I Quit My Job…

On Wednesday I quit my job.

After more than 7 years of being a psychologist, the senior psychologist, a programs coordinator, a provisional psychologist supervisor and various other related roles, it was time to take a massive leap and move on from what I have known.

For anyone who knows me well, it was an unexpected decision and one that was expected to be a while off yet. Yes, it was known that I have embarked on a new direction, having only kicked off my university studies for a Graduate Diploma in Teaching (primary) less than 3 weeks ago. Maybe 2. The past few weeks have been a blur. But I had expected to stick it out til the end of my university study period, which is somewhere between 2-2.5 years.

So why the drastic change of mind?

Unfortunately in many ways I felt I had little other choice. My workplace was no longer particularly supportive of my flexible working hours and part time arrangement. I started to get a bit of pressure from some of the senior management team. Unfortunately the worst of it came from my line manager, who as a mother, I expected more compassion. The decider was when I was told perhaps it was time to choose what is most important – yep, she was referring to my role as mother vs my role at work.

No mother or father should ever be asked such a question. There is no other answer. Being a parent will always come first. But that does not mean you cannot be an exceptional and competent professional also. And I was… I still am in fact.

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So after some events that followed that pushed me to my limit, I sent my resume at random to a few companies I found via Google asking for a flexible opportunity for a part time psychologist. Lucky for me my experience is apparently highly sought after. The following Monday I had several interested parties.

I have chosen at this point in time to go with an organisation that employs independent psychologists to work under our Australian Medicare system, seeing students, teachers and parents in the school setting through GP referral. What stood out most for this role was not simply the benefit of working a school and getting my foot in the door for my future career, starting to build my experience now. No, it was the fact that the owner of this business was a mum. She understood the need for flexible hours, close to home, working as little or as much as suited me. She got it!

There is a bit of paperwork to organise in the lead up, but with my month notice at work, and a further month needed to complete my first university practicum, the timing is good.

Handing in my resignation though, it was tough. It was the first time I’ve ever really had to do it, having only been casually employed previously. But after giving the deputy a bit of a shock, I had a great chat with the director who informed me the door would always be open for someone as hard working and competent as myself. It was just what I needed to hear. Actually, it made the whole thing quite emotional.

Yep, there were tears that day. A little funny really, since I could not stand the place a week before. But it was merely tainted by one or two individuals and some recent events. That does not take away all the good experiences and many good people from over 7 years. For the most part, I have enjoyed my role. But it was the kick I needed to get out of my comfort zone and move forward.

I am excited for what comes next. Although terrified all at the same time. Tuesday comes with a first meeting with one of the managers from the company I will be joining, followed by a meeting with my mentor teacher for my first practicum and the class of year 2 students I will be working with.

What made me certain I had made the right choice though was the fact that I slept fine the night before. I was even calm right up until the moment I handed over my resignation letter. And even following those tears and the realisation that it was actually happening, I slept well again that night. If it was the wrong choice, there would not have been such a sense of calm.

My husband is a little nervous, naturally. I am going from a permanent part time position to contract based, paid per client work. Yep, that makes me nervous too, but thankfully he is also supportive and understanding that I needed to get out. He saw the impact of the last few weeks, months of stress. And he knows better than anyone it takes a lot to cause me stress.

So today starts yet another journey, hopefully full of exciting opportunities, learning experiences and wonderful memories.

Wish me luck!!




19 thoughts on “I Quit My Job…”

  1. Congratulations, Holly. You sound so happy and excited for the months ahead. It’s also good to hear that you’ll have time to focus on your practicum too. Nothing like things falling into place. Contract-based work is definitely more unstable compared to a permanent position, but if it’s that kind of work and opportunity that makes us happy, hey, why not? And contract work is actually as hard to score as a permanent role. Good luck, Holly. You sound on top of things and I have faith that this will still be the case for the months ahead :)

  2. Good luck and I guess congratulations. You have been brave enough to make the right decision for you. How anyone can ask a parent whether they lut their role as a parent ahead of their job role is beyond me. My workplace has been great ever since I went part-time even though I know they regretted agreeing to it – they never said it until I mentioned that I would like to go back full-time at some point. At some point has become September, which makes me a bit nervous but littlest starts nursery then so it should be manageable.xxx

  3. I have three thoughts…
    1 Is what the line manager said to you even legal?
    2 It’s a bit late for the director to say such lovely things when you’ve been pushed to the point of no return and does that person know how you’ve been treated?
    3 I wish you all the best with your new job and your studies. Sometimes it takes something awful for us to have the courage to make a change and then you wonder why you didn’t do it ages ago. I’m sure you’ve made the right decision. Good luck with your prac.

    1. I contemplated complaining but I needed a boot to get out of the comfort zone & didn’t want to damage the relationship with the company through that process. The fight has gone out of me.

  4. Congratulations and good luck! That’s one good thing about psych — working privately whether for yourself or someone else gives you flexible hours. It is scary though as you said going from a permanent position to a contractual one. But if at the moment it gives you the flexibility and the happiness and well, the work-life balance which is so very important, then that’s all that matters! Good luck with the new job and the new direction. Sounds amazing! :)

    1. Thanks so much. With new ventures, a bit of risk is often needed but thankfully the psych degree makes me fairly employable it seems. Looking forward to the new experiences ahead :)

  5. I came across this post after reading your “2 Steps to Stay Organized for Tax Time” post, (Thanks for the info — by the way.) I am appalled that you would be asked to choose between your job or your family. This isn’t something I’d expect to happen in 2014. Many years ago (32 to be exact), I was told that I needed to decide what was more important my job or my child. My three year old daughter was often ill and had been in the hospital with pneumonia. My boss said that I should find someone to take her to the doctor and stay with her if she was ill. I ended up being let go supposedly because they were reducing staff. This was my first “real” job and I was very young. I tried to file a complaint; but had no real proof. It was at that point, I decided to work part time and go to college to get my teaching degree. Other than marrying my hubby, it was the best choice I ever made. I wish you the best of luck as you pursue this new path in life.

    1. Thanks for your comment Linda. It is so sad what companies do their employees at times. I am extremely disappointed by the way my own went after they started out very supportive but I am loving my studies so much already so I think the decision to leave was the best thing for me too. Sounds like sometimes it works in our favour but it is sad it does still happen despite all the fair work regulations.

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