Thursday, January 31

Working Is For Losers

As some of you are aware or have already guessed, today is my last day at my current workplace. I've been here for almost four years now, my longest ever job (albeit out of two), and so I think I have a right to feel a bit poignant.

Although it wasn't my first job, it was my first that wasn't a technology start-up. This meant professionalism and exposure (but still no suit) and nods of approval when you answer people when they ask what you do for a living - well those who actually knew that a hedge fund had nothing to do with gardening anyway.

You could say that I've had my formative years, work-wise, in this place. It has set the benchmark of what I expect from a workplace in terms of the people and atmosphere. It's also spurred on some other more unrelated things in my life too, from the meeting of new friends socially to the participation in new activities - this is where I first started blogging and developing my overall writing style too. Overall I've had a brilliant time and have been very lucky to have been working here.

So why, then, am I leaving?

Before the 16th of November, my future had been defined. The simple act of handing in my notice changed that - all of a sudden I could be anywhere or anything in six months' time. I could be a bum, a millionaire, a celebrity or just something in between all that. It's a good feeling being able to erase your future like that - perhaps I'll look back at this point and say this is where the rest of my life had begun.

The liberating and exciting feeling I've had since then has already opened my mind to new possibilities and made things happen that wouldn't have otherwise. The freedom of not having a path set has opened up many more and is exactly why I did what I did.

Perhaps I'm being idealistic, but I truly believe that any career I hold should have me excited on a Monday morning. I don't even think I need more dollar to be happy; it's not like I'm a big spender anyway. I think at this point in my life career is more than just a means to an end so it has to be something special.

Quitting without securing job has been seen by a reasonable many as being a pretty crazy move. This behaviour is nothing new though - I turned down the "prestigious" Ilford County High in order to go to the less impressive Leyton Sixth Form College. I left uni without employment, rejecting a solid offer from Deutsche Bank on the way out. And I took an easy three months off after my last place went belly up without worrying about getting a new job as soon as possible.

I followed my gut over conventional wisdom and was called crazy in each case. Yet they all turned out okay - better than okay, in fact. In fact my biggest fear currently is how to answer potential rishtas when they ask me what I do for a living; but at least I'll avoid all the gold diggers. A more immediate upshot is that I should have more time to write - I hope to take this opportunity to push more articles this way at least.

So, after eating my last shawarma from the nearby Noura I have sat down to write the last post to this place from the PC I've written the most from. I don't think I'm totally upset or gutted or anything - I'm way too excited about the future for that - but the reality of what I'm doing is beginning to sink in.

Shak has literally left the building.