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Quit Your Job, Find Your Calling

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Quit Your Job, Find Your Calling

Do You Long To Quit Your Job?

You hate your job. You despise your job, actually. You get sick to your stomach every Monday morning and the sense of dread doesn’t let up until TGIF Happy Hour. Okay, maybe you don’t TOTALLY hate your job. There is that cute guy in billing, you did work hard to get where you are so far, and the money is decent, even though you deserve more. But you can’t let go of that feeling that there’s something more.

You fantasize about quitting. You create elaborate scenarios in your head that involve telling your boss to take this job and shove it where the sun don’t shine. You visualize cleaning out your office, walking out the front door, unshackling your chains, and throwing debris up in the air as you start break dancing to the perfect soundtrack that rocks you right into the life your dying to live — which is any life except this one.

Just thinking about it, you feel free. You can finally breathe. You stretch your arms out to the side, throw your head back, and inhale.

You know something is calling you — something that would make you giggle to your toes, something you love so much you would do it for free, even though people might actually pay you to do it, something BIG. Something you were born to do. But then that voice inside your head starts shouting so loud that your fantasies fizzle faster than fireworks hitting water.

Is Fear In Change?

You know the familiar dialogue in your head — the one between you and the fearful, panicky part of you that I call The Gremlin — that primal part of your brain that constantly thinks you’re suffering from either “lack” or “attack.” As far as The Gremlin is concerned, there’s never enough: not enough food, not enough love, not enough money. And if there is enough, beware — because you’re about to be attacked by those who want to take it away from you. According to The Gremlin, you haven’t evolved from cave man days, when there really wasn’t enough moose meat to go around, and that cave bear really did nip at your heels.

Most of Us Aren’t Really Lacking Or Being Attacked

I don’t mean to diminish the real struggles people in today’s economy face. Unemployment is high, and many people who lived previously comfortable lives struggle to make ends meet. Certainly, some of these people may feel that they don’t have the luxury to do what they love. They would be happy just to punch a time card and pick up a paycheck at the end of the week.

But you are probably not one of those people.

The truth is that most of the perils of modern day people in developed countries do not put us in direct danger of “lack” or “attack.” Although financial considerations can be real, there’s usually enough food to go around, and most people would not be at direct risk of death or dismemberment if they quit a job they didn’t love. Most of the fears our Gremlins are cueing off are figments of our imagination, theoretical fears that exist only in our minds.

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Lissa Rankin

Lissa Rankin, MD is a mind-body medicine physician, founder of the Whole Health Medicine Institute training program for physicians and other health care providers, and the New York Times bestselling author of Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof That You Can Heal Yourself.  She is on a grassroots mission to heal health care, while empowering you to heal yourself.  Lissa blogs at and also created two online communities - and She is also the author of two other books, a professional artist, an amateur ski bum, and an avid hiker. Lissa lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her husband and daughter.


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1:57PM PDT on Apr 2, 2012


8:03AM PST on Jan 10, 2012

I find this story inspirational and well written, I could clearly visualize The Gremlin. I find myself ready to to pursue an editing career, as one of the things I enjoy the most is reading books. We also wrote a story about knowing who you are and finding meaningful work. I hope it helps. - Erich

7:04PM PST on Dec 1, 2011

i cant afford to quit

1:58PM PST on Nov 9, 2011


1:18PM PST on Nov 8, 2011

Thanks for that interesting article and even thank you more for interesting comments. What I believe most of the people don't know what they really want to do and than they blame the job, the boss the economy .....and whatever you can blame. Our human nature is to take everything for granted and being unhappy, we don't even know why. I strongly believe that everything is in attitude. If you can make the best out of job that you don't like you can make the best out of every situation in your life. Keep the job you don't like, make the best out of it and look for that dream job (if you know what that is).

12:50PM PST on Nov 8, 2011

Hey, a 6 figure income and a healthy retirement fund must have made that leap of faith a whole lot less scary for her than it would be for the majority who live check to check.

I agree with Xristina, this is an advertisement and a rather annoying one at that.

When a leap of faith is more likely to end in homelessness for you and your children you stay put until you find or create something better.

There is such a thing as responsibility and respect for the people depending on us to do right by THEM too and not just ourselves.

My gremlins like PB&J and grow out of their shoes every other day ;D

5:27AM PST on Nov 8, 2011

This is a thinly veiled advertisement.

6:08PM PDT on Jun 12, 2011

Listen to your heart and go for it!!!

12:45PM PDT on May 5, 2011

Life is always to long until your dying. If you hate anything so much, that makes your life a living hell, whats the worst that can happen.....getting a job thats even on & so on. You have to look at it like its just another adventure. Keep trying until you get it as right as is possible.

12:34AM PDT on May 5, 2011

Don't quit one until you have another. If there is any time after WORK (and energy which I'm short on these days as well), perhaps work on your dreams or discover what they really are. Take a course or develop a hobby turning it into a money making adventure. I'm all for protection your mental health, however, if the job is that bad and goes against your conscience- then quit. But be ready for hunger and perhaps homelessness etc.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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