I got my first job at age 15, working the register and occasionally serving tables and boxing up pizzas at Pizza Hut. Once I realized the financial potential of being a full-time server — you get TIPS!! — I quit Pizza Hut and got a job at Friendly’s restaurant.
There, I served tables more often and worked as a fountain person (preparing the ice cream sundaes). I also spent a good chunk of that 1997 summer working the dishwashing room. The dishwashing room was super-humid; I developed some kind of fungal infection that had me losing spots of hair. Friendly’s was also where I had my first direct interactions with white girls; that’s another story.
I got fired from Friendly’s for leaving work early one night. I was on closing shift, and if you’ve ever worked closing shift you know that doesn’t mean you leave when the place closes: You leave when the closing work is done, regardless of the time. I was about to miss the last bus home, though, so I dipped out of the back door. The manager on duty found out and that was that. It was a “soft” firing though; no one ever told me, “you’re fired.” They just stopped putting my name on the schedule.
I worked at Rita’s next; got fired again for cash register discrepancies even though they had cameras and never accused me of stealing.
My next job was at McDonald’s. The manager who hired me was named Cathy. I worked there for a year. Cathy had the nerve to get an attitude with me when I quit for a better job at Hat World. When I came to drop off my uniform, Cathy wouldn’t even speak to me or make eye contact.
I quit Hat World after a couple months for the golden opportunity of selling CutCo Knives.
I quit CutCo after a week of “training.”
Then, General Cinema movie theatres: Fired for telling a woman, “I don’t know who the fuck you think you’re talking to” right in front of the manger. Profanity is in my genes. Ha.
CVS was next; this was the first job I left amicably as I was headed to Altoona, PA for school.
My next job was post-grad at Foot Locker; I quit after 6 months. Then Bally Total Fitness, which I quit the day my first basketball agent told me a team in Lithuania was ready to fly me over.
The best episodes of my exists from these jobs (I dumped a couple pro basketball teams as well) were the times I quit. Though I was giving up employment, belonging to the group and the steady paycheck involved, I was also taking the power in my own hands: This isn’t for me, I’m not for this, and it’s over. And it’s MY decision.
There’s a guy I know of who had about 100 employees. He once said that he was disappointed when someone quit his company — he wished he would have identified and fired them first. I feel the same way about the times I was fired: I wish I had quit first.
Maintaining an email list — the method through which you get these messages — isn’t free. The more people on your list, the more you pay. You either pay by the number of people on the list, or the number of emails you send, or both.
If you hear people speak who are in any way involved in internet marketing, they like to ask or share about how many are on [your/their] list. The bigger the number, the more impressive. What they don’t tell you is what those numbers are costing them. Like social media followers, list size alone is a vanity metric: We invest resources in having and growing it, but it’s not directly worth anything to us — and may be costing us more than it makes us.
I already told you how not everyone is my audience. By the time you read this, I’ll be set to delete several thousand people off of my email list. The deleted people are taking up space and costing me money. I’m excited to get rid of these people / email addresses. Like quitting those jobs that I no longer wanted to be in, it’s like dropping 30 pounds in one day.
And it’s MY decision.
For Your Game
- You know when your time is up in a place or relationship or any other form of situation. How long does it take you to leave it, though? Too many of us try to stick it out and be good soldiers, all because we’ve all been properly conditioned to never quit things. My simple advice: Quit before they fire you. Wouldn’t it feel better to leave because you wanted to than for them to be pointing you to the door?
- People will try to make you feel guilty or wrong for quitting. This applies to jobs, business partnerships, intimate relationships, even stuff those accusers are not even involved in. Expect this and be ready for it; Bulletproof Mindset will steel your resolve.
- Those who don’t have the insight/strength/courage/better opportunity to quit grow old in a place they don’t really want to be in but don’t have a better alternative. That’s sad. If you’ve worked at any jobs like those I’ve described, you’ve seen this first hand. A lot of my coworkers at these places were lifers if the industry; some actually loved their job but many merely endured their jobs. Don’t become the latter, in anything.
When’s the last time you quit something that was no longer for you? How did you feel when you left? What kind of response did you get from the people involved? Reply to this and share with me.