grad school either. Thats why I think its all a waste.

      but here’s the thing: i edit a lot (the first draft of this was 2x as big), but I don’t proof read. Maybe I should.

      • Gwen

        I would be more than happy to serve as a proofreader for your blog. Free of charge!

        If interested, please send me an e-mail at lovitzgt@yahoo.com

        By letting me help you, you help me to follow the road (and advice) you’ve taken as I am in the process of trying to establish myself as a copy editor. So help me to realize the dream!


    • Red October

      Perhaps the pot shouldn’t be calling the kettle black. It’s graduate “from” high school, not “graduate high school.”

  • amy

    I did 4 years in a very tight-ass corporation (are there any other kind?) Got my skills, excelled, then freelanced for the rest of my life. The contract is: if you don’t like me, can me, if I don’t like you, I quit. We give each other 30 seconds’ notice. It’s the closest you can come to freedom while still earning a living.

  • Caromusa

    Great post, as usual, or even more!
    Sometimes I feel some of those things. I like my job very much. It’s just that I hate people much more. By people I don’t mean X or Y person in particular (I even like several coworkers), just people as a general entity.
    But I also know that if I worked exclusively from home (now I do that in the evenings), I would feel trapped and in the need to see some people.
    Maybe it’s me, maybe I need a shrink.

  • Kane1626

    Best blog yet, James. I too worked in a high stress environment and one day decided to quit. I had enemies and they gossiped all day and were plain mean. My superiors refused to do anything and you had to force them through HR to discipline the gossiping slackers(They get hardly any work done). I called the Leave Specialist one day and took a leave of absence and have never been back. I have never given a reason for why I left, it just felt like the right thing to do. I have heard rumors as to why I left and they all have been sick,hurtful lies made up by sick people who still work there. Since I left my health has gotten better and I felt like I had been freed from some sort of prison. I now do things that I never thought I would do like instruct yoga classes. Since I’ve left there has been many premature deaths(probably due to stress) and one suicide. I think daily that I could have been one of those.

  • Too bad they isn’t a National “Tell Your Boss to Shove It” day. Everyone could quit, and there would be an equal number of job openings that same day.

    I’d love to see the pubs on that day!

    • David Gobel

      oddly, I have the url wequit.org ;-)

      • morph2020

        I had one of those “shove it” moments at work once. The boss was ex-military. The higher-ups thought he had great “leadership skills,” but he was not a leader; he was just another ignorant ass-kicker. I had been planning to tell him to shove it for several weeks and already had stripped most of my belongings from the office. He hired 3 people to take over my job.

  • Dennis

    Yeah I remember all your Street.com videos taking place on a sidewalk or a bench on Wall St. I always assumed you just wanted the background of Wall St. to impress the viewers with symbols of the market. Didn’t know there was another reason. Ha. Cool.

    • Yeah, I don’t know what it was. I had a psychological block against actually going in the building and seeing all the people. but, that said, I think the videos were better for it. Plus, I lived 10 feet away from where I did the videos. So life was good.

  • JE

    I have been reading along here for several weeks, trying to find the nerve to write to you. I told my girlfriend about this and she said “In a year you’ll either have written to him, or not.” Well, OK, thanks. The fact is, I relate strongly to most everything you write, and this terrific post has pushed it to another level. I have had several jobs. I have left every one of them pretty much the same way you describe in your post. Now, I am the #2 executive at a Goldman portfolio company. We took their money last year. I make a terrific living. But I hate, hate, hate 99% of what I do, and pretty much despise my CEO (who, bizarrely, starts almost every conversation with me by saying “As your friend, . . . “). I found the job on Craigslist two years ago. It was supposed to be a 100 hour temp position. I worked 100 hours in the first six days. Recently, I was talking with a Goldman MD and he said to me “You play in the NFL now. You’re only as good as the next game.” He was completely serious. I should not be around people who think this much of themselves. None of them — the Goldman jocks, the CEO — know that I run an interest rate trading business that pays me 200% of my earnings at the company. Month in and month out. For several years now. And even with that business in place, I can’t bring myself to leave the company, because I am scared of not being “gainfully” employed. So stupid. Anyway, thanks for providing a forum for me to put this in writing.

    • It’s difficult to tell someone else not to be afraid. (We all know there’s so much more to everyone’s story than cam be posted on a forum like this) But the thing with fear is it’s invisible, it’s only there if you choose to see it.

      You only live once – the time you spend disliking your job – is time you will never get back.

      • Very true.

        • You should start a national ‘Quit Your Job Day’. There is a safety in numbers and when people see their friends just walking out they will pluck up the courage to do it themselves.

          Then, they will all go to Starbucks and wonder what to do for the rest of the day. Then they will panic and go and ask for their jobs back……

          (It was a bad idea.)

          Some people just don’t want to quit. They will talk and talk about it but at the end of the day they really don’t want to do it.

          • Rajiv1302003

            This would be me.

    • JE, I know EXACTLY how you feel. Its scary to make the jump. The first day i did, I literally cried. But life is so much bigger than working at a job that makes you unhappy. If you take the leap, maybe things don’t work out immediately. But they will work out. Feel free to email me offline if you want: altucher@gmail.com. Anyone can email me.

      But..I loathe instability. And yet, I don’t’ think i can work anywhere stable. There’s a balance in between though and its possible to find. But you have to be creative and careful to get there.

      • Eran

        Awesome story.

        For me, I got my startup going while having a full time job, and when I had about a year or two of savings, and a company that was growing fast, I jumped ship.without even thinking much, even though I was, and am still in, the most volatile industries in the world. I do not like being a slave to others. It’s simply about having a safety net, besides, I knew skills were half decent and I could easily go get a job again if I needed to. I have four kids and a wife.

        Seriously, if you had millions saved up, why would you ever worry about work again? And if you are not saving at a ridiculous rate considering your income leevl, then I would spend 90% on minimizing expenses so that you can break free sooner.

    • DR

      JE, I feel your pain! I left a very stable firm – liked the people and made good money – to do my own thing, and then ended up back at a firm after a few years. I’m itching to try again. However, this time I’m trying to be a little smarter by identifying the pros and cons and building something that contains the best of both worlds.

      Everyone is different, but for me, I enjoy the structure and social environment of a firm, but dislike the lack of control and the general feeling that I’m not doing something rewarding with my life. If I can create my own structured and stimulating environment, then I’ll be all set. Good luck.

      • Rahim Semy

        Like you, I really like a place with a good social environment, but need to do something rewarding with my life.

        I’m about to leave my job to try something on my own. This is the first time I’m doing it and am VERY scared.

        Any advice would be appreciated.


      • Guest

        Did anyone every think all y’all liked-minded people should get together and create your structured (but not too much) and stimulating environment? Just seems like common sense to me.

  • UraniumC

    Ha! Great idea and I’ve done it more than once. I’ve also been thrown in the abyss involuntarily. That’s less fun.

    Interestingly, my reasons and goals never seemed to work out. Still, it was always an adventure. One time I quit to buy some B-to-B magazines. Spent five years. Failed. Morphed into a consulting gig around the beginning of year three. Great, but infrequent money. Lots of free time. Then one day a potential client hired me be to a publisher again. Not much of a failure penalty that.

    As Leo Burnett once allegedly said: “If you reach for a star, you might not get one. But you won’t come up with a handful of mud either.”

    So now, at age 60 with my kid in her freshman year at college, I’ve done it again.

    Last December I decided the additional corporate procedures the new management team were layering on just weren’t gonna work for me. So I resigned. They asked me to stay on till a replacement could be found. I’m still here.

    Not sure why finding a replacement is taking so long as this is a job most slow chimps could do. Guess slow chimps are in short supply.

    But it works for me. I do the fun stuff I like. Ignore what I don’t. Get praised for my accomplishments (while my colleagues are bogged down trying to follow the new systems). Collect the pay.

    Eventually it will end. Mmmm. Wonder what’s next……

    • UraniumC, that sounds ideal. Maybe take some time each day though just to brainstorm (and have fun with) what could be next.

      • UraniumC

        It really has become an ideal, if short term, situation. My boss is better off with me in place and he is smart enough to value results over rule following.

        at some point, of course, his masters will insist he get me in line or get me replaced. Meantime, my mantra to policy is “I would prefer not to.”

        That, BTW, is from Herman Melville’s story Bartelby the Scrivner and is prehaps the most useful phrase in the the English language. If you, or anyone else hasn’t read Bartelby do yourself the favor.

        And, if tried and failed to wade thru Moby Dick (as did I), don’t let that put you off. This is a far more accessable and entertaining read.

        • James

          try reading billy bud

    • morph2020

      Slow chimps are lined up at the border waiting for their H1-B visas. Soon, you will train one of them in your work methods.

  • I had a weird leg injury like that when I was a kid. Woke up, got ready for school, and as I was walking out the door my mom noticed I had a small limp (that had never been there before). I sat down and a few hours later I couldn’t walk at all, and had to spend the day at home. The next day I was fine.

    Maybe the injury was telling me something about school.

  • Ugh. I am so guilty of plenty of this. I am not utilized at work to anywhere near my ability, the work has become too easy and boring, I feel like I can be so much more. Why don’t I quit? It is almost spring/summer time and I made a deal with myself that I would do tons of fishing this summer and take all my vacation days. Then I will look for a new job in the Autumn. Let’s see if I stick to it.

    • Stick with it. I’ll tell you why: at the very least, treat the job market like any other market. You need to determine what your value is on this market. I’ll have more on this in a bit. But start soon. Also, resumes are dead. More later.

      • Looking forward to it.

      • JD

        Resumes are dead? Very interested in what has taken there place. Great write up. Thanks for it.

  • I just love how you tell your story — really read it with great anxiety and interest… on the edge of my seat even! You make the unimaginable seem like the most sensible thing to do. Applause applause. Now, with all the love in the world, I compel you to write the one about being swallowed in the abyss…

  • Fun post. A couple of observations, and I say this not to be critical, but while I am smiling about the ways you have up and exited certain jobs or careers !

    James, you are a rare bird.

    You are simply not cut out to be an employee !

    You are also a questionable choice to be someone’s business partner. Too mercurial.

    Finally, your advice that 90% of all corporate workers should quit their jobs is a bridge too far. I understand that you are being provocative and like to get people to think. However, my observation and opinion is that most people simply are not cut out to be “out there” like that, as entrepreneurs or risk takers. They just can’t handle it or do it.

    I can, have and still do. And even then, not quite as dynamically as you.

    Putting aside the fact that most people would not be able to replace what they currently earn (some will, most won’t), you are probably right that people need to do & try new and different things, and it would be healthy for them (emotionally, not economically).

    Unfortunately, its just not as simple a scenario for most people to seriously be able to consider.

    • Yogi

      About 100 years ago 90% people in the world worked for themselves. And they had done so for eons. How times have changed. Or rather capitalism has changed all of us to believe that this employment (enslavement) option is the only Way of making a living.

  • One more thing … courtesy of Paul McCartney:

    Woke up, fell out of bed
    Dragged a comb across my head
    Found my way downstairs and drank a cup
    And looking up I noticed I was late

    Found my coat and grabbed my hat
    Made the bus in seconds flat
    Found my way upstairs and had a smoke
    And somebody spoke and I went into a dream

  • Spence

    I put down Alice in Wonderland to read that post. You and Lewis Carroll must be soul mates. That’s a compliment.

  • SourceDirect

    This one struck home and is true. One job I had would lay off 3 people a week and just replace them. It was just how they rolled to get everyone productive. I stuck it out and would get nosebleed. Another job I had, the head of the company wanted everyone not senior staff gone…this time I stuck it out less, but stayed to keep my pension benefits, but I always couldn’t wake up..nicely, the guy was caught in an audit, and was bounced out..Another one, my boss was antisemitic, and thought I was jewish (I’m not, but she had no idea what ethnicity I was, so that caused some sort of disconnect in her brain). She also loved to scream at me and other staff for absolutely nothing that was even wrong. If the photocopier was broken, she would scream at Analysts on why didn’t they fix it. I just up and left. I didn’t even let myself get stressed about it. You can’t waste your time on people like that.

    The weird thing is, how some coworkers react to any of this stuff. I had a person, who went to my wedding, scream at me for leaving. I had others want to meet and shake my hand. Some just see me and turn the other way really quickly. And others think I was the smartest guy in the room.

    The scariest one is I have friends that have jobs that literally they have nothing to do. So they surf the net all day…..and they are miserable, because they are actually losing their skills and interest. That’s the one where it seems to make sense to up and leave.

  • Concrete Dovetail

    Hey James. Those videos for the street were quite good. I’ve always wondered why they would let you go. Maybe you could do similar videos for this blog. Wouldn’t have to be about stocks. Could be about whatever…you could do your own talk show. Of course, it would be beautifully weird if you did a quick video on reasons to leave your job in front of Wall Street with the same intensity as someone recommending stocks.

  • s_nyc


    I relate a lot to what you write.

    Out of curiosity, did you ever take a Myers-Briggs test? I am sure you despise the idea of being boxed in, but the result would be interesting for your readers. It is not so hard to guess though.

    Thanks for helping others out.



  • If you are in a rut, get out. If you like the rut you’re in, do nothing. Something you never expected will happen in your life, so while you have the choice you should be doing something you like.

    Before you know it, you’ll be in a retirement home with minimum wage earners deciding what you can eat and when, and when your thermostat will be adjusted and your diaper changed…….and guess
    what? Those people taking care of you hates their jobs too.

    Now that’s scary stuff.

  • very funny) you know, i can name you a lot more reasons but sometimes you have only one reason to tay and it happens to be the strongest one..

  • Jsinger

    James….of all the people I see on CNBC, techTicker…etc….you are by far the most helpful and one everyone should listen to.

    I agree with what you say about real estate, college education , healthcare as well as taxes and how we should all start our own businesses.

    I started my software company while I was working for another company 8 years ago and I am still running the company…plus I believe my college education was a complete waste of time.

    Anyway….without knowing you personally I feel like you are a friend of mine.

    Thank you for the work you do.

    • j, thanks a lot. Thats the way I started my first software company as well. Its the way to do it.

  • Tim


    You are on quite a roll here, I am impressed by the volume of blogs, subject matter and thought provoking content.

    I had several similar experiences in my career and am amazed at how clear the memories are of jobs I had three decades ago where I dreaded going into work. I can remember laying in bed at night feeling trapped by responsibilities. Fortunately, I was able to find a better job (work content, ability to learn, earn more) and get out of that situation. I never just quit, it seemed too irresponsible. I kept looking until I had a job to jump too. A few times, the replacement job was worse!

    Given your history and your openness about sharing it with the world, do you think anyone would hire you?


    • ha, thats a good question Tim. Every now and then i get job offers (I have some successes every now and then) but I enjoy doing what I’m doing now.

  • txchick57

    I would literally put a gun in my mouth if I had to go work somewhere every day. There are days I hate trading too (which is how we eat). Spent more than a few days in the abyss too. I wouldn’t trade a day of it for 99.999% of the jobs I see. I have done some contract work from time to time. They beg me to come back but I can’t get out the door fast enough.

    • tx, thats great. I think the key for most people is finding happiness with fewer needs. I don’t need a 6000 sq ft apartment in NYC for instance. Or a plane. Or art. Once you cut out a lot, a lot of things you don’t want to do can get cut out also.

      • UraniumC


        The less you need, the less you need to be free.

  • Index1000

    If you are going to excel at something you had better insure it is something you love doing. There is no worse position than finding yourself held captive by something or someone that drains your energy and kills you slowly each day.

  • A Day On

    Fucking aye!

  • Kventi2000

    I like you.

  • Al Bundy never quit his job at the shoe store and look where it got him….

    So many people stick it out at jobs they hate, and go into debt to buy crap they don’t need. School really prepares the masses to be sheep, and support ridiculous holidays like Christmas. During the Christmas season, they go and visit relatives they can’t stand. This is done against their will and better judgement. “It’s traditional”
    If they survive the stress, they are faced with bills that take months to pay off. We have shut most of our factories down. Doesn’t it just warm your heart to know that every year, Billions of dollars is funnelled to Communist China in support of this great annual disaster? We keep their children nice and warm with long hours of forced labour in their sweat shops.
    The garbage that is purchased over this holy day season will break down and clog up the landfills long before the credit cards have been paid off at a high interest rate. Santa is spelled very close to Satan.

    Long before it’s victims have recovered from X-Mess the Easter Bundy, er Bunny, comes along.

    How about 12 reasons to quit longstanding annoying ridiculous traditions and holidays?

  • pjc

    With you on the whole “don’t want to go to the office” thing. Now I work from home, and it’s much less stressful as a whole. I’m going surfing this afternoon. No-one will know.

  • Traderez

    James face it, you were made to stay home with loving family TRADE* and write. = FREEDOM

  • PIP

    While I completely agree with everything you are saying I think each of us has to evaluate the risks of jumping ship against their own particular set of circumstances. Long story short I jumped ship to created a couple of companies some with good out comes but the latest was an unmitigated disaster which resulted in me almost loosing everything so right now my job is not that bad, I like the people I work with, it gives me lots of flexibility, and I am paid well. For the past few years I have been trading currencies on the side and longing for the right moment to leave,but I have since come to the conclusion that regardless how good I get at trading I need to keep the job since I don’t want to drag my family through hell and back yet again should I ultimately fail at trading.

    • SourceDirect

      It’s good to have a side hustle.

      I feel the main point that was written though was the sign when things weren’t a good fit at all. If you can’t get out of bed, you are getting yourself sick, or you are just twiddling your thumbs, there will be a better job or business.

  • drummerboy

    i will never work for anyone else. once you can quit a job that you have been at for more than 16 years as you have children and a house, takes guts. its exactly what i did in the middle of a 3 1/2 year separation till D-day was final…. before i started my own business,i was working out of the “hall” @ the local as a casual,so i got offers from these places asking,and in one instance begging me to work for them. many i turned down, many of them i just told them they could call the hall and get someone else cause i didnt like how they ran their business’. i didnt care,i wasnt about to be some asshole’s slave for another long portion of my life while i was making them rich while they slept.when you are “thrown” into any life altering situation that is way out of your comfort zone,youd had better been all brushed up on your improvisational skill or any advocation that you may have had and reinvent your self, with conviction. i have done it about 8-9 times in the last 25 years.it is easy to tell any boss to go piss up a rope. this is a line me and the guys at the barn used to tell each other when we used to throw daggers at each other during a job,” you gotta want to do it”. you want it, do it!

  • Anonymous

    My wife quit her job earlier today, mostly for reasons D, F and I. I can’t wait to watch her read this.

  • Davi Assumpção

    I long for the day I’ll punch myself in the face, break a glass coffee table and quit my job. Fight Club style!

  • PatD

    WOW James A…
    You have stirred up the troops on this post….!
    now…my question to you is….
    once we achieve a semblance of our dream life….and have worked and earned it
    I am not referring to winning the lottery….
    How do we deal with the pangs of guilt???
    eg…when faced by old friends…relatives…etc….
    OK maybe I am a rare example of unwarrented guilt …but….
    maybe this could be a future topic for you….

    Dont mean to imply you need ideas….
    your brainwaves always seems to work @ the speed of light…

    • Heres my two rules about “pleasant problems”.

      Rule #1: don’t worry about them until after they happen
      Rule #2: remind yourself of rule #1

      (misquoting buffett)

  • Awesome Bitch

    Thanks for writing this, James. I was inspired by your post to quit my job today, and I feel relieved. And a little anxious about the future. But mostly relieved.

  • Doug

    James – I sure wish your friend at PEN would give us an update – Please pass this on if you know him – BTW I think your answer about the insider trading was level headed and un histerical

  • rex

    Super stuff James. Scary but super. I have hated my job for more than a decade. If hate seems like a strong word, how is this: I even became an alcoholic, at least in part, to numb the pain of going there. It started by obliterating myself after work, and whatever the line is that separates the ‘alcohol addicted’ from a ‘heavy drinker’ is, I crossed it a few years ago. “If I have to go there might as well be buzzed,” was my solution. (Believe me your approach is much healthier and kinder.)

    Cutting to the chase… Six months sober and the company has given me an opportunity to reinvent myself, but every fiber of my being says I should leave. Unfortunately, the fibers of the other beings close to me are telling me to stay until I have a plan. Plans are overrated, and I suck at making them. The grass may not really be greener on the other side, but getting over the fence would be fun. Thanks.

    • Its not bad to have a plan. But now you need to plan to plan. Start today. Make the list. What else can you do? Your list is going to be bad. You need at least a month to build the idea muscle back up. But start making a list every day starting today. What are 10 other things you can do. Start the list with this: “buy a gas station” and work from there.

  • This post was well timed for me. My job has been reduced to something I enjoy to tolerable. Also, I have to have a company attorney pre-approve all trades that I put on. To make it worse, I can only trade ETFs and commodities; no individual equity names. This makes me realize that I don’t love my job and, to boot, I’m restricted when it comes to increasing my personal portfolio.

    This post helped me realize that the only reason why I’m still is because they provide free health insurance. Is that worth loathing each day in the office? I’m beginning to think, “no.”

    • Index1000

      i had a similar experience trading for a Hedge fund a few years ago. I love trading but grew weary of all the crap involved in being part of an organisation i was losing respect for. So i upped and left and have traded my own funds ever since, best decision ever. I make more money (well get to keep more anyway) and travel. The sense of freedom is wonderful and i would not consider going back.

      • Thank you for the reply. You have done, what I am trying to build the courage to do. I work at a P/E firm currently; so my experience sounds similar to yours. My wife and I have five children and she wants to be a stay-at-home Mom. I know I would be happier if I made this leap, but the health insurance anchors me down. I need to flush out my fears to see if I’m being reasonable or not.

        Congrats to your success.

        • mattrix, maybe the key is not necessarily a direct leap but to start to brainstorm what else is out there. You are at a P/E firm:
          a) can you run one of the portfolio companies?
          b) can you run your own (smaller) P/E firm?
          c) can you work for a different (bigger) P/E firm?
          d) can you set up the P/E arm of a large hedge fund?
          e) can you personally buy a company you analyze and use your rolodex to find the money

  • Best piece of advice I got from a friend, when I was considering giving up everything and move to California for the dot com boom: “Leap and the net will appear.”

    I did. There was a net. But even if there hadn’t been, taking those leaps, where our future depends upon us and not a version of someone’s stability, one of the best things in life…

    • i agree with this. I suspect, kamal, that solid preparation for years in advance helped build your net. And I don’t mean specific preparation but building discipline, creativity, an ability to execute and deal with people, etc. When the preparation is there, you can leap and all the world will join together to form the net.

  • MJG

    It’s taken me about three years to figure out that I hate being a lawyer. About all of those warning signs apply to me, time for something new.

    Love the blog James, keep up the good work.

  • lee

    “You are thinking about selling diet pills. Tim Ferris aside, nobody in their right mind should sell diet pills.”

    hey James, just curious what did you think of his book – 4hr work week?

    Aside from that, your post hits home in so many ways–and I’ll bet for a lot of people. Life is too short to waste on office drama…

  • Adieu

    I quit a high-profile job during what I consider an “out of body” experience. I saw my hands on the keyboard typing a letter of resignation. I heard my shoes tapping on the floor up to HR. It was my voice tendering resignation, but I swear it was like Invasion of the Body Snatchers. After months of dry heaves, hiding in my storage closet, upper and lower GI exams, losing fistfuls of hair and grinding my teeth to bits, I did it.

    Nothing is as bad as sitting in a gigantic hole filled with septic misery.

  • Cool Boy Kevin

    ok…. i have oficially become a fan of your posts, but you know i seem to have a problem. Right now i’m a college student and i agree with you, College is so overrated or at least thats what i think form time to time, i mean really most of the people who are really wealthy didn’t get to college before becoming really wealthy anyhow i am still on the verge of deciding if i’m going to be a droupout or a fulltime overly payed, bossed around and probably even unhappy guy, like you were….

    So my big question is: how do i know if college is for me?…. you should really at least try to answer my question or make a post on this theme….

    P.D. i don’t have the best grammer… =)

    • morph2020

      Cool Boy, naybe your poor grammar and poor spelling are part of your job problem. The word “grammar” does not contain a letter “e,” but most elementary school students should have learned that already The word “payed” is spelled incorrectly, too. Were you always too cool for school?

  • Mike

    “JE, I know EXACTLY how you feel. Its scary to make the jump. The first day i did, I literally cried. But life is so much bigger than working at a job that makes you unhappy. If you take the leap, maybe things don’t work out immediately. But they will work out.
    But..I loathe instability. And yet, I don’t’ think i can work anywhere stable. There’s a balance in between though and its possible to find. But you have to be creative and careful to get there.”

    James, James, James, i can not agree with you more but there is one thing your leaving out… You are a genius. Your a programming, stock picking machine. It would be unfair to tell most people to quit their job and become professional soccer players right? While i do not think you need to be highly intelligent in order to succeed at entrepreneurship i still believe it helps a lot. I’m in my mid 20s and have had so many businesses.. i learned more than i could have ever imagined, but it took time. If i would have left a job without my experiences at 18-23 id be screwed..simple as that. Think about how many people go into business because they like to do something they enjoy like a cupcake maker… who never even heard the word scalability, cost per acquisition, the difference between a sole proprietorship/ LLC, etc.. they are doomed and do not even know it. When i was 18 i opened a business serving people 1 on 1. I learned so much but most importantly i learned it was stupid, i learned it would never scale, i learned it was an uphill battle, i learned i was selfish, i opened the business because i liked to make widgets, i did not solve a problem or fulfill a need. If we were all as smart as you im sure we would feel more confident jumping off the cliff into self employment.

    – a 24 year old.

  • Tumor

    I read this last week and got so excited that I quit my job the following morning but then realized afterwards I’m not eligible for unemployment benefits for quitting and I have no savings.
    I ran back to my company and begged to withdraw my resignation letter but it was too late.

    Even worse, my former employer sent e-mails out that same day to his colleagues and blacklisted me from getting another job in my field.

    Now a week later, I sold all my furniture but still don’t have enough money to pay next month’s rent.
    My family is so angry at me for quitting my job and have disowned me so I will be completely homeless soon.

    My life is ruined.

    • Irishgirlsusie

      Oh, give me a break! You deserve to have your life ruined if you are dumb enough to take another’s advice without thinking it through.

      Corporate America loves fools like you. You don’t question anything being communicated to you, just blindly follow someone elses lead.

  • Bobby2007

    Quitting your job is like when Cortes burned his ships to force his troops to conquer the natives and take their gold. They were already well off. But sometimes you need to go into the abyss to get everything that you ever dreamed of.

  • bbg

    Wow, just found your blog and read a couple posts. You’re a world-class pompous bore aren’t you? It all reads like some attention-seeking adolescent trying really hard to show how cool and different he is.


  • zuza

    James Altucher is soo funny! His article really made me laugh out loud this morning. It lifted my spirit, which is no easy feat these days. I am totally going to quit my @#% job too! It’s just a matter of time.

  • What do you do when you actually love your job……but are surrounded by people that hate theirs? The hate, resentment, and ill feelings can be contagious, and even if they aren’t, the atmosphere is enough to “harsh my buzz.”

  • Nice post I feel like quitting everyday… I am trying to do something about it instead of just wanting to. I am blogging started a blog http://www.how2becomewealthy.com I have a post similar to this. I found it on a blog by S Pavina (spelling)

    I have also stared a Drycleaning service with a friend. http://www.rushhourdrycleaning.com.

    I used to swing trade but went to cash back in 09/10 want to get back in the market again.

    Thanks for the post will check back from time to time. One day soon my blog as successfull as this one


  • Diomedes777

    I had a similar situation in the late 90s. I had been working for a particular company for approximately 2 years. After a re-org, a guy that was originally one of my peers became my boss. This guy had absolutely NO management skills whatsoever and to top it all off, he had a horrible temper. He would actively yell in meetings and in private conversations towards not just his subordinates, but others as well. Additionally, this was an individual that seemed to have some agenda against Microsoft and would actively demean those working on software that ran on that platform. (i.e. ME)
    After a particularly nasty exchange in a meeting, where the boss actually made an ass of himself after mis-interpreting data from one of the reports I had wrote, I made the conscious decision that enough was enough. I started my job search and within about a month, I had scored a stellar position with a great company that paid about 20% that my current salary and had generous stock options associated with it. So I left. Story I heard after the fact that the pompous boss tried to downplay my departure by stating that is was ‘just a Microsoft programmer’ and that ‘he can figure out that stuff easily’. Well, from what I was told, after trying to decipher my work for about 2 months, the boss finally had to pass it off to someone else who was familiar with that platform and code. The two main projects that were the company’s bread and butter ended up slipping by a full four months as a result. Needless to say, I did experience a certain amount of shamely joy. :-)
    In the end, the company was eventually bought by another and within a year after that, the operations were eventually shut down. And the boss got let go.

    • morph2020

      In bad organizations, the individuals with poorest temper controls are the ones most likely to get promoted. The as****** rise to the top and make everybody else miserable.

  • BreathofFreshAir

    James, I just came across your article and felt compelled to respond.
    Yesterday, I was let go from one of the top biglaw firms working as a project assistant in the litigation dept. I had been there since July of 2010, and prior to that, worked at a bank for 9+ years. Needless to say, I have been working since I was 16 years old (you can do the math lol). In the pa position, my first group did not spend the time to train me, and my second senior legal assistant did a terrible job explaining tasks and underutilized me (for the simple reason for not wanting to explain things to me). Honestly, I feel great since I was let go, because I am then able to focus on graduate school applications and looking for meaningful work that sparks my interest. It is refreshing to come across your article.

  • Ams

    I read this article and went through the posts below. I am 25 years old and feel like I’m going through a quarter life crisis (or so I’ve been told). It seems a lot of individuals who have up and left their jobs had a comfortable cushion to hold them over until they ‘found’ themselves. I do not have that luxury but have most of all the sentiments in this blog and the posts below. I’ve been deemed the “Jill of all trades” by family and friends – not because I’m innately talented and have a ton of skills. But because I pick things up fast, get bored easily, and have the desire to experience many things. I’m a QA Engineer – and I know I can do so much more but can’t seem to find a path I want to take. One day I want to be in Marketing, another day in Education, then Project Management, then designer…I have no friggin idea what I want to do. I just know I don’t want to do this. Then its the issue of not being qualified on paper for a different job. It seems like an endless loop that lands me back at square 1 – a job I despise and a desire to experience various jobs.

    • Gee

      Perhaps what you really want is an inner experience rather than a job. Instead of asking yourself “What do I want to do?”, try instead asking “What do I want to feel?” and “What do I want to experience?”

      In pursuing or seeking to pursue all of those job interests, you most likely are truly desiring a way of expressing what’s within. You aren’t finding it, and so you end up back at square 1. Most likely there is something that you want to BE (and that doesn’t mean a job).

      BEING and BECOMING aligns us with what our souls seek and demand of us. Running the rat race of doing aligns us with the status quo, which is has material acquisition as its aim, and fear as its driving force.

      There is a reason why we are called human beings and not than human doings. So try asking yourself questions that speak to your feeling states, rather than what there is to do or that can be done.

    • morph2020

      Ams, as a former QA Engineer sort of person, I can assure you that the biggest quality control fad (statistical process control) is being way over-used because of a basic misunderstanding of when a statistical method is correctly applicable.

      If you are keeping SPC charts for a product line that is being 100% tested before shipment to customers, then you are just doing stupid busywork. SPC has no use whatsoever except when the product is NOT 100% tested, The whole SPC world is designed to infer the quality of the units you are not testing.

      When testing is cheap and nondestructive, you should do 100% testing — always. When testing is expensive and/or destructive, you have to do SPC as the alternative.

      If you want to know more, you can write me by screen name with the “at” symbol followed “aol.com” and I will respond.

  • CG

    I have worked at the same job for 13 years (since I was 19 years old). I LOVE the actual work that I do, but I don’t think I can take the stupid stuff anymore (I know, not really streching the limits in vocabulary, but that is really all I can think of to describe it). My Office Manager is awful and some of the rules she comes up with are crazy. I have been yelled at and talked down to, and I had my final straw when my coworker/best friend quit after four years due to this awful person. We work in a small office with four employees, and I literally email everything just to avoid talking to her. I read this article and I think, why am I still here? I have a sense of loyalty to the owner and, again, love the work that I do, yet I HATE being up here (obviously, I am typing on this blog while work). Guess I need to get some guts and just do it! I may have to save this for future courage.:-)

    • morph2020

      CG, you could always tell the big boss, when you’re asked to stay, that you would stay longer if not for Person X.

  • CG

    I have worked at the same job for 13 years (since I was 19 years old). I LOVE the actual work that I do, but I don’t think I can take the stupid stuff anymore (I know, not really streching the limits in vocabulary, but that is really all I can think of to describe it). My Office Manager is awful and some of the rules she comes up with are crazy. I have been yelled at and talked down to, and I had my final straw when my coworker/best friend quit after four years due to this awful person. We work in a small office with four employees, and I literally email everything just to avoid talking to her. I read this article and I think, why am I still here? I have a sense of loyalty to the owner and, again, love the work that I do, yet I HATE being up here (obviously, I am typing on this blog while work). Guess I need to get some guts and just do it! I may have to save this for future courage.:-)

  • Hi James,

    Altho you posted this more than a month ago, I just found it. Let me start by saying that this post is exceptionally validating for me! I quit my job several weeks ago when I realized my health was being affected by the toxic environment there. I said I would finish out my contract (which ends June 30th) unless I find something else before then. I have a masters degree in education, and am looking at returning to some kind of classroom or corporate learning position b/c in the true sense of the word – teaching is my strength. Right now, I am an educational administrator but have realized over the last 3 years in this position that I do not love being an administrator – in fact, I hate it! After I made the decision to leave this position, I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders – so I know it was the right decision. The challenging part is now that I am a lame duck administrator, and my supervisor (who will be the “acting” Director when I leave) has cut me off at the knees in front of my staff. Any suggestions on how to handle that situation?

  • Irishgirlsusie

    James, just found your blog and I’m a fan! The insight you provide is very thought provoking and it definately deviates from the conventional advice usually given. This is good! Ignore the criticism you receive. People who have been brainwashed by the mainstream way of thinking can not see past their own front door.

  • Sjvalleygrl

    So what do I do after I quit? How do I pay my bills? Do I just wait for the repo company to come get my car? And do I just move into the homeless shelter after I get evicted? The only other jobs out there I would hate just as much as the one I have now but I would make less money. Anyone can say “Quit your job” but you don’t advise what to do next.

    • morph2020

      What to do after you quit:
      1. Remain single Avoid responsibility for anyone other than yourself, because
      you can’t even support yourself.
      2. Cut expenses to the bone. Use whatever savings you have to pay off your car, then join a health club. Live and sleep in the car and get occasional baths in the health club. You are free of housing costs. Begging in the streets (Will work for food.) is way more lucrative than most people realize.

  • Joe

    Yeah, this sounds real easy coming from a guy that obviously had a ton of cash his entire life. 

    Boohooo, “i can work for free, but i dont want to come in the office.”  boohoo, i handled billion dollar investment funds.  

    Life is a lot easier if you were already born with a silver spoon.  

  • Hi James. Great post. Have you got any words of wisdom for the classic “your job is redundant due to restructuring.” please?

  • Anonymous

    The last paragraph describes exactly what I’m going through right now.

  • Anonymous

    The last paragraph describes exactly what I’m going through right now.

  • Phill Hocking

    I can’t empathize with this post enough, I got wrongfully terminated from/quit my last job at a large tech company, and this reads like my story if I had your writing skills. Thanks, glad to know I’m not alone!

  • Nbforrest

    I just quit/retired from my job and bought a hot dog cart in front of Lowe’s. 

  • You (and a select few of your readers) might find this related article of interest:

  • Rob

    As much as I hate my job and want to quit, only A and F apply to me.  Although J may apply soon since I just broke up with my girlfriend and the girl I’m looking at right now is pretty cute.

  • Rob

    F) is the only one that applies to me.  Is my job really that good???  It sure doesn’t seem that way.

  • “The one area where slavery is legal in America is when one company buys another company” You forgot prisons, since they became businesses: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPZed8af9RI

  • Anonymous

    uplifting………….. courage fails me so still here suffering hoping for a miracle which will never happen if i dont take action.
    Thx, love ur blog

  • rashley314

    you say I should leave if people are yelling at me…. what if I’m battling urges to yell at everyone I run across? What if I resent people who talk about their hobbies, home lives when I think the business is in the toilet???

  • patricia

    you make me laugh.

  • Ryan

    I can’t believe no one has commented on this for 4 months. It really is true. You can dream and wish and hope and fantasize about quitting your job, but there is only one way to ensure that those dreams and hopes have a chance of materializing. I have the perfect profile to spend 20 years in the finance industry, work my arse off everyday until it is hurting, and then retire at 45 as I will inevitably have earned enough by then. But I don’t enjoy that shit. I graduated in 2009. Post 2009 is not the time to be working in finance. It is not worth the risk, If you want to be doing something where there is risk and return (no return in finance now), go start something on your own. You have almost free access to a medium that can circulate your ideas to 1.7 billion people in any language you wish. I have started a venture of my own, on which I am losing a shit load of money currently, but my current customers love what we’re doing. And that keeps me going, as I have to believe that I will break even at some point in 2014. To keep myself going, I freelance before and after I finish work at my business. It results in 15 hour days on many days of the week, but I have learnt more in the last 10 months than in the 4 years prior to that. I am making a crap load of mistakes, but I see them as tools to fine tune my game so that I become a freaking awesome entrepreneur at some point in the very near future. With the skills I am developing, I know I can always get a job at a good company. But that will be the LAST resort. I will try and fail as many times as I need to. If I am absolutely broke after many attempts, I can always go get a cushy job. And once I have saved up a little, I will start on the entrepreneurial path again.

    As for those with kids, mortgages, EMIs etc, start downsizing (keep the kids) and I am sure you will reach a stage where you think you can jump ship.

    All the best!

  • Louise McGregor

    If I scored 5 1/2 out of 10 I guess I’m lucky I was made redundant.

    Thank you for this. It’s given me lots to think about, and some reassurance, as I take a big leap.

    (The half is because it wasn’t selling diet pills – but a job has receptionist at a nearby hotel seemed like a good idea).

  • Saad

    why is it ok to get yelled at if you are a kid? You said yelling is abuse, and you mentioned that the audience is no longer a child and so should not be yelled at. Thats silly though, as adults we are MORE equipped to deal with verbal abuse. Help me our JC

  • tom

    I quit my job in family busines after 20 years. My asshole parents kept telling me they were going to leave the business to me. Then they sold it. Havent had a job in 8 months. I thought about how it would feel to jump off a bridge into traffic today. Past 20 years were a horrible waste of time. Not sure I can forgive them.

  • James, thank you for this. I quit my job last month with nothing to go to (unless you count freedom, relaxation, improved health, spending my day as I want to, haha…), for many of the reasons above. My office was a hive of negativity, like a lot of workplaces can be. So many people came up to me when I left and said things like “I wish I could do what you’re doing – but I’m too old/have a mortgage/kids/am near to retirement”. It was a self-fulfilling prophecy. I think people know deep down there is more to life than working hard in a job you don’t feel passionate about, but it’s scary to take the leap. But anything is do-able. You can save up for 6 months and then leave. Try starting a business on the side. Isn’t it better to be an inspiration for your kids, rather than the example they don’t want to turn into?! You described a lot of my life beliefs in your article. Thank you for saying what scares people.

  • These real life experiences are indeed amazing. It is true that real life is the best teacher one can possibly have. Schools, colleges create rats for the rat race! Quitting your job is the first thing to do to get out of the rat race.

  • sswam

    “For months after I left nobody could figure out my programming code. Because I had the ugliest code known to mankind. It was indecipherable.” As I programmer who sometimes writes dodgy code, I can understand where you’re coming from. But the company should have sued you (and introduced code review). Thanks for the articles, Have fun!

  • The_Donald_2016

    Leaving my job now. It’s become toxic… it was a dream job just a few months ago – people would die for it. Not now. A new VP came in and wants to replace me with someone he likes – another Indian fellow like him.
    I heard him call our company ‘a white boys club’, so me being a white boy, must go.

    The benefits of the H-1B program. LOL

    The good news, I found a better job… I think, I’ll find out next week I hope; otherwise my Indian boss has put me on notice that I have to ‘fix something’. I think that ‘something’ is that I must somehow become Indian.

    Time to move on.

  • Alan Steven

    Many of us want to quit our jobs and to start something of our own. But, the only thing arise is the right time to quit our jobs. I am also planning to leave my and want to start the consultant company but still waiting for the right time. I hope to find it soon,
    By the way I am a business developer and an Inbound marketer at BookWritingInc. Kindly, visit it yourself if you find it interesting https://www.bookwritinginc.com/