Quiet Quitting And The Myth Of Entrepreneurship

By Taryn Watts

The post-pandemic corporate landscape is a new, and in some ways, unrecognizable place. From the Great Resignation to the booming trend of “Quiet Quitting,” employees are expressing their dissatisfaction with their jobs and, increasingly, heading to the greener pastures of entrepreneurship. Sounds reasonable, right? Wouldn’t your ideal boss, in fact, be you?

The truth is, entrepreneurship is hard. It’s scary. It’s often all-consuming, and it’s not for everyone, which is why there’s such a high failure rate associated with entrepreneurship. It can be wildly fulfilling, creative, and meaningful, especially if it is passion-driven.  But it also comes with its challenges, and the boundaries between work and life often become blurred, especially if you are financially required to provide.

For most of us, entrepreneurship is not a viable solution for employment dissatisfaction. Far easier and more effective is introducing elements of coaching culture to corporate culture.

Three Steps to Building a Coaching Culture in the Workplace

1. Self-inquiry

Okay, you’re not happy with your job. But what is it that you don’t like about it? And what parts of it are actually pretty good? Ask yourself: “What are my core values?” Maybe you value family, so you want a job that allows for work-life balance. Maybe you value creative expression and wish for a job that was more artistic. Whatever it is, the first step to getting what you want is figuring out what you want.

2. Self-esteem

How much of your sense of your own value do you derive from your work? How much of your pleasure in life do you expect your work to provide? Part of having work-life boundaries is the limits you place on its importance in your life. One of the interesting things about the Quiet Quitting phenomenon is that it’s considered revolutionary to do only what is explicitly required. But why should it be? 

If you’re a habitual people-pleaser, you might be overvaluing your reputation as a team player, or someone who exceeds expectations. Clocking out at 5 pm, both physically and mentally, is not quitting, and it’s not revolutionary. It’s a way of giving your life as much space and importance as your job, and it gives you the chance to pursue your core values (from step one) on your own time. When your life is nourishing you in this way, you’ll find you can expect and need less from your job, and it shrinks to a reasonable size in proportion. 

3. Self-expression

After completing the internal work of steps one and two—learning what you like, what you want, and how you can take responsibility for how you feel about yourself and your job—it’s time to go external.  

By now, you should have concrete goals in mind. Let’s consider the example of wanting more creative fulfillment in your job.  Coaching teaches us to have hard conversations by being able to articulate our “why.” In that spirit, schedule a meeting with your manager or your HR department and explain what it is that you’re looking for. Maybe there are tweaks that could be made to your job responsibilities that would allow you to use your artistic or imaginative talents. Feeling undervalued? Need mental health support? Once you’ve figured that out, you can ask for what you need. Unexpressed expectations are destined to remain unmet. 

As well as sharing what your desires and needs for the job are, this could also be a great chance to get clear about what they are expecting from you. If you decided better work-life balance would serve your values, communicate clear boundaries to those involved.  Then, be prepared to enforce those boundaries. Stop working at the end of the day, don’t check email after hours.  

So let’s ditch the false dichotomy that you’re either shackled to a thankless, soulless 9-5 or fuelled by the fire and freedom of entrepreneurship.  We have so much more authority and agency than we realize, if only we do the work of empowering ourselves. 

Taryn Watts, a Master Certified Coach and Founder of the Mind Rebel™ Academy, trains and supports world-class coaches around the globe, helping them to step into their life’s work. She is the creator of the revolutionary Mind Rebel™ Method, a simple yet powerful self-discovery framework that is transforming the way people coach, lead, and connect internationally. With Taryn, coaching isn’t about giving advice; it’s about helping others find their deepest truth within themselves. To learn more about how coach training makes better employees and better leaders, visit The Mind Rebel™ Academy.

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