Feel free to e-mail me if you want to share your experience or you are looking for advice: email@example.com.At the time when I was thinking about quitting my job, and afterwards while planning to take one year off to travel, I really could have used the advice of someone who had done the same. So feel free to contact me and I will be more than glad to help.If you are unsure of what you want to do in your life, taking a year off to travel can be a great way to learn more about yourself, discover what you want to try next, and prepare your next career move with time, without the normal pressures from family, friends and society in general.
Following a really sad event and a reassessment of what he wants out of life, Jorge left his job at P&G as assistant brand manager to travel and work his way around the world. He is happier than he has ever been in his life and has shared his thoughts with us below. Thanks very much Jorge - Boa Sorte!
Feel free to e-mail me if you want to share your experience or you are looking for advice: firstname.lastname@example.org.
At the time when I was thinking about quitting my job, and afterwards while planning to take one year off to travel, I really could have used the advice of someone who had done the same. So feel free to contact me and I will be more than glad to help.
If you are unsure of what you want to do in your life, taking a year off to travel can be a great way to learn more about yourself, discover what you want to try next, and prepare your next career move with time, without the normal pressures from family, friends and society in general.
I am currently taking a career gap year to travel and plan my next professional challenge. I spent five months in Jamaica and am currently living in Mexico.
I work as a sales rep at a dive centre of a beach resort in the Riviera Maia. This job is useful to pay my bills while I experience the country.
I work on the beach, with the Caribbean Sea as my daily landscape, wearing shorts and flip flops as part of my uniform. I have to talk with resort clients who are interested in water sports and explain to them the activities and packages we offer. It isn't a difficult job; it simply requires some enthusiasm and people skills.
The pay is good for Mexican standards, I get to dive for free and I see women in bikinis all day long :)
I was an Assistant Brand Manager (consumer marketing) at Procter & Gamble in Portugal. I joined P&G right after graduating in 2007 and held that position for 2 years.
I was working with advertising agencies, developing advertising for different P&G brands in different media, and giving recommendations to the Brand Managers in Spain. It was a job that gave me a lot of responsibilities and allowed me to learn a lot about marketing, advertising and management skills. It was a great experience.
Unfortunately it also meant very long days at work, including weekends to deal with the 100 e-mails I didn't have time to answer or send during the work week. A lot of stress and tight deadlines were involved.
I don't think there was a specific moment; it was a gradual process. But unfortunately there was a tragic event that triggered it, which was the was the death of my mother after 3 months on the job.
In the following months, during the period of mourning, I started seeing the world in a very negative way, and everything that I wasn't feeling good about myself and my life started to feel even worse. At the time I was taking work home on a regular basis after 10-12 hour work marathons at the office, and so I became very cynical about my job and my career. That was when my first thoughts about quitting started to appear, however I realized that I was emotionally unstable and shouldn't take any important decisions with a hot head, and so resisted the negative thoughts.
Finally after some months, I became emotionally stable and optimistic again. However something in me had changed, and from then on I started to analyze my job, my career and my life carefully on a daily basis.
After one and a half years at the company I started to become tired of my job functions and knew enough of the company and marketing career path, to know that there weren't other functions that I would really enjoy doing at P&G.
At the same time, everywhere I looked around, people were flooded with work, taking their laptops home, even on weekends. I realized that was not what I wanted for my life, especially if what I was doing wasn't something I was passionate about. And so after 2 years I decided to quit and do something different.
Before I quit my job I wasn't sure I was going to take a year off to travel. I only knew that I needed to stop for a couple of months to clear my head before I made any major decisions. So I was saving money for the last months that I was working at P&G, having in mind that I would experience a few months of volunteer unemployment to do other activities that I enjoyed.
I talked with friends, family and other people for advice. In the end I decided I wanted to go abroad to travel to exotic destinations for one year, but needed to find a job to pay my bills while abroad.
After a suggestion from someone, my first plan was to work on a cruise ship. That way I could travel to different places with all expenses payed for. So I researched online about the cruise industry and made a big list of all the companies and HR contacts, and sent more than 40 job applications.
Unfortunately I didn't get accepted to any of them, since most of them required previous experience in hotel-related jobs. But I also sent applications to other companies in the tourism industry, and finally got a positive reply from one of them who needed a sales rep in a dive center in Jamaica. Two weeks later I was landing in Montego Bay.
After I quit my job, I was lucky enough to be introduced to someone who quit a prestigious corporate job some years ago and risked his financial security to start his own business. He is an apologist that we should follow our passions and do what we love in life; this was the reason he quit his previous job.
He was the one that advised me to take one year to travel abroad doing odd jobs to pay my bills. According to him that experience would make me realize that I am in control of my life and I shouldn't fear financial insecurity. If I was able to 'survive' that year, I would come back a changed person; a person that knows that he can decide his own destiny, and doesn't let others decide it for him.
Unfortunately at the time I didn't know about Escape the City, so I felt like an alien from another planet because I didn't know many examples similar to mine. Therefore I didn't have much reassurance that the decisions I was taking would lead to happy outcomes; I simply felt it was what I needed to do at the time and followed my gut.
As explained in the previous question, I was lucky to be introduced to a person that really helped me decide to travel after I quit my job. Besides his own experience and advice, he recommended a book called http://www.amazon.co.uk/Work-Your-Around-World--Date/dp/1854584561/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1292235281&sr=8-1" rel="nofollow">"work your way around the world". It's an interesting book.