Alpha tip of the day: When talking to strangers or people you don’t interact with often – act as if they are a friend. Don’t make conversations business transactions of get in and get out. The art of being alpha is learning how to connect with all types of people. Smile. Ask how people are. Be warm and friendly. Listen. Even if you don’t want to. Being alpha isn’t a part-time job.
Today, I want to share with the story of when I decided enough was enough and “I quit.”
“Jobs are not supposed to be fun. That’s why they’re called jobs!”
How many times have you heard this in your life?
It’s a common phrase told by people that hate their jobs. And they try to feed you this information so you accept it. And once you accept it as true, it supports their belief that it must be true as well and they are right to think this way.
But they are wrong.
It depends on what you’re doing and who you’re working with.
- If you were really doing something you were passionate about or something you would want to do in your spare time, it wouldn’t feel like a job.
- If you were working with people that you liked or were people you admired and wanted to be like, you wouldn’t dislike your coworkers.
Not all of us are so “lucky” though to have such jobs, people say…
But it’s not luck that allows some people to enjoy their jobs while others are miserable. It’s called not settling.
If you don’t like who you are or what you’re doing or the people you have to see and interact with on a daily basis and you aren’t actively doing anything to change this – it’s because you have settled.
How I Think
I’ve always thought of myself as pretty cool and smart (maybe even bad ass). Even when I wasn’t cool and I wasn’t that smart, I still thought I would be cool and smart one day. And I wasn’t going to settle for anything less. I strived for this and HATED the feeling of being average.
So when I got a new job in NYC (not my first job), I was excited…then pissed.
See, this new company I was at had a bunch of average people. Average in the sense that –
- They were okay with just getting by
- They were okay with not being the smartest person in the room.
- They were okay with dressing like shit.
- They were okay with just making average salaries.
- They were okay with just having a job.
I was surrounded by losers. And not just losers in the sense that “oh we loss, let’s step up our game next time.” But losers as in “oh we loss and I’m definitely okay with that!”
For a while I just put in my time. I figure, hey, just stay here for a little while since the economy is depressed. When things get better, I’ll make a move.
But the longer I stayed in this environment surrounded by people that thought like beta males, the more frustrating it got. Their ways of operating caused me to change how I did my own work. I went from managing a portfolio in excess of $100 million to having to tell someone my everyone move before I did anything because that person was so scared something would go wrong.
- I had to hear stories like this one guy telling someone else “yea my son tried to rush a fraternity…he went to one event and they didn’t invite him back.” If this is you – read my How to rush a fraternity post. Note to self: Make sure my son is not a loser
- I had to listen to someone always talk in envy about how other people made so much money.
- I had to watch someone eat hummus and crackers every single day because she was trying to pinch pennies
- I had to listen to someone take out his bad days on other people because everyone shitted on him and his dumbass ideas
- I had to watch unqualified underachievers get hired for new positions because unqualified underachievers were doing the hiring
I was surrounded by beta males and I was not okay with this.
As the days passed, I got angrier and frustrated.
How could this be my life?
I studied hard. I worked at some of the finest establishments in the world. I had a top flight business degree. I spent so much time investing in myself to become the best I could be. And this was definitely not the best.
But then I realized what the problem was.
Even though I said I was not okay with this environment, I was. If I wasn’t, I wouldn’t be there.
I decided even though being around people that were holding me back, I was actually okay with it. If I wasn’t, I would have been long gone.
How do I know this?
Because if you really want something bad enough, you can make it happen. But if you accept life as it is, you wait for life to happen.
I was waiting for life to happen to me. Waiting for opportunities to present themselves rather than seeking them.
So for the next week I observed my situation a little more closely.
I realized I really hated coming to this environment every day. I was smarter than the people I worked with. I was too cool to associate with these betas. I had goals and dreams no one at this company could understand or think was actually achievable. I looked at the people in the office and knew these were not the people I would choose to hang out with outside of work.
They were all betas.
So I decided it was time to make a change.
Just like that.
Once I knew my environment was toxic and the people I started to surround myself with were not good for my mentality and couldn’t really help me get to where I wanted to be, I made a change.
Quitting that job, although scary because of the loss in cash flow, is still one of the wisest decisions I’ve made in my life.
The people I worked with were holding me back. They limited my potential by not allowing me to do what I was capable of doing. They only wanted me to do what they were capable. They thought like beta males – people pleasers, just get by, don’t speak out of turn. They were taking away from my happiness in and outside of work.
By changing environments or getting out of that toxic one, I was free again. I was energized and excited about the possibilities again. I was able to stop thinking negatively about how I disliked this and that, and focus on the things I wanted to do. I was able to place myself in an environment where I could thrive with individuals that would challenge me and motivate me.
Since I’ve quit. I’ve done more of what I want and less of what other people want. I’ve made more money than I did working with betas. And since I’m around better people, I’m thriving again. I’m coming up with more ideas. I’m pushing limits and taking risks. I’m focused again.
The Point of All of This
Quitting can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people. To me it meant changing my environment and the people in it.
I’m not asking you to quit your job. I’m not asking you to defriend everyone you know. I’m not even telling you your job is bad.
What I’m asking you to do is evaluate the environment you are in.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Am I proud of what I am doing?
- Do I admire the people I am surrounded by?
- Do they make me better or bring me down?
- If I didn’t know these people I associate with, would I want to know them?
- Have I settled or is this what I wanted my life to be like?
If you answer no to too many of these questions then you need to figure out if quitting your environment and finding a new one is right for you.
Things You May Want to Consider Quitting if You Have the Desire to Do Better
- Your current job
- The people you consider peers or friends (if they bring you down or hold you back)
- Bad relationships (socially and professionally)
- Investments that are going the wrong way
- Habits that negatively affect your health
Quitting is never easy. There’s a lot of risks and uncertainty with quitting. But sometimes, quitting can be the best thing you ever do for yourself.
It was for me.
Life’s too short to be in a bad environment that holds you back from living up to your potential.
Be Alpha. Forever.