Leaping Forward to New Heights and Ultimate Freedom (With My Notice of Resignation Today)

It is far better for a man to go wrong in freedom than to go right in chains. – Thomas H. Huxley

1 day.

8 hours.

480 minutes.

28,800 seconds.

All in a blink of an eye. And this is just one day for a standard 9-to-5 job, working an average of 8 hours. Multiply this by 5 days in a week, 50 working weeks out of a year. And how many years? Oh, that’s right. A lot.

Ask yourself this: are you really, and I mean really, truly happy in your life? Doing what you are currently doing? Do you justify to yourself that this is just how you will survive? That the work you hate to do is a necessary evil in order to make ends meet? That it is the only surefire way to a steady income, a decent retirement savings plan or a pension, a respectable job as a respectable citizen of the world?

If you say yes, then I’ll believe you. But the moment you put your head to your pillow and a sinking feeling is felt deep within the crevices of your parched soul … you realize that you can lie to me, you can lie to your friends, you can lie to your family, you can lie to your spouse and children, you can lie to your boss and coworkers … but you cannot lie to yourself.

Do not let the fire die within you.

You cannot deceive the one person you need to face day in and day out. The one that looks back at you in the mirror. The one whose eyes barely flicker with the fire that is slowly being left unattended, a fire that is indeed, slowly dying.

Is this an exaggeration?

No. It is not.

It is not only the many folks whom I come across on a daily basis whose sullen and emotionless expressions just screams at me, indicating they are incredibly depressed about their lives, where they are at, what they are doing, why they are doing all this, and how they will never get out, but it is also the worldwide epidemic of status quo adherers.

Do something challenging and unconventional and then you’re scorned at. You’re teased constantly about it. Until the teasing becomes harsher. And more bitter. The more unconventional thing that you’re doing, the worse it can get. Believe me. I understand this.

You are not alone.

But also understand this. Freedom fighters are all around you.

They sit next to you on the train. They serve you at your corner coffee shop. They are the artists whose paintings you’ve come to see at the local art gallery viewing. They are your coworker in the cubicle next to you. They are your backpacking and couchsurfing brother, your tri-lingual sister. They are your next door neighbor. And they can be you.

Freedom can be yours, if you so choose it to be yours.

Fear not failure. Fear not success or abandonment.

If you fear that you’ll fail before you’ve even leapt, you will have never known what your life could have been.

Stop wishing you could have done this. Stop daydreaming about how you would do things all over again, if you could only turn back the hand of time. And please, stop your lottery-winning fantasies. It is all an illusion.

Start living, in the now, right here, at this moment. By doing what you love to do, in a way that is positively impactful in this world we live in, in the community you are an influence in.

Leaping Forward, Resignation In Hand

And that leads me to my decision that today, November 1, 2010, I have decided I will no longer be unhappy in a situation that I very well can prevent and get out of. I may not have had this kind of opportunity to pursue freedom so abundantly and freely if I lived in a different culture, a different country with a different government.

And so with freedom of choice comes accountability of your own life. Your own actions. Your own paths to happiness.

My resignation handed in, I leap forward to new heights and ultimate freedom. And in just a matter of a few weeks, I step away from the corporate troughs of treacherous confinement and into the grassy fields of sweet, sweet freedom.

I, Nina Yau, will finally be free.

View Comments

  1. This sentence gives me so much hope: I, Nina Yau, will finally be free.nnI’m so happy for you and can’t wait to see where this leads. You rock, girl!!!

  2. Nina Yau says:

    Thanks so much, David!!! I was shaking with excitement right before going into my boss’ office and right afterwards. But during? Calm as can be. It was such a crazy feeling!!

  3. Nina Yau says:

    Thanks so much, David!!! I was shaking with excitement right before going into my boss’ office and right afterwards. But during? Calm as can be. It was such a crazy feeling!!

  4. Mark says:

    Rock on Nina!!! Congratulations on the the new found freedom or for having the guts to take the leap!nn”If you fear that youu2019ll fail before youu2019ve even leapt, you will have never known what your life could have been.”nnYou are living a life without regrets. Let the freedom let your creative energy explode! n

  5. Mike Donghia says:

    Way to go Nina! Just mentioned you in my post today :) nnCan’t wait to hear all about your *new* life!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Congratulations Nina. I’ll tell you what I tell most people when they question my sanity(something that happens alot). “Ordinary lives are for ordinary people. Extraordinary lives for extraordinary people. I was never meant to be ordinary.”

  7. says:

    Congratulations, Nina! Looking forward to more post-resignation posts, and where it leads you.

  8. Colin Wright says:

    Congratulations Nina :)nnBig step, and now the world is your oyster! Way to leap!

  9. Mars Dorian says:

    congrats Nina !nIt must have been a difficult decision (or not), jumping into uncertainty now ! nBut it’s so exciting – you are facing endless opportunities now !nThe world really is your oyster, now build something beautiful inside !

  10. Congrats, Nina! Very big day for you. Can’t wait to see what’s in store for you next. We’ll all be watching. :)

  11. Jersmith22 says:

    Nina I’m really glad to hear this! I hope that you go out and do the things that you are truly interested in. Good for you!

  12. Colleen (365lessthings.com) says:

    Hi Nina,nI did this recently myself. I needed time out to try to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up. I am 45 years old so it is about time I worked out the answer to that question. Three weeks later my 19 year old son had a tragic cycling accident and has a serious brain injury. When I prayed for a new direction in my life this wasn’t what I had in mind but I sure am glad I don’t have a lousy job to deal with and that I have plenty of time to be with him. When things settle down for him I will continue the pursuit of a fulfilling future. I wish you luck with yours.

  13. Bo says:

    So proud of you, Nina!

  14. Carrie says:

    wow, congratulations!!!!! go girl, and don’t ever look backwards!!

  15. JJ says:

    Congratulations, Nina!

    You did exactly the thing I tried to do but “couldn’t” due to my financial situation at present. Thanks for showing us how to do it. I hope to be following in your footsteps soon!

    All the best,

  16. Cara Stein says:

    You go! Fly, fly fly! I’m on a countdown to this myself. Kudos to you for doing it now.

  17. [...] latest post has her dropping out of corporate life to forge her own path and I am very, very pleased for [...]

  18. Congrats Nina! I made a leap like that a few months ago and am happy with my freedom and decision. Good Luck – Look forward to reading about your journey!

  19. Rob says:

    Ahh, Congratulations! When you said ‘Fear not success or abandonment.’, that really struck a chord with me. I’m go through these phases of spending some days pursuing my dream of location independence and complete freedom, and other days I say to myself ‘one day, just one day, you’ll realise you NEED to start in the rat race. You can’t bum around like this forever, you won’t achieve anything without that job, like everyone else has’. But fortunately, it’s bloggers like you that keep that fire alive within me, so Thank You for that :)

  20. Brett says:

    Awesome, awesome, awesome, awesome. nnMy hope is that by learning from you (and everyone else in this community), I will never have to “break free” – because I already am free. nnOne question, though – do you think you have to ‘pay your dues’ in The Soul-Sucking System of Doom (AKA corporate America) before we can get out, our should I just stay out of it, no matter what? Interested to hear your thoughts.

  21. El says:

    Frickidy, Freakin, Awesome Nina!rnrnI remembered handing in my first resignation letter for a company I had been with over a decade and I’ll tell you it had all the feelings that make living so amazing! I was as scared as I have ever been, yet filled with the excitement of a four year old on Christmas Eve! rnrnThat day and time is burned into my memory as it will be for you. This is the day you CHOSE to take a stand and live the life you want. I applaud you and look forward to your future posts.rnrnOn a side note, since your unemployed you going to post more frequently;-)!rnrnEric

  22. Dale says:

    Bold move, Nina; well done! Best wishes to you :)

  23. Chase Night says:

    Congratulations, Nina! Just found your blog through Everett Bogue’s. Will be catching up on all I’ve missed so far. :)

  24. Matt says:

    Inspiring Nina! You are in your element now and nothing can hold you back. Really looking forward to seeing the great things you are cooking up.

  25. Joe Hughes says:

    Very inspiring! Thanks for sharing. I found you through BIT,

  26. Anonymous says:

    I found your post refreshing and along the lines of what my blog is all about. Living a Gutsy life. Good for you.

  27. Naturally Single says:

    congrats on your choice! I’m sure it will open many wonderful new doors for you.

  28. says:

    You are such an inspiration Nina. What a beautiful and provocative piece this is. Freedom is expressing who you really are; and who you were born to be. Nothing is more important than that. So happy for you :) Namaste.

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