When love isn’t enough: knowing when to move on in life

Sometimes, in life, relationships, friendships and work, I really believe love just isn’t enough.

You can love the people in your life, you can love the house you live in, you can love your workplace and your colleagues, but if you find yourself feeling unfulfilled or are limiting your ability to achieve your goals then it is time to let go.

[Disclaimer: This post is a positive one, despite touching on some negative things. I am happy, and things are good and I am excited for what the future holds.]

In 2018 I met someone by total accident, and we had a very turbulent relationship. He was the first person I loved, but was also in the end the first person to almost revert me back to the severely bad mental health I had during uni. After 1.5 years of happiness, fun, love but also of pain, arguing, long distance and destructing habits from both sides – I calmly told him that we had met our end and that despite whatever we both felt, we ultimately could not make it work. I put a lot of blame on him initially, then on myself – but realistically, we were both at fault for our own reasons and equally both had psychological issues which we needed to address.

In that instance, I walked away from love. Because I was spending more time being sad and angry and alone than I was feeling happy. It was hard, it still is hard if I’m honest, but it was absolutely one hundred percent the correct thing to do. (And I will add that I have since met someone who everything just goes right with!)

Now, in 2020, this absolute shit show of a year, I am moving on from another form of love. A love for a place and a group of people who I have been with for 2.5 years – which isn’t long in career terms, but it is long enough to form friendships and attachments.

I am leaving my current position and am moving on to become a Campaign Executive in the wonderful city of Bristol, a place where I studied and which I love.

When love isn’t enough: my 2020 job change

Changing jobs in the midst of a pandemic, am I absolutely mental? Probably, yes.

Now it may seem a bit selfish, as there are lots of people who are searching for jobs who are genuinely left out of work. Whereas I was able to continue working throughout which I am very thankful for.

However, I did take part in a fair interview process and to be honest when I saw the role I thought “well, why not – that sounds really exciting”. Something was really calling me to the job, and I applied.

In the third episode of the Elizabeth Day podcast, Elizabeth interviewed author Dolly Alderton and the episode really spoke to me. The whole interview was brilliant and made me both really think and laugh. However, there were a few parts in particular that really struck a chord with me.

Dolly spoke of how she loved the company and being there and her colleagues but added that she wasn’t really being challenged. She said, “I lost patience, I probably wasn’t as enthusiastic as I could’ve been”.

She had gotten too comfortable, and was going about her role being decidedly average. Before her boss told her that she needed to go and do what she loved, and that she needed to be uncomfortable for a bit.

I think in a sense, I might have hit that zone although my path to get here is slightly different. I am working in a small business, a place which I love, and whilst there are sometimes huge opportunities in small companies for progression – after 2.5 years I feel like things for my role have gotten a bit stagnant and that for me personally, progression is currently limited. This is due to a combination of many factors, some of which are influenced by me and some of which are not so much.

I have learnt so much in my current role, have had an amazing time and have made friendships with an amazing group of people. However, there are certain areas in which things are lacking and where my attitudes and needs don’t match up with that of my current employer. Whilst I don’t want to be micromanaged, I think I am at an age and at a stage in my life where I need a mentor and I need to have someone who has the experience to show me how to do my job to the absolute best of my ability.

I want to grow, I want to be pushed, I want to be awesome at what I do and I want to progress. And I need an environment where progression is clearly mapped out and where I can have clearly defined aims to go further. From a more personal level, I also need to do that in order to be able to purchase a flat/house next year – which is my one any only life goal, which has stemmed from an obsessive need to have security and to have a home that is my own.

And so, after some debate I am walking away from a place and people I love in pursuit of a position that I know is a great match for me. It is more specialised, I can now afford to borrow enough for a mortgage once my deposit is sorted, I am able to save much more without stressing over every penny for fuel or a charity shop dress, there are lots of fitness perks which work for me and I really really truly believe that I am not sacrificing environment for progression. I think there is a real balance here between progression, environment and wellbeing – which is crucial for me.

I feel a sense of relief, a sense of absolute “what the fuck” (couldn’t find a better word), a sense of amazement and a sense of pride in myself for taking steps that I know in the long run will bring me bigger opportunity.

Who knows, this new chapter might be a disaster or it could lead to a newfound love. But one quote that is helping me remain calm and excited, rather than terrified, is this:

“The magic is in that uncomfortable space sometimes”.

So, cheers to a new chapter in 2020. I am hoping this will pave the way for a less shitty half of the year!

Have you ever been in a situation where love isn’t enough? Let me know in the comments.

30 thoughts on “When love isn’t enough: knowing when to move on in life

  1. Sarah says:

    Such a good post, sorry you’ve had such a crappy couple of years but you are right, sometimes moving on is best for all x

  2. themusingsofangela says:

    My relationship fell apart during lockdown although had been bad for a long time so I walked away. I’ve also changed careers so walked away from my current job. Sometimes you have to be a bit selfish and do what is best for you. X

    • Tilly Haines says:

      So sorry to hear about your relationship. But I think there are plenty of positives to be had for us both, and lots of things to look forward to in the future 🙂

      Thanks for the comment!

  3. Linz says:

    A good post, must have been difficult to put into words all your feelings. You have to do what is best for you, I hope you have found happiness because that is what everyone deserves. You are brave x

  4. Alexandra S says:

    I’m so happy for you. The fact that you’ve chosen yourself! and your mental health is so important. <3 It's crucial to feel calm, happy, and appreciated in your environment. Also, taking risks sometimes is the best thing you could do. I know that this new chapter of your life will be filled with nothing but good things!

    Sending you hugs.

    • Tilly Haines says:

      Thanks so much for your lovely comment! 🙂

      It’s actually given me quite a thrill that I’m moving into a new chapter and really have some great things upcoming! I think its so so key to remember to mix things up and do what makes you happy.

  5. D @ Follow Your Fi says:

    This post is really resonating with me. I’m in a similar situation at my job right now; I love my coworkers and the job, but I’ve reached the point where I’ve stopped being challenged. It’s starting to get a little stale. I’m going to try asking for more responsibilities, and if that doesn’t work out, maybe I’ll take some inspiration from you!
    Anyway, good for you that you made that leap. Sometimes you have to get out of your comfort zone to find something great!

    • Tilly Haines says:

      I’m glad someone can relate! I think it’s good you know what your next steps are going to be – I took a similar process and then ultimately this has been the right path for me.

      Thanks for the lovely comment 🙂

  6. Shirsha says:

    Moving on from situations that are no longer bringing you happiness – love, work, friends, whatever else – it takes a lot of courage to do that. Doing any of this in the middle of an ongoing pandemic would probably take even more courage than usual! So I think it’s amazing that you’ve taken the bold step.

    The thing is, when it is right for you, even if the decision is difficult, it frees you up! And all the very best for whatever lies ahead! 🙂

  7. Molly @ Transatlantic Notes says:

    This is such an important thing to learn from/know about — love is truly a wonderful thing when it is reciprocal and healthy. If at any point it stops being those things (or never was those things to start with and you come to realize this) then love will never be enough. It’s important to be able to move away from, and end those situations/relationships, etc, that are no longer good for our overall well-being or progress. Great post!

  8. hannahthemaddog says:

    There’s nothing selfish about switching jobs during a pandemic. If you don’t feel like you’re growing, sometimes it’s best to move on. I’ve been at my job for almost 3 years and no raise and no room for advancement. Its a nonprofit so they are always going to say they can’t afford to give people raises. For that, I have been applying to different places. It’s hard right now and I haven’t had much luck. Also, ever since my old bosses (whom I love) left and I got a new boss, things just have not been the same.

    Hannah | http://hannahonhorizon.com

  9. Em says:

    There is nothing selfish about switching jobs during a pandemic, if it’s not right, it’s not right. That said, you’ve been very brave taking the plunge and moving onto something else! I think the lesson that sometimes love isn’t quite enough is an important one, and you’ve summed it up perfectly!

    Em x
    http://www.emsworldblog.com

  10. geminihappy2703 says:

    Moving on takes bravery and strength. Well done Tilly. I have been in the same job for 18 years and it REALLY is time to move on. I am working on expanding my horizons and new skills before I feel brave enough. You are inspiring.

  11. beautyaddict32 says:

    Fantastic post Tilly. Whilst I was reading it, so much of what you were thinking and feeling resonated with me so much. I think this is how I have been feeling, not just about my job, but my life also, since my relationship ended and my Dad passed away within a few months of each other, I have just been feeling lost.

    Thank you for highlighting that sometimes we just have to walk away, be strong and start again. So much luck and love to you x

    • Tilly Haines says:

      I’m so sorry about your dad – but yes I am firm believer that sometimes we just have to have a bit of a reset/rethink and start afresh with some things!

      I really hope you find your way again soon and start to feel better.

  12. The Book View says:

    I love that last quote in your post. Growth and progress is often found in those uncomfortable moments in our life. It’s usually not easy or even wanted, but pays off in the end.

  13. Jenny in Neverland says:

    This is such a great and uplifting post. I think a lot of people stay in situations because they’re comfortable or scared or what will happen if they leave. But when really it’s not making them happy. I’ve definitely done that in the past.

  14. Roni says:

    What a powerful post. There have been so many times in my life where I have loved a person, habit, or aspect of my life but I have known deep down that it’s just not right for me and it’s time to move on – it’s one of the hardest things to accept but it’s so important x

    Roni | myelevatedexistence.com

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