Singer Morris Day of Morris Day and the Time, a successful 80’s R&B Group, popularized the (para)phrase: “….you don’t have to go home, but you’ve got to get the hell up out of here!” Albeit crass, this directive perfectly illustrates the call to bold departure.

But leaving isn’t always so easy. For many of us high-achievers, we root our value in our resilience.

Moreover, without a clear strategy to hear and heed a call to depart, we can overstay our time. We can end up seated at a table that is no longer serving us, and actually starving us. In my religious tradition, I believe that this concept was at the root of Jesus’ controversial exchange with the woman begging from crumbs from her master’s table. Jesus initially refuses to grant her bread as a way of asking her to dig deep and really examine whether that the table where she chooses to stay seated will ultimately feed her.

Unfortunately, I know about overstaying my time. So I offer here 3 strategies that after some painful experiences I’ve found useful in hopes you will too in case you may be hearing the call to depart. The strategies are: read the signs, reckon with your pride, and respond from a centered position of boldness.  I’ll talk about strategies 1 and 2 in this post.

Read the Signs

Are important relationship milestones repeatedly slipping your mind, like anniversaries and birthdays? Are you showing up to events later and later, or you are more and more fatigued doing activities that used to bring you joy and energy when there appears to be no immediate physical cause? Have you started making repeated mistakes at work you wouldn’t otherwise make? Is your work being more closely supervised? Are your requests for accountability from people who should give it met with accusations of your being angry and bitter? Or have you been told to be satisfied with a positive review, outcome, or raise you “just got”?

These sorts of experiences are signs, callings that it may be time to depart.

But what next?

Reckon with your Pride

I used the phrase “call to depart” intentionally. Callings, or urgings, lead you into something for a period. This means that you will likely be leaving something else that was comfortable. So, the call to depart just might feel painful and uncomfortable. Yet as great a motivator as pain should be, our pride immediately kicks in.  As high achieving folks we can be less inclined to embrace the uncomfortable truth evidencing a disconnect between our values and our workplace or relationship values, instead choosing to believe that our resilience mandates that we muscle through the disconnect.  Even when it won’t ultimately serve us.

But resilience does not require us to stay put simply because the pain we know is better than the future we don’t know. When we read the signs and reckon with our pride, we can acknowledge when our seat at the table is of decreasing value. We can recognize e a divinely orchestrated disconnect when it appears. And we can do this before a write up or “the talk.”

Stay tuned for the next post, where I’ll talk about strategies for responding to a call to depart from a centered position of boldness. Corporate Consulting + Life Design services of NLJGroup can help you achieve bold new outcomes in the way you lead, love, and live. Contact us today, and share this blog post with someone else!