Remembering the times when I quit as a teacher and succeeded as a writer is something I couldn’t imagine at all.
Mecyll’s Note: This post entitled “Just Because You Quit The Job You Like, It Doesn’t Mean You Failed” was originally published in my old blog (nulled) back in 2020. I wanted to share this with you, so I am republishing this. I hope you like the message, and if you do, feel free to leave your thoughts in the comment section below.
Remembering the times when I quit as a teacher and succeeded as a writer is something I couldn’t imagine at all. I grew up thinking I could be successful once I studied hard and got good grades. But it wasn’t the case for me.
I graduated in 2013 with “almost” flying colors. I only needed 0.22 of my QPI to become a Cum Laude, an honorable mention awarded to college students next to Summa and Magna cum Laude.
When I found out about it, I couldn’t understand how I should feel. Should I be happy because I don’t have to face thousands of students looking at me as I go up the stage and receive the award?
Or should I bury myself because I failed to give my parents the award they wanted me to achieve… at the last stage of my academic life?
Table of Contents
- Why Did I Quit the Job I Like?
- Submitting Free Articles on Lifehack: My Beginnings
- My First $50 In My Digital Writing Career
- My First $250 Monthly Salary as Digital Writer
- When I Earned My First $500 Per Month
- When You’re Ready to Quit the Job You Like – Final Thoughts
Why Did I Quit the Job I Like?
Having 50 rejected job applications was enough for failure. It wasn’t as if I got hired in a small school for a $100 or less monthly salary.
I was a full-time high school teacher at the time, teaching eight subjects in four different year levels. Hence, I make 32 sets of lesson plans every night.
It was tough. Indeed, it was.
Learning there was no hope in my day job, I quit my teaching career and searched for online opportunities. That’s when I discovered I could earn a living as a writer. Yet, it won’t be an easy feat. It wasn’t.
Submitting Free Articles on Lifehack: My Beginnings
I needed to seek help from big websites and become a contributor with pay to gain experience with online writing. My parents thought I was crazy for working hard for an article without receiving a single penny in my account.
At the time, I didn’t know how PayPal worked. So, I started submitting posts with an assigned editor working with me. It was the first time I wrote about something I had never experienced.
I learned how to create stories and literature in college because I was an English major. But I never wrote something about life or lifestyle. Not with a professional editor! I love writing. However, I have yet to work with an editor beside me to edit my work.
I had to get used to having my articles edited, which could affect the message I wanted to tell.
And because of having no options, I was forced to comply with what they accepted regardless if they destroyed the content wholly. All I thought of was having my name published on their website.
After successfully publishing my first few posts, the editor, who worked with me first, told me about my writing style.
She mentioned the areas I needed to work on and that my work follows a Spanish accent. That’s because the Philippines was under Spanish rule for 333 years.
Given all the notes editors gave me for months, I practiced on my own and made a few blogs for free at WordPress.Com. That was before I got my first paid job as a writer.
My First $50 In My Digital Writing Career
I know it’s not that much. Yet, receiving my first $50 was big enough to prove to my parents there was something online.
It’s proof that I could earn money without leaving the house, enough proof to never return to my previous job and collapse in front of my students again.
I may collapse in front of my PC after working long. At least nobody could witness it, embarrassing myself. I’m not saying this is a good thing.
This is my way to keep my solitude, despite the negative consequences of my actions, even with good intentions.
Teaching was once a solace. But the constant control of the authorities contributed to my choice to quit my job. I wouldn’t have minded if they paid me low, very low.
If I had felt freer to teach the important lessons, I wouldn’t have left and continued teaching the students.
It is not the reality for most teachers, unfortunately. As much as they want to continue to teach the basics to survive and the lessons to uphold, teachers desire recognition of their efforts but micromanaging them would hold them back.
Only two teachers were working with me. For a small private school, it could be enough. At least in the eyes of the school owners.
Yet, the harmony between the administration and the teachers was in constant friction. A gap between teaching the lessons and what I call the “truth” created confusion in my profession.
I love to teach people, young and old. This is the main reason for choosing the course when I entered college.
The idea of being deprived of teaching fundamental lessons was only in my mind once I started teaching in an honest, unsupervised classroom. I wasn’t in an internship anymore but employed.
Everything was on my terms. And I have to be responsible for that. Initially, earning some money to survive and pay my monthly bills was a good thing.
The more I worked over 100 hours weekly for a small salary without benefits frustrated me a lot.
I stayed longer because of my students, as the friction between me and the school authorities became unbearable. Finally, on the first of April, I submitted the final papers to the principal’s office before I left.
And I never returned. Not only to the school I first taught but to teaching as a whole. Consequently, I searched the internet for money-making opportunities, making an income without leaving the house.
After the trauma I had experienced during my first teaching experience, I desired to be alone and socially isolated for years. At least, I have a big reason to stay home without being seated in the hot seat in front of my parents.
With many second thoughts, I rushed into seeking job opportunities as a writer for the first time. After a long search, I landed my first online job as a news writer.
They hired me, but then they weren’t satisfied with my job because of my terrible writing. In the end, they paid $50 through my PayPal account and fired me. (The website was shut down not long after I left.)
My First $250 Monthly Salary as Digital Writer
I never ceased a day to practice my writing craft and continued. I spent a few months searching for a new job until a company called me to work for them. This time, I was a news article writer. Again.
But then, there would be a team working with me and a copyeditor who’ll guide me throughout the process in exchange for $250 per month.
Yeah, I know. It’s not that much. But it’s already more than I asked someone earning $100 in my teaching career. So, I learned the technical side of writing with an extra hour spent practicing my writing, too.
In these kinds of websites, time and speed matter. They asked me to write five articles per day. In each article, I should write 350 words at least. All of them should be submitted within the deadline. Otherwise, the editor will scold us badly. I did.
For 6 months, I worked and worked and worked until I burnt out. So, I quit. Before I did, I realized I could earn more.
From $250 as my initial monthly salary for a few months, I went up to $350. From there, my mind was ticked with the idea that something was out there for me online. I knew back then that an online opportunity was waiting for me.
When I Earned My First $500 Per Month
I feel frustrated every time I change from one job to another because of this and that reason. It sucks.
From 2014 to 2016, I worked in 5 different companies (as far as I could remember) and had to adjust to different work protocols and with different coworkers.
My application could have been more attractive to most I applied for. They wouldn’t bother looking at my resume if I were to return for a full-time teaching job again.
In 2016, I quit my work altogether and became officially unemployed. I spent my years in the house, surviving with whatever my parents had on the table.
Imagine a 24-year-old achiever without a stable income living with her parents, makes me ask myself, “Will I end up like this until I become 40 years old?”
It’s frustrating. Of course, I disliked being dependent on my parents, given that I was already old enough to start my new life alone. I know.
By the time I got married in 2017, my schedule was filled with hectic schedules from processing one paper to the other because of the Embassy, etc. So, I didn’t have the time to work at all. Plus, I had my running Etsy business back then, too. It was a headache.
At the end of 2018, I got hired as a content writer for a Japanese guy running an online business (lead generation) which hooked me with a great idea. Lead Generation.
His business introduced me to the whole world of business. As a news and gossip writer, I now have my chance to learn about business. Though I never graduated from a business course.
But then, he wasn’t content with my work. So, I left and earned around $300 or so before I searched for a new job. This time, a Finnish businessman hired me for a $500 monthly salary. That’s per the agreement, excluding bonuses.
His generosity made me say yes and work for him until now. I’m still writing stuff for him and making money while I run my websites.
I didn’t have to work 9 to 5 as my previous jobs required me to as long as I accomplished my tasks. That’s it.
When You’re Ready to Quit the Job You Like – Final Thoughts
You know what, believe it or not, I was an overachiever. I had straight As from grade school until college. If not an A, I had a B as my lowest grade. Those grades were enough to impress someone in the corporate world. But it’s not.
Success in any career doesn’t rely on grades and how well you performed academically. It’s about your tenacity, determination, hard work, and patience.
Also, you must be humble enough to accept all the ridicule people will bash at you simply because they think you’re doing nothing at home. But you know yourself. You’re working hard. So hard.
I succeeded as a writer because I worked hard for it. It took me years to get out of the prison of employment and prove to my parents and everyone that being a writer isn’t that bad. Never.
It took me years to have them accept my newly found craft. I was born to be a writer, and I love to write anything I want to write about. Be it technical or not. Writing is about loving the process even though you’re a beginner and clueless about the industry.
All you need to do is to keep going and never quit. If you have a big dream that would cause a riot in your family, chase it as long as it doesn’t lead to trouble (with the police, if you know what I mean).
Even if your close family discourages you, keep dreaming. Never allow anyone to stop you because they think it’s unimaginable. That only proves the level of their beliefs. You know that you can do better. So, go for it.
How about you? Have you ever thought you’d become a writer and earn more in this industry than in your 9 to 5?