How To Tactfully Tell Your Boss You're Quitting (Even If It's A Job You Deeply Loathe)

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Aside from turning in your two weeks' notice, learning how to tell your boss you're quitting without stepping on any toes requires a certain level of tact.

First things first, why are you quitting? You need to get clear in yourself as to why you're leaving your job.

Maybe you received a better job offer. Or, perhaps, your spouse got a new job so your family is moving to another city. Or, maybe it's because your boss is bullying you (in which case, you should also visit human resources).

No matter what, it's best to avoid burning bridges so you can ensure a smooth transition.

RELATED: Thinking About Quitting Your Job? 10 Ways To Know It’s Time To Leave

Here are 9 tactful steps for how to tell your boss you're quitting.

1. Be honest.

Just be honest with your boss. Always take full responsibility for what you say.

Use the "I" statement to express your feelings. Meeting with your boss to let them know you're leaving your job is not a good time to make complaints. This should happen while you're still working.

If you're leaving because of abuse, address your concerns at another time with the HR department. Do not bring this up when you inform your boss you're leaving.

No matter the reason you're leaving, you need to come across as clear, kind, calm, and direct — this will help you to know how to tell your boss you're quitting

2. Be polite.

This is a time to be on your best behavior. Show your boss that you're a class act, even if they aren't. Share with your boss what you learned and appreciated about your time with the company if you have something positive to say.

Remember this is not a time to fight. Keep the meeting as positive as possible.

3. Prepare for the conversation.

An excellent way for you to prepare for the conversation is to write a letter to your boss. Writing a letter will help you to organize your thoughts on paper. Your boss will want a resignation letter from you anyhow.

Before you write the letter, think of what your boss will want to know. They'll likely want to know why you're quitting and when you've decided your last day will be.

They would also appreciate learning, in your exit interview, what might help the next person to shine in the position.

Your company may have a policy about how many days' notice employees must give so you may need to negotiate if you hope to be leaving sooner.

4. Ground yourself.

If talking to your boss is bringing up fear and anxiety, there are some practices you can do to prepare yourself.

Something you can do to ground yourself when you're feeling anxious is to breathe slowly and deeply. Inhale through your nose and breathe out through your mouth.

Take a few minutes to breathe before you meet with your boss.

If you don't already meditate, this might be an excellent time to begin. There are some great apps available for your smartphone that are excellent aids to help you meditate. (My favorite app is called Insight Timer.)

As you're in the midst of change, you need to make sure you're taking good care of yourself. Make sure you get plenty of sleep, eat yummy and nutritious food, and get lots of exercise.

5. Do a trial run.

Practice the conversation with a friend or family member. Speak to the person as though they were your boss to get some practice.

Ask for constructive feedback to find out how you come across. Then, set a time and date to meet your boss. Don't tell them why you want to meet, just that you need to talk.

RELATED: 3 Ways Your Body Is Telling You It's Time To Quit Your Job

6. Make final preparations.

On the day of the meeting, make sure you have a good meal. Take some time to meditate and breathe before you arrive at work. Make sure you get in a few minutes ahead of time so you're not in a rush.

Trust that you'll know what you need to say as long as you prepared yourself well.

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Whatever you do, make sure you don't react negatively. Say what you need to say and leave. If you need to negotiate your departure date, be clear about the latest you can leave.

7. Know your rights.

Make sure you know your rights before you schedule a meeting with your boss.

Hopefully, you will have a boss who will let you know you will be missed and still wish you well in your new adventure. But if you're quitting a job you hate, then that might not be your experience. 

8. End the conversation on a positive note.

Make sure you cover your key points in the letter. Stay open to your inner wisdom so you can respond to your boss in the best way possible.

Once you set in motion your departure, you never know what may happen. You might be told to leave immediately. Ensure that you're treated fairly.

End your time in the best way you can so no one will have any reason to complain. Don’t say anything that might prevent your boss from giving you a good reference, if you can get it. 

9. Say goodbye.

If not, just let go and set your mind to your next job or possibly a new community. Using meditation and breathing can help you let go of any negative feelings you have about the job and the people you are leaving.

Letting your boss know that you're quitting is never easy, even in the best of times. But, it's standard practice and even essential to do this well so you can continue to move on to the next chapter in your life.

If you're doing a lot of thinking lately about how to quit a job you hate, follow these steps to navigate to the best possible solution. You don't need to stress over how to tell your boss you're quitting if you're fully prepared.

RELATED: 8 Signs You Should Quit Your Job To Find Something That Makes You Happy

Roland Legge is a certified Identity Life Coach and a minister in the United Church of Canada in Yorkton, Saskatchewan. To learn more, you can check out his website. You can also join his private Facebook group called "Discover Your Identity."

This article was originally published at REL Consultants. Reprinted with permission from the author.