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I quit my job and why should you do it too

Vini Brasil
I am a software engineer working with Elixir, theology student, and musician based in beautiful Curitiba.
・3 min read

Do you feel unmotivated? The projects you are working on have no impact? Can't you remember the last time you learned something or faced a challenge? These are the signs you are in the comfort zone and have to change right now.

Besides work issues such as burnouts, coworker problems and salary, the comfort zone is the main reason you should quit your job.

What is the comfort zone?

In a few words, the comfort zone is a psychological state where things feel familiar to you. It’s when you are on the control of your environment. That causes a steady performance with low rates of overall personal development.

In a professional context, when you are in the comfort zone, you are comfortable doing all the things in your work routine. There are no challenges or pressure. If you are in your comfort zone, you won’t learn anything. Without learning, you don’t evolve.

The comfort zone prevents you from growing.

Am I stuck on the comfort zone?

To define whether you are in this zone or not you’ll have to answer one question:

When was the last time you faced a real challenge?

To be in the comfort zone is easy. The activities you task are the same old and are easy to solve. Challenges make us learn and grow professionally. When you work on a new product or project, you face tasks you’ve never solved. That makes you learn and improve your skills.

If you can’t even remember the last challenge you faced, that’s a sign you are in the comfort zone.

The problem to be stuck on the comfort zone is that you stop to develop your abilities. Your routine turns to be easy and you can solve your daily challenges without effort. Again, without learning, you don’t evolve.

Stepping out the comfort zone

If you want something that you don’t already have, there’s a good chance you’ll have to do things that you haven’t already done.

The main barrier between the comfort zone and the growth zone is fear. You’ll need to take risks, change your routine and create new habits.

I want to speak in public and that’s one of the points in my growth zone. The obstacle is that I fear to speak in public (aka glossophobia). To step out the comfort zone I have to study oratory and try to speak in public. If I don’t take the risk of trying, I’ll never grow.

My experience quitting my job and stepping out the comfort zone

I’ve worked in a Brazilian company for two years. The last months I worked there started to be uneventful. The challenges I was solving became easy and the problems I was working on were achieved without great effort. I was in the comfort zone.

I tried to step out the zone but every project I was committed to work on were comfortable and secure to work with. No challenges at all and I stopped learning and evolving my skills.

I started to look for new challenges and to seek for job opportunities. I wasn’t interested in higher salaries, but higher personal development. In the past two months I did the best thing I’ve ever done in my professional life. I accepted a great job offer. I’m working for a global fintech in the development of a new e-commerce product. I’ve never worked with the programming language I’m using in my new job neither worked for a fintech or an e-commerce engine. That’s all about cracking the comfort zone and keep evolving skills.

Discussion (6)

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sandordargo profile image
Sandor Dargo

If you want to speak in public, I recommend you to attend a ToastMasters group. It helped me a lot.

Here you can discover the existing groups.

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Michiel Sikkes

Great post! And it takes some gut on quitting your job. Now I don’t know your personal professional situation. But ideally, any company should promote keeping people challenged. If that stops (technically or in other new skills) it might indeed be the best to shake hands and say goodbye.

To add my personal experience to the basket: I’m co-founder and CTO of a small company in The Netherlands. Quitting for me is different than quitting a job.

I’ve recently done a few things to keep my life challenging, when I was feeling some downsides at work. So I didn’t have to quit my job and my company, but I did do a few things to step out of my comfort zone and become much happier with that.

You can read my dev.to post if you’re interested: dev.to/michiels/personal-struggles...

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jeikabu

A number of years ago I worked on a AAA game from start to finish, then picked up and started another at a different company. After 10 months I was just... "done". Done. Left my stuff with a friend and spent 2 months traveling around Southeast Asia and then 2 months "studying" at a university in the northern part of China.

Best decision I ever made.

Eventually got bored and was ready to come back to work.
Needless to say I highly recommend this sort of thing.

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robertcoopercode profile image
Robert Cooper

Good on you for not wanting to get comfortable. Best of luck in your new position 👍🏼

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serajam profile image
Fedir Petryk

Did the same thing this summer. Changed my job and programming language. With this my salary certainly dropped but I'm happy now to learn new things :)