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I'm starting school in October (its an at-home course) and I want to quit my job so I can focus on my studies. I do plan on going back to work (in general) at some point, but for the time being I'd rather concentrate on getting my schedule down.

 

As time draws nearer to my starting date I'm becoming more and more anxious about actually saying 'I quit'. I have no idea how work people will react, if they'll take it well, call me a traitor, it'll be a really big inconvenience. My parents and friends are telling me just to get over it, but I'm seriously worried I'll have a panic attack in front of my bosses, or that they'll tell me to stay part time and I will just to keep the peace.

 

Does anyone have some advice? I know I need to do it sooner rather than later. At this point it's tempting to get someone else to quit for me.

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As someone who is attempting to complete an advanced degree while working fulltime, I can tell you that if you have the means, quitting work to concentrate on your studies is a really positive thing. 

 

As time draws nearer to my starting date I'm becoming more and more anxious about actually saying 'I quit'. I have no idea how work people will react, if they'll take it well, call me a traitor, it'll be a really big inconvenience. My parents and friends are telling me just to get over it, but I'm seriously worried I'll have a panic attack in front of my bosses, or that they'll tell me to stay part time and I will just to keep the peace.

 

 

The reality is that you can't control how they react. What you can control is how you hand in your resignation.  Although you will more than likely have to have some f2f conversations, I think it's critical that you do this in writing.  The tone of your letter will contribute to the tone of the response you receive, and it doesn't have to be long or complicated.  Totally off the top of my head:

 

Dear ABC

 

Resignation from xyz post

 

While I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at (company/business) and have (accomplished much/learned many things), I have reached a point in my life at which I would like (to pursue/return to) academic studies.  I do not take this step lightly and believe it is critical for my (personal development/individual growth).  I am therefore tendering my (period of time) notice. 

 

I am grateful for the opportunities that were afforded me while working here and wish the (company/business) well in the future.

 

Yours sincerely,

(name)

 

eta a last thought: it's actually just good professional practice to put your resignation in writing.  It shows personal maturity and also respect for the company or business for which you've been working.  And as Melissa said below, do give them notice.  It would be a really big inconvenience if you waited until the very last minute, or showed up on Friday and said you won't be in on Monday. Again, good professional practice.

Edited by MiaB
late thought
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Personally I wouldn't just say 'I quit."  I would put it writing like Mia suggested.  And I Would give them some notice, so they have time to replace your position.  I think it would relaly help, especially if in the future you need a reference from them, it probably will be a more positive one, IMO.

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I was in the same spot a bit over a week ago. Today is my last day at the job.

It freaked me out too.

My boss took it better than I expected, particularly since I wasn't able to give 2 weeks notice and my work group is swamped with work. If they like you, they want what's best for you. If they don't, they still have to act professional about it.

In writing is absolutely the way to go. Most places will ask you to put it in writing if you quit in person. Writing it down takes your emotional stuff out of the picture. If you use email to communicate with your supervisor, it's an entirely appropriate way to quit.

It's going to feel weird. But it's going to be OK.

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I need to quit a job as well. I've been putting it off for so long and it's just causing more problems. I can understand how scary it is! I'll let you know how it goes when I actually get up the courage to do it.

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I often hear about 2 weeks notice being the standard in other countries. It seems totally bizarre to me. Depending on what level you're working at, in my university people have to give a minimum of one months notice. If I tried to quit without giving them notice three months in advance, they wouldn't accept it and there'd be legal and financial consequences because of the employment contract I signed when I started.

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Thank you all for your sweet and useful replies. Am going to write up a letter tonight and try to give it to my boss tomorrow. Is it better at the beginning or end of the day? Hopefully giving them just over two weeks notice will be enough time. I don't have a contract with them, so I don't see why it wouldn't be? Who knows, chefs are tricky. WinterRosie I hope it goes well for you!

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Personally I would give it at the beginning if the day.  I'm not sure why, just was the first thought that came into my head.

 

I guess because you can get a feel for how your boss/manager takes it (accepts it, whatever the word) ... like is he ok with it or not.  If I gave it to my boss at night, I wouldn't know what he is thinking until the next day and that would personally stress me out. 

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Given that I work in a kitchen, I'll try to wait to the end of the day to talk to my boss in private. He's a pretty blunt person, so I'm sure whatever reaction I have is going to be honest. I'm just terrified of freezing up and not being able to go through with it because I'll be too scared :(

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My general personal rule is two week minimum for labor-type jobs and preferably at least a month if not more for professional-type jobs.

 

Many jobs here are non-contractual, mia. For example, I live in a "right to work" state which means that I if I were a wage or salary earning employee, I can be fired at any time for no particular cause, but I am also free to leave at any time for no particular reason.

 

Right now, though, I'm an independent contractor in my job and I have committed to being there until the end of August, 2016. If there were exceptional circumstances (ie my spouse needed care for an illness or injury and I was unable to leave the city), we would have to re-negotiate the contract.

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Given that I work in a kitchen, I'll try to wait to the end of the day to talk to my boss in private. He's a pretty blunt person, so I'm sure whatever reaction I have is going to be honest. I'm just terrified of freezing up and not being able to go through with it because I'll be too scared :(

 

Doing it at the end of the day makes sense if you're working in the crazily busy environment of a kitchen.  One thing that springs to mind is that there is quite a high turnover of staff in the cooking/catering/hospitality industry as people grow in experience and move on elsewhere.  I would emphasise your gratitude for your time there and just stay firm on this being an important next step in your life.  If your boss blusters a bit, then he does - that's his issue, not yours, and try not to let him rent space in your head.  Best wishes, and let us know how it goes!

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I finally quit today (on Friday I saw 'signs' not to quit, which is really just anxiety talk for 'there were coincidences which made me nervous about quitting', and on Saturday I got sent home early) and it went pretty well? To be honest as soon as my (other) boss saw the envelope she knew exactly what it was. Our conversation was pretty much 'is that your resignation letter?' 'Yep.' 'Okay, how many weeks notice?'

 

I gave two weeks notice. I had been planning on more, but I keep procrastinating. Given that a lot of staff there work and go to university they are pretty used to it. Still, although I was definitely internally freaking out and shaking I didn't have a panic attack. So success? Mia, I used your template and it turned out pretty good in the end!

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