A lot of the “How to quit your job” advice out there is focused on having gut-wrenching conversations and making sure you look good for your next employer:

Usually the advice is pretty bland like, “Make sure you give at least 2 weeks notice.” Or “don’t sacrifice your reputation and leave on bad terms.”

But I’d like to frame the topic a bit differently to:

How do I “have the option to” quit my job? And for the readers in the back of the room…..The key word there is OPTION.

Maybe you’re not trying to quit tomorrow. But it’s just that if you decide you want to leave…you can, knowing you have the money and options to not have to depend on a paycheck.

Here’s What We’re Covering:

Creation of the 120 Day “How to quit your job” Launch Plan

So about a year ago, a good friend of mine called me up. He said:

Ryan, I hate my job, I’m miserable, I’m going to quit. Can you help me out somehow?!”

Afterward, I told him:

Pick a web-based skill and get really good at it. When you’re really good at what you do, people don’t care where you work from.

Then I told him that if he was willing to make the effort to learn, he can do what I did too. In fact, I ended up telling him the path right there on the phone.

Thankfully, my friend took my advice…

And in just 120 days he was able to quit his job on his own terms. Now works from a coffee shop, is able to spend more time with his kids and has limitless upward mobility in his career.

So today this blog post shares the exact path to finally quitting your job.

image chart path to quitting your job

Step 1: Pick Something That Interests You (Days 1 – 3)

Look, If you want to quit your job and have the freedom from a physical location, you’re going to have to use the web.

And that’s why I like services – offering a service allows you to bootstrap and get yourself going with no money at all. Every single one of these skills adds value to small businesses so they would be more than happy to pay you.

So now let’s explore some options:

Website Skills

Web design. Everybody and their mom needs a website these days. Most businesses owners don’t have the time to mess around building websites so they’ll gladly shell out $500 – $5,000 for a well built site. I suggest learning WordPress – it’s a relatively easy platform that requires no coding knowledge to build beautiful sites. I learned WordPress in less than 6 months for less than $20 dollars!

Web Development. I say it all the time, schools should be teaching HTML – it’s a universal language. And web coding is in high demand in the US because US based developers are hard to find. Learning HTML, JavaScript or Ruby on Rails is surprisingly easy and can be done within a few months.

Advertising Skills

Web Analytics. Web analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of web data for purposes of understanding and optimizing web usage. I know, I know, it sounds boring. But honestly, it’s the most valuable web based skill you can have.

^ Web analytics covers more than just reading website traffic and sources. It helps businesses make informed (data driven) decisions about their marketing spend. In other words, you can have a direct effect on top line revenue.

Pay Per Click Ads. PPC ads are the sponsored listings that show up in search engines. The way they work are simple – websites bid on keywords related to their business and pay every time someone clicks on them. So these ads are a science in themselves and require an expert to set up, optimize and scale them. And seeing as how this is a $30B+ industry, experts are in HUGE demand.

Online Advertising. While banner ads are in decline, other advertising platforms have emerged as powerful traffic sources. Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are becoming the top advertising platforms due to their baked in audience. So mastering one of these platforms is an easy niche to land clients.

Writing Skills

Content Marketing. 68% of companies said content marketing would be their top priority if they found help. Simply being able to write good content and push it through social media, forums and other blogs is an in-demand skill right now. Seriously. If you can do it well, please contact us, WE HAVE WORK FOR YOU!

6 Profound Reasons Why Being Over 40 Will Make You Finally Start That Business

Step 2: Learn the Skill You’re Interested In (Days 3 – 60)

Any in-demand skill right now that we mentioned before doesn’t need a $100K degree to learn it.

In fact, you can learn them all for free before you quit your job.

Content marketing:

  1. Complete Guide to Content Marketing
  2. Content Marketing Institute
  3. 60+ Content Training Courses

Web design:

  1. https://learn.wordpress.com/get-started/
  2. https://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/learn-wordpress-in-a-week/
  3. https://www.wpbeginner.com/beginners-guide/how-to-learn-wordpress-for-free-in-a-week-or-less/
  4. https://mangomattermedia.com/20-reasons-why-wordpress-is-awesome/

Web development:

  1. https://www.codecademy.com/catalog/subject/all
  2. https://www.theodinproject.com/
  3. https://www.developphp.com/

Web analytics:

  1. Google’s free certification course
  2. Free Udemy courses
  3. Our blog (shameless plug, but we have kick ass analytics content!)

Pay per click ads:

  1. Google AdWords
  2. Bing Ads
  3. Yahoo Ads

Online advertising:

  1. Facebook ads
  2. Twitter ads
  3. Pinterest ads

Ok, so you’ve found the free resources, but what about the time?

My friend – with 2 young kids, a 40+ hour/week job and an all around dumb ass – was able to get Google PPC certified in just 60 days.

By just getting up every day an hour earlier and eating lunch at his desk, he was able to focus an hour of his day on learning.

So if you really want to make the change in your life and quit your job, you’ll find the time.

Step 3: Master Your New Job-Killing Skill (Days 60 – 100)

It’s not enough to just know the skill – you’ve got to be a confident, results getting bad ass. Otherwise, you’ll never be successful.

I recommend 2 ways to do this:

1. Ask questions.

Find forums, communities and social media groups online. Connect with peers, share case studies, ask questions, find out what others are doing that works and do it yourself.

I have an undergraduate degree from a top 20 school in the North East. I also have a very expensive Master’s in Business Administration degree.

Everything I do on a daily basis was learned in online forums and social media groups (be sure to check the Digital Marketing Questions Facebook Group).

2. Practice it. Over and over and over.

Do it for free.

Within your personal network, you know at least one person with a business or a website. Because you kept your job, you’re not acting out of necessity.

So you can afford to work for free in order to perfect your craft.  Tell family, friends and local businesses you’ll handle their marketing for free. If you do a good job, all you need in return is a testimonial and reference.

It works – trust me!

Step 4: Monetize Your Newly Perfected Skill (Days 100 – 120)

It’s all about your track record.

If you can demonstrate a proven history of success, there’s no limit to how much money you can make.

1. Starting off.

When you’re starting off, don’t focus money. Make it about building a track record of proven results.

Use the web’s natural resources:

  1. eLance
  2. Freelancer
  3. Fiverr
  4. Freeeup

Look, businesses use these sites to post their needs. So all you have to do is create a convincing proposal and bid on the work.

Because you’re still working at your job, you can get creative.

  1. Offer deeply discounted rates
  2. Do a free month of services (no risk trial)
  3. Provide free services until they see results

These are good ways to land some easy clients, get revenue flowing through and build a portfolio of clients that rave about your services.

2. Scaling.

So now you’re ready for the big leagues. And you can start pitching bigger clients with deeper pockets. The best way to do that is in-person networking events, such as:

  1. BNI
  2. Chamber of Commerce events
  3. Meetups

Now if you can demonstrate a proven ROI / results model, you’ll clean up at these events.

Step 5: Quit Your Job!

Congrats buddy, you earned it. But instead of going out in a blaze of fire, make sure you resign in a professional manner.

First, you need to write a resignation letter letting your manager know of your impending departure. Second, make sure to put in two weeks to give the company time to find a replacement or temporary help, and for you to train your replacement.

Submitting a professional resignation letter and giving a proper two week’s notice will allow you to leverage your former company when it comes time for references later in life.

Wrapping This Up…

***BONUS:  So we’ve included a video of Ryan’s speech – “How to Quit Your Job and Work Remotely” Because it serves as a perfect TL;DR for this article:

How to quit your job and still make money


Avatar for Ryan Stewart
Ryan Stewart

22 comments add your comment

  1. This is very Remarkable post that you made. I think i just got an idea from you post. Thank you so much

  2. Feeling so inspired after reading this. It has boosted my confidence. I am just hoping that I remain stick to the plan till the 120th day. Patience is the ultimate king. Content comes later 😀

  3. Finally took action on this I read, this article years ago ad it inspired me to start saving up, and go to coding bootcamp, just to get a different job not necessarily as a freelancer but just a career change.

  4. Hi

    I started reading web design using Word Press. I will update when I give a finishing touch to my website. This blog is excellent !!! A big thanks from me.

  5. Awesome post!!! Really gets you thinking and exploring your options. Thanks!

  6. I’d seen the YouTube video, and you managed to turn it into a great blog! The resources listed in the blog are very helpful. I like the path you have laid out!

    Thanks for the post Ryan!

  7. This is quite insightful Ryan. I was in a similar situation a few years back- I worked in a bank setting. Worst job I ever had, fortunately, I followed a good number of the steps you have outlined. Today, I have my own business!

  8. Bunkum, this is not possible in 120 days if you have a family and high pressure job. I tried last year and almost burned out. All good if you’re 20-something with few responsibilities.

  9. This has really fascinated me, but can these options really replace the pay of a full-time job? I’m interested in learning PPC or online advertising, since I’m a marketing major in college. Are these particular skills in demand on freelance websites, or will I need to directly contact clients in order to get a good income?

  10. Hello Ryan.
    This is really superb. A lot of people are there are already tired of their day job. Most of them are still doing it because they have no alternative and like you said, its unwise to just wake up one morning and quit your job without having something better to fall back on.

    One of the best ways to make money from the internet is really by offering services and like you said, the ones you’ve listed here are really in great demand and if anyone can cool down and master any of them, he will never go hungry again.

    Thanks for sharing.

  11. Love your stuff! Detailed and practical with resources to help you out, it’s great!

    It’s funny that this is the newest post because I literally wrote about something similar yesterday

    Keep rocking!


  12. Loved this post! A very good post with detailed layout on making to the path of freedom!

    Thank you

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