[vc_row][vc_column][mpc_dropcap preset=”default” font_preset=”preset_1″ font_color=”#333333″ font_align=”center” letter=”Y” padding_divider=”true” padding_css=”padding-right:10px;padding-bottom:10px;padding-left:20px;” margin_divider=”true” margin_css=”margin-right:-5px;”][vc_column_text]es. I did it, I quit work. I left my well-paid day job to make signs for a living. The position even came with a company car that I had to return. In fact, for the last (how do you whisper on the Internet??) 20 years or so, my job has ALWAYS had a company car attached. This is new territory. Unchartered land.
Don’t take my advice
Some folk try to offer advice about the best way to quit work, but just like parenting advice I don’t know how they can. It’s so personal to you and your own situation. Monster have a whole page dedicated to it here. For me, a combination of Jacks & Stripes getting busier and busier (especially with business signs) tempered with a diminishing focus on my day job meant the time was right. I also had one or two classic VW campervans in various states of repair that needed restoration work before being sold. The extra time I was about to gain would soon be used up – and some!
The biggest element for pretty much any person who does it has to be financial. You really need unbreakable confidence that you will be able to quickly make up the difference – unless of course you’re quitting because your side gig income outweighs your main job (lucky you!). I managed to get a mortgage holiday payment from the Halifax to help reduce the stress of the first couple of months. The Money Advice Service has everything you need to know about that right here. Knowing you don’t need to worry about a mortgage payment for 16 weeks is a HUGE weight off your mind. We also went through every monthly outgoing and ditched anything we possibly could, like Sky TV and Beer52!
The first Monday of self-employment was as exhilarating as it was terrifying. It started early – very early. I’d managed to blag a ride from a friend to Bristol (our nearest large conurbation) with the hopes of finding a ‘reasonably priced car’ – hello Top Gear fans – that would safely transport our three-year-old to nursery on a Wednesday whilst also operating as a workhorse on the 6-hour round-trip to White Hart Lane and back to scratch my Tottenham itch. The early start manifested as a 5am pick-up. That meant I was basically abandoned in Bristol city centre from 6am until the rest of the world had made it to their respective Monday mornings.
It didn’t start particularly well. I loitered around the Wetherspoons eagerly awaiting a cheap, music-less breakfast for under a fiver. The doors creaked open at 7am, only to unveil the sadness of a kitchen that was ‘out of order.’ Some poor bugger had rolled over on a Monday morning and thought f*ck it. I understood.
I swiftly referred to Google, emboldened in my search for fodder and found the nearest eatery that was open. It was no Wetherspoons bargain, but it sufficed and the staff there seemed happy. All the while, I was checking out the poor vinyl signage plastered around their café. This was an opportunity for some business! Alas, in spite of first impressions, it was a chain and I would need to contact their head office in Reading. I felt my soul slip for a second, but then remembered that I was actually my own man – I didn’t have to go to pi**ing Reading – I could move on to something more local besides, I had a car to find.
Round the back
I’d done some research over the weekend and so had a couple of potential bargains lined up. I arrived at the first place at 9am precisely. Again, the geezer that I needed to see hadn’t quite started his Monday morning yet. It was a high-end dealership, but the bloke that was dealing with the 13-year-old Audi that had caught my eye worked round the back. You know, out of sight of the proper punters. I didn’t care. I’d already checked out the car and, for a princely sum of £1000 had already deemed it worth every penny. If it started, drove and stopped I was having it. It did, and I did.
[/vc_column_text][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/2″][vc_single_image image=”8616″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/2″][vc_single_image image=”8603″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_column_text]Most importantly, we made it home (the car and I that is) and I didn’t have to take the train. A bloody successful start to this new world. On the first day after I quit work things were looking good and it wasn’t even lunch time yet…… To be continued![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]