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How Making a Career Change Helped My Depression

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I know firsthand what it’s like to walk away from your dreams. I recently decided to leave my 21-year life as an entrepreneur to find other opportunities that were more consistent in pay and less stressful. I know, working for someone else is stress in and of itself. But when you have to wake up and hunt for your food versus going to the grocery store and buying it, you might not mind that little bit of stress as much.

So when I decided to end my entrepreneurial career I hit rock bottom with my depression. I had no desire to get out of the bed, I laid on the couch all day, and I ate. Normally I am not a huge eater when I get depressed, but I ate this time around because I still had to maintain my medical regimen.

The weight added on, my eyes were tired from watching so much television and the projects that I hadn’t completed before I decided to end my career were still waiting for me. But I did not care. I had no will to win because I was going into territory that I hadn’t made my mark in. You know what happens when you give up but still have bills to pay? The bills still need to be paid. Sigh — because even with knowing that, I had no will to sit in front of my computer and make things happen for myself. My entrepreneur spirit had given up its own ghost. I had TKO’d myself.

Luckily, the proverbial dog was still in the fight and I had the will to win in my new lane. If anything, I was determined to not allow my depression to win over my life. I wanted more than what I was settling for, and I wanted more than what I allowed myself to have in the past. I was hungry again, even though I was very much depressed. I still didn’t want to be an entrepreneur but something more … a teacher. I wanted to be around young minds who were eager to learn and some who aren’t. I knew this path would help me fight my depression daily because they needed me more than I needed myself.

Here’s what I did to change from depression to motivation:

1. Applied for the local school districts for substitute teaching and other classroom related positions.
2. Applied for various certifications in teaching to help prepare for a permanent position.
3. Brushed up on my skills to apply to my position as a teacher.
4. Found joy in each assignment.

Teaching for someone fresh out of college can be difficult, but for me, having the years of being an entrepreneur has made it the best experience. The students deter my depression because I am eager to help them. They help me see the joy in the simplest things. I look forward to having my own classroom because I can create memories for students year round.

If your depression from your job or lifestyle is weighing you down, then I suggest that you consider making a change. Changing your environment is oftentimes better than good … it’s a spiritual connection.

Photo by Diana Simumpande via Unsplash.
Originally published: January 8, 2020
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