I'm quitting my awesome job. I've read blog posts like this and thought "why are you quitting if it's so awesome" and I've got the same answer as them - sometimes you've just got to move on.
This has probably been my favorite job of all. I've learned so much about technology, I was given loads of freedom to do experiments and learn. My outbursts were quickly forgiven. The people were relaxed and fun.
So what went wrong?
If you've read my blog at all you know I have to deal with depression and I have just been struck with a pretty heavy dose. One morning I couldn't go to work anymore, instead after hating myself for hours I basically bolted and ran for the forest. Okay I drove my car, but still went for the forest. Which is where I'm writing this post from.
This is what I need more of and I'm going to aim for it. Nature. Travel. Just stuff I actually like doing. Letting my impulsiveness run havoc. I've been wanting to leave Tallinn for years and having jobs have kept me here. Now is the time to change.
Other than my instability there were a few things that frustrated me for a long time and helped me make up my mind about quitting.
The non-founding founder
I'm a startupper. Meaning I think like a founder, I can't help it. But having no equity meant not wanting to put my full effort in. I need to be successful at whatever I do so the whole being an employee situation was wearing heavily on me. Wasting my potential feels like slowly dieing. Sometimes I thought "fuck it" and went on anyway only to be met with "this doesn't work with our approach". We just thought in a different way. This wasn't quite my place.
For a long time my solution was to take on small responsibilities that didn't have too much of an impact where I could still satisfy my curiosity. Eventually I was given menial tasks based on what I seemed to like to do. Meaning I failed to communicate that what I do is innovate and not do any one particular thing. Totally not an easy thing to communicate, so not anyone's fault I got fed up. In any case my need to be creative wasn't met.
In the end I can't really think of anything that I really helped the company do beyond what any employee can do. I'm replaceable. I didn't meet my own expectations. Maybe the company wasn't right for me? Perhaps I just suck and I don't even deserve to have equity? Whatever the case I'm wearing myself down for nothing.
There's nothing in it for me
My goal has always been financial freedom. Literally why I learned programming in the first place was to release the killer app that was going to make me rich. That never happened and the bunch of startups I failed at didn't take me there either. I eventually wanted stability. That's why I have a job now.
Stability didn't come however. Turns out I can't force myself to be "just an employee" and putting loads of effort in just to make someone else's company succeed does not make me happy. I know I can make it myself. After a year of having a job all I've got to show for it are some savings and investments. I'm ready to plunge out and get frustrated at my own startups again.
Just to clarify options in this company has been a promise for years, but with no agreement, details or plan it may as well not exist. The salary was great though, but from a startups perspective (less than 10 people) I would cut wages and give proper options immediately - it would lengthen the runway and motivate the workers. But whatever, not my beef anymore.
I just couldn't handle it
Just to be clear I have faith that the company is going to be very successful and they're making great headway. They are making a lot of correct decisions, I don't have to agree with them all. In the end of the day it's me who couldn't make my own dreams be fulfilled here. Being one with a strong vision I need to try new things.
My choice is not so much out of boredom or disagreement, but my mental state breaking down and forcing me to think critically about the situation. I am but a slave to what my heart says it wants. People have said I'm brave. Really I'm just scared of what may happen otherwise.
Where do I go from here?
I didn't expect this to happen so there's no plan. In the general sense I'm going to just see where this goes. I've got some reserves to live off of. Here's a few ideas to start myself off.
It's hard to start a company, but after 10 failures I'm still game. I get inspired by ideas that keep coming back. There's one that's been lurking around for a while. Need to try it out. I'm not new to this so let's assume it will fail.
With free time comes chances to do stupid shit. Like have a garage event for a whole week. I'm going to make that happen.
I keep putting this off. There's always a reason to cut a trip short. But I'd really like to see active communities and make a documentary about alternative schools around the world. Education and communities I believe are an important cornerstone in humanity. Learning about these is super exiting.
My heart is also calling for a home. But being the unstable idiot that I am a pimped out van is probably the best solution, with which I can also travel. If I can figure my expenses out, it's definitely happening.
Assuming my startup will fail I'm hoping to get project based opportunities. For about a month or two at a time. For example the cryptocurrency scene has presented quite a few opportunities so far, wouldn't mind digging deeper into that code.
I clearly am not a job person, but there are still a few companies that have grasped my attention. My passion is education though so for sure I'll be a teacher at one point (again).
In any case I'm aiming to live life as it comes. Being a developer I shouldn't get into too much trouble with money. I also have no family. Yet. So why not. If all else fails I know I can hang out with my family or friends in the forest for quite some time.
Subscribe to Krister's coding adventures
Get the latest posts delivered right to your inbox