The beginning of the end

I remember, it was 2017, after finishing a phone call I looked up and observed my surroundings. I am an artist and empath.  I see. I observe because it’s the natural thing to do for me. I saw my colleagues were unhappy. It was written all over their faces. In fact they almost all had bags and wrinkles. The stress was written all over their faces. No one smiled anymore. People were emotionally eating. I was one of them. I ate healthy foods (and gummy bears) but huge portions all day long. I remember a lighter time, the beginning of the job where people had light in their eyes and smiled. They wished me a good morning and didn’t know who I was. We now knew each other and a good morning was prison code for, “Survive today.” I looked around and I did an analysis of myself and of my surroundings. No one was happy. I wasn’t happy and no one was going to do a damn thing about it.

I sat there remembering my dreams of owning my own business. I had forgotten about this dream about a year or so into working for a major corporation. I am a thinker and I have constant dialogue with myself. My inner self had been quiet for a while now since I was so burnt out working and I barely had time to focus on my personal goals. I have been a “spiritual” person for almost five years. I enjoy being happy and it’s the ultimate goal for myself (too soon to realize happiness is a choice). I asked myself, as I popped a gummy bear into my mouth without tasting it, “Are you happy?” Well, shit… No! “What would make you happy?” I couldn’t answer this question. I digressed and went back to work.

Time went by and although I was exceeding the company’s standards and goals and making my clients happy, it still wasn’t enough for good ol’ corporate. I was getting passively-aggressively bitched out because upper management never wanted to take accountability for their f-ups. Day in, day out, it was the same mundane routine. I made millions for this company and I got criticism.

You had your chance!

I was guilty of “selling out”. I stayed and enjoyed the perks. I learned how to travel and I experienced traveling the luxurious way. A 4-star hotel? Psscchhh! Why not 5? I kid. I was extremely grateful for each and every experience. One of my favorite experiences was traveling to a 5-star hotel in Florida. I still believe it’s better than many other 5-star properties around the globe. It also ignited a passion I never knew I had for traveling. It is a passion equivalent to how I feel about creating art and spiritual healing. Plus, I was single and it’s a great way to distract yourself. Towards the end, I was casually dating this guy. It seemed like the perfect arrangement for my busy schedule. We even went on a short trip together through my internal struggles. I never told him though. The relationship was a lot like the work I was doing. I was trying to make it work but it was too shallow. My work and romantic life wasn’t reflecting how I felt from within.

One more shot. Are you game?

I made millions for someone else but I couldn’t do it for myself? It all became too much for me. Clients were no longer held responsible for their illogical actions. They would get a, “Yes,” while the cost would come out of my revenue. Managers were in self-preservation mode. It didn’t matter at whose expense as long as it wasn’t them.

In 2017, I devised a plan to quit my job in six months. I gave myself a timeline and made no excuses. No matter how much I saved or didn’t save, I had to go. Along with my happiness, I felt I was losing my sanity. I had to leave for so many reasons but most importantly because I love myself too much to put up with that shit.

Once I made up my mind, the “stress,” no longer seemed stressful anymore. Since the experience was temporary it gave me a sense of peace. I also went through some guilt and self-blame for letting myself be tortured for so long and by choice!  

I called my corporate job the perfect abusive relationship: You start off so pleasant. The job was so inviting and loving. You were introduced to the perks and you felt as if you belonged to this elite group and you didn’t understand why.

One day as you are happily enjoying the sun set, Corporate walks to you. You look up and smile, “Hi baby…“ Wham! You receive the biggest bitch slap. It sends you to the floor. Corporate begins to kick you. It’s a prison beatdown! You just curl up into the fetal position until it’s over. You sold this but you didn’t do this right. You didn’t do that right.  The format is wrong even though no one has a problem. You should have taken on twice the workload. You can’t be a team player and do overtime, [insert more guilt]? You’re not sure how much you can take but you take it. You should be happy Corporate chose you and thought you were special enough to go on a business trip.

One day you look up and Corporate is there again. By habit now you automatically flinch. It approaches you with a smile on its face. You just know today is the day you’re going to get fired. “Hey Lacye, you wanna go to Istanbul?” Well yeah! “It’s in 2 months so get ready.” So I stayed and the cycle continued. The cycle was going to continue until I died. Then they would replace me the next day. I was replaceable and I need not forget that. I was no one special there.

You’re still talking.

So now, Lacye, after years of this cycle the inner dialogue happened again, “Are you happy?” No. “What would make you happy?” To get the fuck out of here! “Well you can but you will find another corporate job and do this all over with different faces. What would make you happy?” To be free (I’m a Sagittarius). “Yes… How can you be free? What makes you feel like you’re in prison?” Working for others. “How do we eliminate this negative feeling?” By working for myself… But wait, I’ve done that before! I’m doing that now! I have a wellness ecommerce site and I sell products but I could never live off of this! “So why are you limiting your business to just products? What are your strengths Lacye?” The stuff I do at this job are my strengths. “No, Lacye. This job is not utilizing your strengths but building you new ones. What are your strengths and we will go there.”

I had a few months to decide about how I wanted to proceed. But what about my new found passion? What about traveling? Ugh! I haven’t even seen the world yet Lacye! I applied for business trips around the world. Despite meeting quota and getting a bonus and recognition, I was never chosen. I don’t believe they assumed I would ever leave the company. They honestly thought I wasn’t going to leave the company. *snickers*

I decided then, I should plan my own trips. And I did and they were the best trips I have ever experienced in my life! I learned to travel alone and it builds so much self-confidence when you do it yourself. I’m excited about sharing my wealth of knowledge with the masses.

You’re all talk, what about action?

So I planned my trips and built my confidence to leave. The universe continued to show me why I needed to leave. The same instances that once felt like beatdowns became water off a duck’s back. I began telling my family what I was going to do. I was concerned that my ultra-conservative, right-winged bloodline would nag the shit out of me but surprisingly, every last one of them were absolutely supportive (at the time). I didn’t plan on receiving that response.

My deadline was approaching. I had a few days left. I went to work on my scheduled last day. I knew I could stay. I could stay and get another quarterly bonus, plan another trip, etc., but it was time to go. All I had to do now was actually do it. So do it!

I knew it was possible to talk yourself out of progressing so I left my badge in the drawer and I left that day to never return. I quit the following day.

I did it! Uhhh, now what?

So I am here. I am going to go over the initial first weeks of this experience along with other things but the hardest step is sometimes action but who am I kidding? I have not chosen the easy path. I’m not looking for easy though. I am looking to follow my dreams so I will never have to work to build someone else’s. This is one of the bookmarks of my life’s journey. Let’s have a journey. Is this happily ever after? Not yet but I’m getting close.