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Boredat42's avatar

How do I leave a well-paying job I hate for a lower-paying job I love?

Asked by Boredat42 (61points) July 13th, 2009

I’ve been in this career for more than 15 years, and I’ve just lost the enthusiasm for this field. It bores me now. But it pays well and I have decent job security. My passions lie in areas that don’t pay very well, but are immensely satisfying. I’m going to be 43 this year. If I have to keep doing this for much longer, I think I’m going to go crazy. But how can I justify this change when I have a husband, a mortgage and only 25 years or so left to save for retirement? (We have no children.) Am I having a midlife crisis? Am I just being selfish?

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18 Answers

CMaz's avatar

The decision is personal to yourself.

I did that 3 years ago. I had a job that paid well, but did not have the security I currently have. I do enjoy my current job more also. But…

Sometimes I wish I kept the better paying job. These are tough times.

sap82's avatar

There is nothing selfish about doing what you want to do for a living. Get your finances in order, then tell your husband to prepare for the change. Money is not the only thing. In fact it is nothing. Retirement is a pipe dream that should never have been spawned. Nobody gets a free ride. I don’t care how hard somebody has worked or suffered. Work is how you survive. If you can do something you love, despite a pay cut, and still survive…DO IT!

TabernakAttack's avatar

If you’re 42 you’re past middle age. At this point do whatever makes you happy. Life’s too short to waste time doing things you hate.

skfinkel's avatar

I would leave the job I dislike and move to the one I like with a spring in my step. How lucky for you that you even have a choice to get out of the bad one. Making decisions for happiness anytime in your life is smart—not selfish.

Lightlyseared's avatar

With out a second thought. It won’t be easy but it will be worth it in the long run.

ryanpowell's avatar

One thing to keep in mind is that the new job might not be so great. You could discover in a week that you want to stab your new boss in the face. Then you are fucked.

Personally, I would crunch the numbers and go for it if you can. Life is short, do what makes you happy.

I would rather be poor and happy instead of wealthy and miserable.

Jeruba's avatar

You have thought about how well it pays you to stay where you are. Now think about how much it costs you.

If you feel oppressed every working day, if you hate what you’re doing, if you long for something else, if you spend the rest of your career yearning for what you don’t have and regretting lost opportunities, do you think you will live longer, feel better, and make the most of your time? Or will you lose twice?

Talk to your husband. How much do you suppose he wants you to suffer for money? What would you say if he asked you the same thing?

Mamradpivo's avatar

Two words: “I quit.”

janbb's avatar

Just do it. I left a job at 47 that was killing me and my marriage and didn’t have a job to go to. Four days later I walked into a job that was back in my original profession. I do make less money but I am where I belong – and my marriage is intact.

augustlan's avatar

Obviously you should discuss this situation with your husband before making any drastic decisions. That said, if the two of you can survive on the lower income, I can’t imagine he’d discourage you from pursuing your happiness. It is worth any price, really.

JLeslie's avatar

Make a financial plan, and do a trial run for a year. Live on the lower amont for the next year and put everything else into savings. You will be able to experience living on the lower amount AND you will have saved up some extra cash for the actual transition. Discuss with your husband your goals at retirement age, and make sure it will all be in line.

In the end I say do it. life is short!

YARNLADY's avatar

Take a really good look at your finances before you make the choice. Find the places where you can make some deep cuts, and add up the places you can make multiple small cuts. This will give you the confidence you need.

Do not quit until you have another job lined up.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

Are you qualified to work in the other field, or are you thinking about going back to school in order to work in that field?

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

You learn how to get by with less money. It will require you to change your lifestyle somewhat but the benefit of doing a job you’re passionate about is more valuable than a few thousand dollars per year.

Supacase's avatar

If you can afford the lower-paying job, then do it. 25 more years is a long time to be miserable.

dannyc's avatar

With a classy letter of resignation keeping the doors open..

Darwin's avatar

As others have said, crunch the numbers, and talk to your husband.

That is what I did when my husband became disabled. I discovered that because of previous jobs having been governmental jobs that I could use my time in them to help me qualify for an early pension. I also looked at ways to reduce or eliminate expenses, such as pre-paying our mortgage. I then put a plan into effect that took about two years to complete, and then I retired early from my job.

We aren’t rich but we have what we need and some of what we want. Maybe you can figure out how to do that for yourself.

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