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Deciding If and When to Quit

Rachel Serwetz
Rachel Serwetz
November 22, 2021
Deciding If and When to Quit

The “great reassessment” has made many of us rethink our career paths. Here is a process you can follow to consider key questions and actionable steps so you can make any necessary changes to pursue a career path that is both suitable and meaningful to you.

1. Reflect on current state of career & understand areas for improvement

  • Assess your role — What elements of your role, if any, do you enjoy? What functions, projects, or type of work would you like to do more of?
  • Assess your industry — What elements of the industry, if any, do you align with? What problem areas or topic areas do you find interesting and important?
  • Assess your environment — What elements of the culture, if any, do you align with? What do you need more, or less, of in a work environment?

2. Embracing career change & debunk limiting mindsets

  • Recognize the desire for change
  • How long have you been thinking about a change?
  • How frequently do you think about a change?
  • How intense is the feeling?
  • What do you want/need out of your career?
  • Is your potential being fulfilled?
  • Are you being challenged?
  • What do you need in a career?
  • What do you want in a career?
  • What are the key things missing from your career right now?

3. What are the hesitations holding you back from exploring a change?

  • How can you separate facts from assumptions? Fears from potential?
  • What would you need to embrace, feel, or do to explore your fullest potential? What would it take for you to get to that state?
  • Work with a coach to debunk any limiting beliefs and ensure you’re making decisions grounded with information versus from a place of fear

4. Get comfortable with change

  • Picture the feasibility of a career change and what it might mean for your life
  • Build a support system — figure out what support you need to explore what’s out there
  • Turn uncertainties into questions, get your questions answered, reflect and reassess
  • Take comfort in knowing that you can learn and explore before acting
  • Recognize the benefits and opportunities you may realize if you open yourself up to pivoting

5. Determine path forward

  • Do you need clarity on your ideal career direction / next steps? If so, pursue career exploration
  • Do you have clarity on your direction, but need to pursue a job search? Consider what level of support, guidance or accountability you need to get started
  • Do you have clarity on your direction, but want to decide on an upskilling opportunity? Are you debating graduate school? Usually item 3a is relevant here — ensuring you have clarity on your direction will help you confidently decide on further education
  • Are you on the right path but just need to advance? Can you advance internally or does this require a job search? Consider what level of support, guidance or accountability you need to help you pursue advancement
  • Regarding quitting, most of the above paths forward can be pursued in conjunction with a job, so that you progress and pursue your next steps while avoiding any gaps in your work. But, if you have the ability to quit, it is an option as it would give you more time to pursue your goals.
  • Considering something else I didn’t mention? :) Reach out! team@iamwoken.com

Other questions you can consider if you’re truly debating quitting:

  • What triggered your feeling to quit today?
  • How often does this happen?
  • How bad is it when it happens, 1–10?
  • Is it toxic?
  • Is there room to improve the situation? Is it based on something in your control or out of your control?
  • Have you tried to make these improvements or not yet? If so how long and what have you tried? Is there anything else you can try that could make a dent?
  • How bad are things when those “occurrences” are not happening, in the in between moments? (1–10)
  • Is it a temporary fleeting feeling versus are you seriously debating quitting?
  • What is your financial runway/timeline? Is it possible to quit and support yourself for 6+ months if your job search took that long?

Talk to a coach to work through your reflections and next steps.

Watch a 60 minute webinar on deciding if and when to quit!

Deciding If and When to Quit

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Rachel Serwetz’ early professional experience was at Goldman Sachs in Operations and at Bridgewater Associates in HR. From there, she was trained as a coach at NYU and became a certified coach through the International Coach Federation. After this, she worked in HR Research at Aon Hewitt and attained her Technology MBA at NYU Stern. Throughout her career, she has helped hundreds of professionals with career exploration and for the past 4.5+ years she has been building her company, WOKEN, which is an online career exploration platform to coach professionals through the process of clarifying their ideal job and career path. She is also an Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at Binghamton University and has served as a Career Coach through the Flatiron School, Columbia University, WeWork, and Project Activate.

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