15 People Share What *Really* Happened When They Left Their Job To Chase Their Dreams

It might be the best thing you ever do.

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Every single one of us has, at one point or another, been forced to endure going to a job that we utterly hate. It’s kind of expected, right? But the bravest thing you can do is chase your dreams, all by quitting your job.

Sure, leaving a job you despise is an immediate relief, but it’s also pretty darn scary! Think about it: you’re leaving the security not just of something you know well, a daily routine that you’ve become accustomed to, you’re also leaving the security of a weekly paycheck — something we can all appreciate, no matter how crappy our jobs may be.


But what if you don’t succeed? What if you’re forced to go back to your old job and beg for them to take you back? The only thing scarier than leaving a job you totally despise is trying to succeed in pursuing your dreams knowing full well that failure is always a very real option.

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If you are stuck in a dead-end job and fear is holding you back, it’s going to be okay. It’s better to try to pursue them and fail than to waste your life in drudgery. If my assurances aren’t enough, you need to check out these stories about what men think, all shared by real people on Reddit.

What happened when these men finally left the job they hated and wound up pursuing their dreams full-time? Some are funny, some are just amazing, and all will encourage you to chase what you really want out of life.

15 People share what *really* happened when they left their job to chase their dreams: 

1. All dreams are possible

"I quit my job at Taco Bell to follow my dream of not working at Taco Bell. Sure enough, dreams do come true!"

2. It can be a whirlwind of disappointment, but things always turn out okay

"Quit my job back in March 2016 to start my software development company. It was trashy for 8 months but then I landed a client who paid USD 16k for some [crappy] software. All the paperwork was done, and now they wanted some portion of the money from me as a bribe for giving me the project. My partner agreed to it, whereas I was hard-pressed on not. My partner took everything out of the company bank account into his account. I didn't deliver the software due to that, he kept calling me to deliver and I said to go away.


Now I am waiting for them to go against me in court for not delivering the software so that I can prove to the courtroom with all the proof of audio and paper and see them suffer for the rest of their lives. Fast forward to January 2018; I restarted my software development company, have offered free service for the entire month of January. Completed 7 projects in that month to have a portfolio. Now I have one client from those 7 projects. He pays me well, he's honest, doesn't do bad work. I am feeding my stomach and looking forward to new clients."

3. Never look back on the past

"I left my 9-5 career when I was 27 and traveled with my girlfriend to wine regions and worked harvests for two years until I could land a job at a winery in the states. Now I'm a winemaker with my own brand and have a money-making job working as the assistant winemaker for a larger winery. I've never looked back and I love my life."

4. It's better to have to struggle than stay at a job you hate

"I quit my soul-sucking call center job to go do Game Development. It helped that I had been doing it as a hobby for years and a bit of contract work. I just woke up one day and thought, '[screw] this soul-sucking job.' Never went back. Been in Game Dev for 8 years and am a Lead Developer now."

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5. You'll land on your feet

"Was trying to move cross country for years to get back into the band that moved away. Got yelled at by my boss for missing the mark on some BS project. Put in my 2 weeks the next day, had enough of his passive-aggressiveness. I took about a month to collect myself and do some chilling and planning. I sold or donated a lot of my stuff, packed my car, and left. Left behind my family, but they supported me... I landed a new sweet gig at a snazzy engineering firm and the band plays 2+ shows a month, and we're writing a new album so I'm stoked. Took a leap of faith and landed on my feet."

6. It will all work out

"Got stuck in some horrible office job full of the usual politics and shallowness. Seeing what the managers were like gave me a sign of what would happen to me if I stayed. An option for voluntary redundancy came up, so I took it; at the time I had no commitments and nothing to lose so thought I'd give it a go. Worked out great! I took a few years to get there but I'm now an illustrator who's always busy."

7. Sometimes, things turn out better than your dreams

"Well, I didn't make it in the dream job situation; in fact, I went broke and was waiting tables at age 35. So I went back to school all over and found a career that I like, but not love. However, I am no longer a desk jockey and if I want to do some cool stuff in my new career it's a total possibility, just depends on my own effort."

8. You could end up in the movies

"I quit a 9-5 office job to get into movies/visual effects. It's worked out great for me — good wages, top in my field, and there's a certain thrill knowing that probably 95 percent+ of the English speakers in the world who have a TV or go to movies have seen some of my work."


9. You'll be healthier than ever

"My health has been amazing. I used to be sick 80 percent of the time since I have an autoimmune disease (Sjögren's disease), so being in an office full of people who don't take care of their health and in a third-world country means I keep getting sick. And it takes me over a month to recover."

10. You discover passions you didn't know you had

"Within a month, I found out my girlfriend was cheating, my college tuition was raised 15 percent, and my boss told me 'even if your family died in a car accident we’d still expect you to be on time, so since you were late once this year we can’t give you your cost of living raise.' I sent out 300 CVs to wineries and got one job.

Rode my motorcycle cross country to do the harvest. Learned the trade, learned French, and made friends worldwide. Have since worked under great winemakers in California, New Zealand, Australia, and France. Taken about 8 months of vacation in several countries over the past few years and have 7 barrels of my own Sangiovese ready to bottle soon."

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11. Your past can help your future

"I was working at a car dealership, hating life, and decided to use my Veteran benefits to go to school. Two years later, I finally got my Bachelor's in Computer Information Systems and am now training to be a Cyber Security analyst. So far, so good."

12. Retirement is a dream, too

"Quit from my own company. I designed and developed software for fortune 500 companies. Got so sick of it. Fortunately, I made bank so I retired. Loving that. Retirement was my dream since high school."

13. There's always hope for the future

"I quit my job and am following my dreams of hitchhiking around Europe. Going really well so far. But I'm only 22 so I have no idea how the rest of my life will be. I'm happy to be living my dream for now though."


14. Things sometimes turn out picture-perfect

"Quit my carer's job back in 2010, left my home country with only a few grand in my back pocket, rented a room, and got a job as a manager in one of Europe's biggest companies (still there with a few more promotions). Met an amazing girl with who I now live in our own home and have 2 amazing kids and a doggie. So it all worked out perfectly in my case."

15. There's always room for learning more

"Six years ago I went from full-time grocery store pizza maker to part-time to follow my dream of being a self-employed glass artist. I still have struggles sometimes and the way I make money with glass is always changing and adapting, but I've been doing well.

I'd like to quit the part-time pizza job someday, but it is nice to have a backup plan in case things completely fall apart. I definitely think it was one of the best life decisions I made. I've grown a lot as a person, met amazing people in the glass community, and I'm always getting better and learning new skills."

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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a freelance writer and the former Senior Editor of Pop Culture at Newsweek with a passion for lifestyle, geek news, and true crime.