But Leap is not a how-to book. Leap shares the feelings and emotions of leaving your job with no plan in place.
Not only did Vigeland leave her job. It was a great job with money and fame to boot. But that’s the key. Vigeland did have a network. So while she had no plan B, she had connections. And a spouse who was still bringing in a full time income.
This book does not tell you how to build a plan B or even how to sew your parachute on the way down. It does not tell you how to live with NO family income. It does not tell you how to create the life of meaning you seek. However it does share the emotions and thoughts that come with changing jobs and careers.
Leaving a job whether by choice, chance, or push raises a whole lot of questions about yourself and your abilities. This change does not wipe out your history. It does not wipe out your skills and abilities. You need to discern the difference between your job and your talents.
In that way the book lets you know you are not alone in thinking, “Did I just make the biggest mistake of my life?”, “I just quit. Quitters are losers. I’m a loser?” These questions can make you doubt your own sanity. Lots of people feel this way when they leave a job, and it takes time to adjust.
There is a practical section in Leap sharing ideas on money (you’ll have less), on what to do with your time (you’ll have more), how you will dress, and how you will relate to your loved ones. You now have much more freedom in making the choices for yourself and what you are going to do.
Vigeland goes into the lure of returning to the work that you’ve left in great detail. Each person will handle this challenge differently and the main point is that it is up to you to determine what is success and meaning to you. Many examples are given focusing on building a life with impact.
In Vigeland’s own words: “What I hope I’ve done here is give you a sense of what it’s like to leap and what you can expect from the experience.” You can leap. You can do it and your life will carry on.
I give Leap two out of five stars. Leap did not fulfill the promise of its title or subtitle. It was a memoir not a how to book. It does not apply to most people in most employment situations. This is the story of how Vigeland coped with leaving her job on a national radio program. Very few of us are at the top of our profession or career and decide to change horses in mid-stream.
I know. In my life I have made that leap three times. The emotions, fears, and thoughts are all there but it is you and you alone who can decide to leap. Once you’ve leapt then you need to move forward with your life. I’ve been there and looking back doesn’t help. You may not need a plan but it is your life and you are the only one who can live it.
In regards to helping you make the decision of whether to leap or not, how to leap, developing a plan B, or any other career move there are better books available.
If leaping is in your career plan, as a woodturner, make sure these three things are in place:
- be debt free
- save an amount equal to six months expenses
- be making an income of 2/3rds of your living expenses from your turning
More about this in a future post.
Disclaimer: I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.