This morning, I didn’t want to get out of bed. The second my alarm went off, a feeling of dread crept over me. I yanked the blankets over my head and curled up into a ball. I didn’t want to face the day. Not today.
It all started last Friday. We had a huge meeting in the office about the future of our start-up. To be honest, it’s hanging on by a thread. It’s failing and the partners are starting to panic. When people get backed into a corner they have a tendency to point fingers and blame others’ for their shortcomings. No one likes to admit they were wrong. No one wants to admit that they failed & that they are inadequate.
I have the unique opportunity to be a fly on the wall. I have quietly listened, watched, and observed every conversation and action over the past year. And I know what when wrong. I know the point at which this venture started to fail. I knew when no one else did. That put me in a very unique and difficult situation. How does a 23 year old woman sit in front of 50 year old men and tell them that they failed? They failed to do what they said they would. They let people down & they let me down.
And today was the day that I needed to do exactly that. But I couldn’t bring myself to list all of the things they had done wrong. I just couldn’t. I felt like the damage was done so what was the point of bringing up past wrongdoings?
But I had to say something.
So I sat down, diplomatically, and I quit. I quit my job. I looked them in the eyes and told them that I could no longer go on working without the prospect of payment. That, for myself and my well being, I needed to leave and do something else. And underlying all of this was my message. You let me down. Now you are on your own to make this venture work.
As I sit here and pack up my desk I feel liberated. I have been waiting for this day for months. I felt obligated to make this work. So obligated that I worked for 2 1/2 months without payment. And today I am free.
A part of me didn’t want this to work. A part of me always wished I could be free of this company. But another part of me wanted this so badly. I wanted to be successful & I wanted to run a company. The whole idea of it was so intoxicating.
I know there are bigger and better things out there for me. But the idea of starting over overwhelms me. And the the threat of failure is very real. The thought of dedicating another year of my life to a venture and having it fail makes me want to curl up in my bed and never leave. But, the thing to remember is that I gave up on one venture but I didn’t give up on my dreams. I just made room in my life to achieve different ones.
So I’ll leave you all with this quote:
“Quitting is not giving up, it’s choosing to focus your attention on something more important. Quitting is not losing confidence, it’s realizing that there are more valuable ways you can spend your time. Quitting is not making excuses, it’s learning to be more productive, efficient and effective instead. Quitting is letting go of things (or people) that are sucking the life out of you so you can do more things that will bring you strength.”
― Osayi Osar-Emokpae, Impossible is Stupid