Imagine waking up every morning at 5 AM with a feeling of hopelessness, dread, and despair. Not because your life is miserable, and everything is falling apart around you, but because you know that in a couple of hours you are going to walk into a hell that is your employment. It doesn’t matter what mood you begin your day in, as soon as you hit that corner to your division, you know that your very being is going to be drained at some point.
This was me, up until a little over a month ago. I began working this position a year ago, following the flood that hit Baton Rouge. It was my last resort. At the time of the flood, I was a law student at Southern University, but I lost everything as a result of the flood and needed some income to get my family back on its feet (that’s a whole different story).
I had worked for this employer in the past and my name and my work spoke for itself, so when I called and asked if they had any positions available, I was basically hired on the spot. It would happen, that in that exact moment, there was a mutual need between the company and myself. I needed money and they needed my skill.
The transition back into my previous position started off smooth. I went to work, I plugged in my earphones and I got down to business. I didn’t participate in the office gossip and shenanigans. I kept pretty much to myself. Now, even in keeping to myself, I still heard of the discord that was prevalent and the backward and unprofessional ways of the management team. Yet, still I kept my head down and pushed the work out as was expected of me.
Months are passing by swiftly and I am doing what I do best while getting all the praise and acknowledgment that is due me; but the department is still not progressing as it should. Slowly but surely, my happy go lucky persona is dissipating and I find myself “in the sunken place”. I even created a sign that said I am in the sunken place. At this point, I felt as though no longer was I appreciated, but I was being used. My co-workers disliked me because in a few short months, I, in essence, made them look REALLY bad. I was one person, doing the work of a team of 6, by myself. With that comes all the unwarranted “hating” and whispers and bad energy that you can feel immediately upon walking into that area. I tried not to let it bother me and eventually developed a FUDGE you attitude to them all. Not good.
Further adding to this dynamic where situations that I was made privy to that made me have an adverse reaction to management. They were doing so many people wrong and I just couldn’t bear to stand by and allow them to FUDGE people over. I became the “people’s voice”. I scheduled meetings with the Vice President, Senior Vice President and the CEO of the company to voice my concerns for the department and for my fellow co-workers. I have officially made myself a target at this point I imagine.
I do believe that some good came of these meetings. I believe that my ideas and suggestions were met with open minds and some courses of action were taken as a direct correlation to my standing up for what is right. Unfortunately, while all this is going on, my spirit is still being contaminated. I am at that point described early on. I hate waking up in the morning, knowing I have to spend 8-9 hours at a place that doesn’t appreciate me, underpays me, and is morally corrupt. It takes every bit of energy within me to make it through an entire day without leaving early for some reason or another.
The icing on the cake or rather the nail in the coffin came early one Tuesday morning. Fed up with the antics of my new manager, I offered my resignation. Mind you, I did not have another job lined up. I am a single mom with TWO growing boys, a mortgage, and a car note, with little to no help from their fathers. Yet, in that moment, my peace of mind and protecting my spirit was more important than remaining at a job that served no purpose other than to BARELY pay my bills. I was back in my house, it was fully furnished, so the initial need had been met. I had some money in my savings account and so I started planning out the rest of the year, figuring out how I could make it and how long could I survive without a job.
My pride would not allow for me to stay in a place that was filled with so much hate, envy, and vindictiveness. It was time for me to move on; and that is what I have done. Was it the right decision? Was it the best decision? In the moment that I decided to leave, it was the best decision, because I know in my heart that had I stayed, I would’ve gotten fired at some point. I believe that right is right and wrong is wrong and I refused to stand by and allow good people to be done wrong by people in higher positions; and I also refused to be used any longer.
Ultimately, I chose me. I chose my sanity. I chose my happiness. I chose my peace of mind, and honestly, there hasn’t been a day that I have regretted making that decision. I am 1 month and 1 week into my separation from that toxic environment and my bills are paid, my kids are fed, and my 17-year-old is just realizing LAST WEEK, that Mama doesn’t have a job anymore. I would say that means I am doing a pretty good job of holding it together for my family.
Choosing to leave a toxic work environment, without having another source of income lined up, is a tough decision to make. Weigh your options and do what is best for you in the end. I googled some articles that could provide clarity and more information for anyone struggling with making this decision themselves.
14 Signs Its Time To Leave Your Job
When You Should Quit Your Job Before Having Another
I hope you enjoyed my first “real” blog. Let me know your thoughts.
With Love & Respect,
My 8-year-old son, who is very perceptive, told me a couple times before I quit, “Mama, McDonalds is hiring, you can work there if you need a new job.” 😉