In the midst of change and struggling

23 Jan

On October 28th, 2011 I quit my  job.  I’d worked at two large companies in corporate Treasury (Finance) during the past seven years and had grown to absolutely hate it.  My work life was a non-stop cavalcade of emails that distracted my concentration and derailed my productivity.  My bosses were constantly pressuring me to do more.  The stress was overwhelming.  It had affected my sleep for years, and my health was beginning to deteriorate.  My wife and I decided that I would quit my job to focus on starting a new business.  Luckily, she has a great job that she enjoys (Engineering) and her salary alone can pay our mortgage and other bills.  We also don’t have any children.  In addition, she had several exciting business ideas that showed promise.

Sound like a great situation?  I thought so too…

Unfortunately, my accomplishments over the past 2 1/2 months have amounted to basically nothing.

The initial enthusiasm that I felt for starting a business faded within the first few weeks.  I had to face the fact that, in all honesty, I am not an entrepreneurial person.  Some people enjoy the challenge of starting a business: creating a product, marketing, starting a website, overcoming obstacles, etc.  But that is not me.  (For those of you who are fans of Myers-Briggs Personality Types, I am an ISTJ.  More on that later.)

I then awkwardly explained to my wife that my focus would be on finding what I really want to do.  She said that she felt somewhat “duped”, but reluctantly agreed.

Over the last few months, I’ve spent a tremendous amount of time researching suitable jobs in my area.  I knew that I didn’t want to stay in Treasury, but other areas of Finance remain interesting to me.  Several recruiters expressed interest in my resume, and I was quite excited after meeting with them.  Well the follow-up calls have been few and far between, and no job interviews have materialized as of yet.  I’ve also applied for many jobs online, but this also hasn’t resulted in any job interviews.

Deep down in my heart, I know that FEAR is ruling my life.  My wife says to be courageous and use this opportunity to try something new (e.g. start a new business), but I remain paralyzed.  My subconscious mind is forcing me to look for another 9-to-5 job that will only result in similar levels of dissatisfaction and an eventual desire to quit.  It is a pattern that has played out several times in my life.

I also used this time to research my personality to learn how it relates to suitable careers.  I learned that I am an ISTJ.  Individuals with this personality type tend to be reliable, organized and dependable.  My ideal job would involve a great deal of predictability, which would allow me to apply the aforementioned characteristics while reducing anxiety.  I cannot handle another job that pulls me in 25 different directions at once.  ISTJs also feel a great sense of responsibility to provide for their families financially, and the fact that I’m not doing this is a source of constant self-loathing.

Does my dream job exist?  Perhaps I’m looking in the wrong places and an “out-of-the-box” strategy may yield better results (any suggestions?)  I just want to wake up and look forward to going to work each day.  And now it’s time to state my BIGGEST FEAR: 

My wife will grow tired of me and leave.

Thanks for taking the time to read my inarticulate ramblings.  It is my first post and I hope to do more in the future.  Please feel free to critique my writing and offer suggestions for improvement.