Breaking Free of My Golden Handcuffs

golden handcuffs

One survey found that more than two-thirds of workers have no plans to leave their job—yet nearly 60 percent say they’re dissatisfied with it.   

I was at my job for 10 years, and over time, my company’s culture became abusive; harassment was a way of life. My boss actively tried to undermine me—even lying to prevent me from joining work trips. I was miserable, but I felt stuck. 

I worried that my skills weren’t transferable. I feared that if I left my high-paying job, the life I’d built for myself would collapse.

Then I caught my boss in a series of complicated lies that hurt not only me but the whole department. That was it: I found a new job and put in my notice. To my surprise, the top bosses offered to triple my salary and give me a VP position, a travel budget, and cash bonuses—about double the package that my new job was offering.

But despite the fabulous perks and promises, their tone was still threatening: warning me that if I left, I’d trash my career. I said no.

I realized that no amount of money was worth being in a toxic work environment.

It’s been three weeks since I quit, and I feel great. My new company has a supportive culture. I’m treated like a professional. And guess what? I didn’t have to sacrifice my salary. Looking back, I realize those golden handcuffs were junk in disguise.