What You Give Up (& What You Gain) When Leaving Corporate AmericaApr 25, 2022
Today, I’m going to address something that people frequently fail to talk about. This revolves around what to do about your benefits when you leave corporate America. There are things that you have to let go of when this happens, but I want to bring a new perspective on those items.
While I don’t have all the answers, I do think this will make you think differently and can address some of the fears that you have when you consider quitting your 9 to 5.
Giving Up Your Corporate Income
A tough pill to swallow when you leave your corporate job can be leaving that income. That income is guaranteed, and when you start your own business, that is not necessarily the case. It can be jarring! But remember - that money is replaceable. I know this from experience.
When you’re working in corporate America, your eggs are all in one basket. You have a salary cap and it’s hard to make a considerable amount more. But on the other hand, when you work for yourself, you can sign more clients and give yourself an automatic raise. This will happen regularly and then, you’re tied to the success of each individual client. If one of these clients goes under or leaves, they’re replaceable, so you don’t have to worry too much.
In your own business, you can grow your income to be as comfortable as you want. You really have the power there, which is an amazing thing.
What About Health Insurance?
Health insurance is another thing that can be fear-inducing when it comes to leaving your corporate job. I was there, too. But -- there are other options. The first thing to consider is whether you can be added to your spouse’s plan.
If that’s not an option, consider shopping the marketplace to get on your own plan. There are options out there — and you may even be surprised by how affordable some of those options are. Yes, it can be tricky to figure out, but it is feasible.
When this happens and you have options in front of you, figure out how many clients you need to sign to cover the costs. I call this “client math.” It may be more expensive than what you were paying for your insurance through your corporate job, but remember that you also have the added ability to earn more money.
Keeping Up With a Retirement Plan
Another common fear people have surrounding leaving their 9 to 5 is losing their retirement plan. This is actually a simple one. You can start your own! Start by maxing out your Roth IRA. As your business grows, you can open up a small business retirement plan. This is totally possible to do for yourself.
I recommend doing this with ADP and getting in touch with them. They can help you walk through your options and allow you to ask questions. When you contribute to your own account, I can tell you it is hugely empowering!
What You Gain When You Leave Your Corporate Job: The Bottom Line
Besides leaving a lot behind with your corporate job, you actually gain SO much. Here are some of the things I’ve gained since starting my own business and kissing my 9 to 5 goodbye:
- Unlimited PTO
- The freedom to set your own calendar
- The ability to hire things out
- The chance to set your own hours —no more alarm clock!
- More presence in your life and with your family
- More time -- no more commuting!
- The chance to choose your own benefits
I know that this can be scary, but know that you can come out on the other side of it with a life that’s better than what you had working in corporate America, as well as a LOT more freedom.
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