A lot of people fantasize about quitting their jobs and moving far, far away to live their stress-free, beach life.
A dream, indeed!
I did the first part – the firing my boss – and am now wrapping up the second part – the moving far, far, away.
I really did not put enough thought into how to go about it. If I had a time machine or if the opportunity presents itself again, this is how I’d do it properly.
Two week’s notice is just professional courtesy.
In fact, there is no employment law (in Canada, anyway) that mandates a certain notice period be given when an employee quits.
In the US, I’m pretty sure the whole ‘at-will employment’ thing works work ways. As much as employers are entitled to fire employees at-will with no notice, you can also terminate your employment contract at any time without notice.
I’d recommend sticking to 2 weeks because:
- Your motivation will wane.
It’ll suck because you don’t want to be there anymore but still have to pretend to like your coworkers or care about your job. Even if your acting skills are good, you will crack and people will notice.
- You’ll very quickly be cut out of meetings, projects and communication that you’re normally part of.
Because. You’re. Leaving.
Of course it’ll feel shitty, but why should the company invest in you any longer? You should focus on downloading your brain to someone else so they can put up the slack when you’re gone
I’ll never ever EVER give one month’s notice EVER again. If they treated me well, the maximum I’d give is 3 weeks, and that’s pushing it. I’d stick to the standard two weeks.
Staying In Town
Think you’ll need weeks to pack up, put things in storage, get your visa and do other things?
Have you heard of Parkinson’s Law?
Basically, the philosophy is “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion” – I totally agree!
If you’re a planner like me, you’d be getting all the things you need to do done months before so things line up with your departure date.
What I didn’t account for was that I was too efficient and got everything done well in advance. I literally could have left the following day, but a) I did promise to dogsit, and b) I didn’t feel like it wasn’t worth the extra dollars to change my flight at the time.
Am I regretting it now?
…yeah, a little bit.
I ended up staying in town for another 3.5 weeks before my flight. It felt like I was stuck in limbo. My momentum came to a screeching halt. It’ll take some effort to get it started again. *Sigh*
Here are some of the things I did before I left:
- Exchange currencies
- Get Tourist Visa
- Clear out my place – donate items & put things in storage
- Book flight & hotel
- Apply for and get a credit card that’s good for travelling
- Contact all my utility vendors and tell them to cut off/transfer ownership – hydro, internet, cell phone, provincial health care…etc.
- Find someone to take over my condo
- Do some research on my destination
I’d leave the country a few days after I wrap up my last day of work or, if it’s necessary for me to wait, I’d stay a maximum of one week.
Less talking and waiting and more doing. LET’S GO!
I love my friends and family but…
It’s SO annoying when I get asked the same questions over, over and over again.
When are you leaving? Why are you leaving? What are you doing there? When are you coming back? What do you mean you don’t know when you’ll be back? Why don’t you want to come back? Do you have any friends there? Why are you going there if you don’t know anyone there? Do you have a place to live? What do you mean you’ll just land and figure it out?
I’ll eventually answer your FB, Whatsapp or text messages out of politeness, but please read in-between my passive-aggressive, one-word lines.
It makes me feel like I’m explaining or, worse, justifying myself and my actions to whoever is asking. It’s not a good feeling.
In fact, it stresses me out.
I’ve noticed that in my past too. When I was on the brink of a big change – like relocating to a different city – even when all the logistical stuff was under control and going well, I don’t want to talk about it.
I can give you three reasons:
- Keeping me in the past
My mind is already onto the next step – which is executing on my goals – so every time I’m asked about thingsI’ve already worked through, it pulls me back. Those questions are not helping me move forward.
- Unwanted blast from the past
I know I sound cynical, but if I haven’t talked to someone in the last year, and suddenly they want to meet up because they found out I’m leaving…two things immediately pop in mind:
1) Why? What do you want from me?
2) How do I say no nicely? Because how deep or solid is our friendship really?
Before I leave, I’d only tell people who actually need to know or I want them to know. The rest can find out on their own after I leave.
Research Your Destination
I booked my flight based on price.
It was the last day of reasonably priced flights before it doubled. And I thought I’d need more time to wrap everything up before I leave so I was playing it safe. TOO safe.
You should always do some research on what’s happening in town around the time you plan on arriving. This way you won’t be missing out on the once-a-year celebrations and festivals, like me 🙁
It just wasn’t my top priority then and, boy, am I a little remorseful now!
I’ll definitely research more into what happens at certain months so I can time my arrival and stay better!!
Alas, No Time Machine
Oh well, it’s not like I can turn back the hands of time.
It’s too bad that I lost 3.5 weeks (Time is the most valuable currency, after all) but I’ll take this as a learning opportunity. Next time I’ll know better 🙂