Dream about quitting corporate America? You are certainly not alone. According to a recent LinkedIn Study, almost 70% of US workers plan to leave their jobs in 2023! That’s a significant number of people who are unhappy with work.
Times have changed and the benefits of working for a bigger company are not always there. Stability doesn’t exist in this economic climate. Salaries aren’t keeping up with inflation. Work-life balance is in jeopardy again with companies forcing employees back into the office full time. Finding a true 9-5 is hard to come by and that’s without factoring in a long commute.
The good news is there are always alternatives. You could take your skills and become a consultant or a freelancer giving you flexibility over which jobs you take. If your company is forcing you back to the office, you can switch to an organization with a remote work culture. Maybe you want to try your hand at being an entrepreneur. The opportunities are endless. Working in a traditional corporate setting is not the only way!
If you feel deep down you’re meant to do something beyond your crappy office job, then this post is for you. With a little preparation and strategy, you can make your dreams of exiting Corporate America a reality! Today I am sharing a highly curated list of books to help you prep for your exit strategy!
Quitting Corporate America: Read These Books to Prepare
Quit Like a Millionaire by Kristy Shen & Bryan Leung
First up is, Quit Like a Millionaire. This book is incredibly helpful for anyone who wants to achieve financial freedom without having to launch an app or start a business. Kristy and Bryan were miserable in their corporate jobs. They committed to retiring early by aggressively investing the money they made until they had over $1M. This is a long-term approach but one that anyone can take to build wealth and leave corporate forever. They break their investment strategy down in ways that are easy to understand and implement. If you want to have enough money to have career flexibility or retire early, this book is a must-read!
12 Months to $1 Million by Ryan Daniel Moran
Twelve Months to $1 Million is the perfect book for aspiring entrepreneurs. Ryan Daniel Moran shares his roadmap for how to make $1M in one year by selling physical products. If you are ready to leave the 9-5 grind and work for yourself then this book is for you.
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
I will file, “How to Win Friends & Influence People,” under, “must-read books if you want to be successful.” I love this book for it’s ability to help you excel at dealing with people. If you want to leave corporate America and do something entrepreneurial like starting a small business, then you will need to be comfortable wearing many hats. This includes dealing with a range of people from customers to vendors. This book will teach you life skills that will help you build strong relationships and accelerate your success.
Financial Freedom by Grant Sabatier
Similar to, Quit Like a Millionaire – Financial Freedom is a book to help you to make more money in less time so you can leave corporate America way before retirement age or save enough to take a career break. Grant teaches you how to start additional income streams and optimize your financial health. Another great read for improving your financial health and building wealth from nothing.
Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life
Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett & Dave Evans is for anyone who feels stuck and not sure which direction to go. This book helps you to identify specifically what energizes you and what does not. Read this book before doing something drastic like quitting your job to go back to school. Designing your life will help you to figure out a career that supports your happiness.
Unf*ck Yourself by Gary John Bishop
“Unfu*k Yorself,” is the kick in the butt you need if you are yearning for a different life but can’t seem to make it happen. Gary John Bishop motivates you to take control and ownership of your life and stop wasting time doing things you hate. If you need motivation to leave your corporate job, read this book to light a fire and make a change.
The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod
Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod is a personal development book that will change your life. Elrod shares his approach to creating a positive mindset and healthy habits to set you up for success. Hal experienced significant setbacks in his life. This included being in large amounts of debt from the 2008 financial crisis to later being diagnosed with an aggressive form of Leukemia. He beat all the odds and turned his life around through his morning rituals. He created a balanced life that allows him to spend time with his family. I love this book for its ability to help anyone turn their life around no matter how dire your situation.
How to Quit Corporate America
1. Build a financial safety net
Unless you already have a budding side hustle, start by building yourself a financial safety net. You can be like Kristy and Bryan by staying in corporate long enough to retire completely. If that feels like too much, you could save enough to fund your entrepreneurial ventures. No matter what your goal is, having money in the bank is never a bad thing.
2. Research career options
It’s helpful to identify what you want to do in advance of departing your 9-5. While you are still employed, explore a few potential career options. Research opportunities that align with your interests, learn more about what those day-to-day responsibilities would entail, and figure out what the learning curve might be. Keep in mind, if you select something you’ve never done before it might take time to master your craft.
Want to use your corporate skills to become a freelancer? Research more about what it takes to build your client base and go out on your own.
3. Test the waters
This is an opportunity to uncover what you are truly interested in and also what is sustainable. You don’t have to commit to one thing just yet. You can test a few options and see what works. If something isn’t working, then you can pivot, or explore something new. If you want to leave corporate America and be able to sustain yourself financially, it’s significantly less stressful if you gain some traction before you take the leap.
4. Go all in
Now that you’ve identified and tested a path for yourself, it’s time to go ALL IN and say good-bye to corporate life! From here on out you get to focus on your new career or retirement.
With all of the tips and resources you will learn from these books, quitting corporate America has never been easier. With the right financial planning, strategy and mindset you can be free from the 9-5 grind forever.