I'd be happy to chat to anyone who wants to talk things over, please feel free to contact me through either my Facebook www.Facebook.com/stephenridley.official or Twitter @ThisIsRidley
Stephen Ridley escaped Investment Banking to be a musician. 24 hours after quitting his job, he rolled an upright piano into the middle of one of London's busiest streets and started playing. After 1 month he had been offered 9 management deals, and started recording his first album, http://www.stephen-ridley.co.uk/" rel="nofollow">Butterfly In A Hurricane, now on iTunes.
I'd be happy to chat to anyone who wants to talk things over. Please feel free to contact me through either my Facebook http://www.Facebook.com/stephenridley.official" rel="nofollow">www.Facebook.com/stephenridley.official or Twitter https://twitter.com/ThisIsRidley" rel="nofollow">@ThisIsRidley
My day-to-day is unpredictable. I don't know what will come in 3 months, but I know that it will be up to me to make it happen. I love this! Broadly, I divide my time between:
I used to be an analyst in the top IBD team of an investment bank. For all the hype that surrounds this job, the reality is exceptionally long and tedious working hours. People told me this job was all models & bottles. To my disappointment, the stark reality is that the only models are Excel models, and the only bottles are the coke bottles I used to chain-drink to stay awake.
I was a grey person, trapped in a grey world, with a grey future. I looked above me and I didn't see these sharp, shiny, successful men that I imagined I'd one day become by working at an investment bank. No. I saw uninspired, bland, middle-aged men, drearily pushing their crushed souls through another long day of the same old slog.
The whole rat race was draining and insipidly unfulfilling, and even those who 'won' were still rats in a cage made of money. There had to be more to life than this. I wanted passion, I wanted excitement, I wanted to feel alive. Feelings I had once felt and forgotten.
One day I snapped. I became sick of how hopeless and empty I had let myself become. I suddenly went from deflated to restless to angry.
I was angry that I was living a life which brought me no joy, I was angry that I didn't have the guts to spread my wings and take a leap of faith, I was angry that I was too crushed and scared to even have a dream, much less pursue it.
I was sick of reading about people with inspiring lives and not living one of my own. I was sick of money, sick of caring about whether or not the font 'gave the right message' in the pitch book I was working on, sick of having my weekends crushed by another heartless nerd on a power-trip.
My present was intolerable, my future looked bleak. "This is my time" I said to myself! I should be out making great stories to tell when I'm older; stories of which I look back on with fondness and pride. I should step out of my comfort zone and stumble and fall and grow and live. I was sick of being a dreamer, I wanted out.
I didn't really. I was tired of making plans, as the process of doing so allowed my risk averse nature to guide me towards something safe and boring. After interviewing at some other city jobs that didn't excite me, I just walked into the office one day and quit.
I had no idea what I would do, but I had faith in myself. I'd spent 20+ years developing my brain and now it was time to really use it!
A baby doesn't learn to walk by making plans, and reading book after book. A baby learns to walk by taking risk, by stumbling and then having the perseverance to dust themselves off, get up and try again, taking what they learnt from the last tumble! We were all once babies, we all have that inspiring attitude and strength within us.
Somehow we have come to look at tumbles as failures, whereas we ought to see them as an exciting part of the adventure that is life, and a step closer towards learning how to walk. You have to take a leap of faith - faith in yourself. You can do anything!!!
The best bits:
The worst bits: