Why I Quit My Six-Figure Management Consulting Job

I have worked at a large consulting firm for the past, almost five years, now. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the consulting world, imagine this: you get a corporate credit card, you get to fly each week and accrue platinum status at hotels and airlines, and on top of all the perks, you get to work alongside executives at leading companies that impact the global economy. It sounds pretty fancy, right? What isn’t shown in the consulting lifestyle though is living in hotels, staying up until 2am every night to meet client deadlines, eating dinner alone every night in your room to meet said deadlines, and because of the stress of the job, getting sick in the process.

Don’t get me wrong, I am absolutely super appreciative and grateful to be given the opportunity to be able to experience this lifestyle and work at a firm that is really respected in my industry. But, the time came for me to re-evaluate my lifestyle and re-assess what was and is important to me for my long-term well-being.

For 2+ years, I would get up at 4 am every Monday morning and pick up my suitcase to go to the airport and board my 6:30 am flight. Straight from the airport, I’d rent my car and go to the client site for a 9:30 am meeting. The gist of my work days would essentially be summed up with this:

Consulting life = Meetings with clients + Creating decks + Running decks by 10 stakeholders + Changing decks based on client feedback…and rinse and repeat.

I’d wrap up my weeks by boarding a flight back home every Thursday evening. I’d never fully unpack my suitcase because in just a few short days, I’d have to get up at 4 am again to go back to the client.

Throughout this process, I had to juggle also managing my Ulcerative Colitis. It is an autoimmune disease that is essentially inflammation in my colon. Because of the lack of sleep I would get, irregularity in my schedule, stress from my job, I started developing complications with my disease. I not only had to worry about the inflammation in my gut but I also developed uveitis – which is inflammation in the uvea of your eye. Who knew gut health could contribute to vision issues (that could be permanent if it does not get under control!). Once I developed my eye issues about a year ago, I knew I had to re-examine my lifestyle and re-think what I need in this one life I am fortunate enough to live.

This brings me to my WHY. Perhaps learning more about my why will help you in your life journey; especially if you are looking to transition out of a full-time job that is not ideal for the lifestyle you envision for yourself.

My health was declining

Taking a look back, I should have quit a couple years ago. I didn’t because I held onto the fact that I get a company match with my 401K and that I get to work with awesome clients (I don’t really have client horror stories but I know that’s not usually the case!). Because I went past the point that my body was comfortable with, my vision suffered in the process. Luckily due to new care and a new lifestyle, I’ve been able to resolve a lot of my health woes, but it took me going to the hospital and doctor’s office multiple times for me to wake up.

Never take your health for granted. Once you lose it, it’s hard to get it back – and sometimes you can’t ever get it back. If you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed due to your job, remember – it is JUST A JOB. I ended up talking to my employer about my health and they helped make adjustments to my schedule to support my needs. Consider opening up to your HR department or manager and see if there’s a way they will work with you to modify your workload or schedule.

Even with the adjustments that my managers made for me, I knew that my health would always be a factor with whatever new client project I am put on. Due to the nature of my specialization, so many of the projects would have required me to travel, which is when many of my health problems began.

I looked at the lives of senior management

In any job I’ve had, I look at the professional lives of those that are in my field. Of course I will never know what their personal lives are like, but just looking to see where they are in a professional sense, I started asking myself:

In 5 years, is this where I want to be?

Quite often, I found my answer to be NO. Staying within my field meant I would be on the road to promotion and with promotion, comes a lot  more responsibilities. I would be in charge of sales demands, bringing in new clients, closing large amounts of business and these are not areas in which I wanted to grow.

As I developed my own health and wellness journey, I found my passions in other areas, of wanting to help inspire others live their best lives. I didn’t feel I could accomplish this by being on the consulting track.

I stopped waking up happy

There came a point where I would drive into the office and I would be in tears the whole way there. I would internally try to reframe the thoughts in my head. My “I don’t want to go into the office” would transition to “I’m so grateful for even having a job.” However, at the end of the day, I knew that I was filling my entire day with work that wasn’t meaningful to me, personally. Yes, it would provide value to my client but that started to feel like not enough. While I was providing value to others, I was not providing value to myself.

My interests were changing

As my passion for health and wellness grew, my desire to move up the corporate ladder became less and less significant to me. I discovered there was a wellness committee at work where we could inform overworked consultants on the benefits of mindfulness and movement. Being a part of the committee really helped validate that I needed to be surrounded by my passions more. Having a 30 minute meeting each week discussing these topics wasn’t enough for me, personally.

If you have a passion or side hustle that you love, try seeing if there’s a way to incorporate it into your work life. Is there a group you can form? Can you create a newsletter full of information that you’d like to help spread awareness on? Find ways to see if by trying to integrate your passions more into your 9-5, you can find fulfillment.

I was complaining about my work

Sure everyone complains but I am someone who used to rave about my work. I loved the projects I was on, found them all to be super interesting to me, and I felt I was constantly learning. However, one day I noticed I was complaining more than praising. As a positive person, I didn’t want to be that person. If I am going to spend most of my hours working, I needed to make sure it was somewhat enjoyable for me.

I Googled “How to know when the right time to leave my job is”

I knew it was the beginning of the end, then. 🙂


With many points I did emphasize in the above, that I tried to find alternatives or opened up discussions with management. However, at the end of the day, it wasn’t enough for me, personally. I really wanted to make sure that I made notes about talking to your managers, because quitting your job is a really bold, irreversible move and before doing it, just make sure you’ve explored all avenues!

I will be writing a part 2 to this on the HOW to quit and feel secure doing it. If you have any questions on this, you can email me, send me a DM on Instagram, or leave a comment below!

Why I Quit My Six Figure Consulting Job

Leave a Comment

3 Comments

  1. Gitana Serna wrote:

    Very impressed with your ability to choose life and health over what seemingly feels like comfort sometimes. You are taking a risk, or the road less traveled, and that is admirable. At the end of the day, you are incredibly smart, capable & successful at whatever you put your mind to. This will be a successful change for you and I’m so glad that you’ve chosen yourself in this complicated world!! Exciting adventures await- I’ll be following!

    Posted 6.16.18 Reply
    • Rachel wrote:

      Thank you so much Gitana! It’s definitely a bit scary – the unknown always is! – but I’m super excited to see what kind of future I can create for myself 🙂 Thank you for supporting me!

      Posted 6.19.18 Reply
  2. hiya thanks for the information

    Posted 1.16.19 Reply

Instagram

  • My parents had a pre-planned trip to Atlanta this week and since I’ve been staying with them, they insisted I shouldn’t be alone right now. Maybe they’re right. So, I’m off to Atlanta for a couple days. I know you can’t necessarily escape your problems but maybe being in a new environment will help me breathe a little more, if even for a few minutes throughout the day. 
I went to @sprouts before heading to the airport so that my family and I will have snacks for the flight and for our time there. Grabbed a bunch of fruit because it’s so easy and @hippeas_snacks since they are organic, vegan, and gluten-free. They’re on sale now @sprouts #ImAHippea #HippeasPartner
  • Tiger came into my life one month before I was diagnosed with cancer. I had to rest so much in the early days when I had her. I would get tired and have to sleep or lay down for most of the day leading up to my surgery.

On surgery day, I was terrified. I thought I wouldn’t wake up. So on the surgery room table, before I could feel the anesthesia, I told the surgery team my “final” words, ‘Tell my mom and Tiger Lily I love them’. She was always my priority. Always my family.

When I eventually woke up the first thing I asked my mom is ‘Where is Tiger Lily? How is she?’ I was even trying to get my mom to sneak her into my hospital room but security stopped her. I couldn’t wait to have her in my lap.

I eventually got discharged from the hospital and I had to spend weeks on the sofa downstairs because I couldn’t make it to the bed on the second floor. So on a narrow sofa, Tiger and I slept together, all day. I felt so bad for her since she seemed so bored and she was only sleeping next to me because her mama was recovering.

I made little promises to her though, I would make it to the patio and sit down there for a few minutes so I could throw her toy with her (she would only play fetch with me). Then eventually I was able to take slow walks with her and sit down on a park bench while she played.

She helped me focus my energy on getting better for her. No one else could take care of her, like I could. I got stronger for her. Tiger Lily gave me purpose each day. Baby Tiger helped me heal.

Maybe this is part of why the pain is unbearable. We’ve been through so much, even in our short time together. The pain today feels just as excruciating and suffocating like it did a week ago. Praying tomorrow will be better. 💔
  • The story of how my baby Tiger Lily came into my life

March 2018 my family and I lost our family Pomchi, Puffy. She had been with us for 13 years. She was my parents baby and I was the fun sister that got to come hang with her.

When we lost her I felt an emptiness and wanted some doggy energy around. I thought fostering seemed interesting. It’s temporary. I’ll foster a dog for a couple days and then that’s it.

One day I scrolled and found Dogs Without Borders. I came across a little Tiger Lily. What a funny name, I thought. There was something about her that I was drawn to. I think it was the ears.

I was still nervous about it and didn’t know if I could handle it but one day I went out to dinner with friends and we were talking about it. There just happened to be Tiger hot sauce on the table and it said TRY ME. We laughed, I had never seen that type of sauce before! It was definitely a sign.

So I fostered her and I remember I kept her blocked off in an area of my house. There’s no way I was just letting her run free where ever she wanted to go.

Then I started seeing how scared she was. She would regularly shake; so confused as to where she was. ‘I’m a good girl why is my life like this’ she probably thought.  So I became more lenient so she could feel more at ease. I guess fine she could be on the sofa once in a while when I was around but only on her pillow. I guess fine she could be on my bed but only if she stayed on her side. Boundaries only really lasted a couple days. I’m weak.

Then after just less than a week, her former foster family wanted to adopt her. I had been thinking of adopting her but then thought it was better for her to go with them. They were a couple with other animals in the house so it felt like a fun, full home for Tiger to be in.

After just two days, the couple told me they changed their mind. If I didn’t want her then they’d end up returning her back to DWB. I was livid. Once you commit to adopting a baby, there is a no refund policy. Baby adoptions are not merchandise to exchange for another fit. I missed her and didn’t want Tiger to go through another transfer so I decided to adopt her myself. (contd in comments)
  • Rest in peace my love. My little baby Tiger Lily. I don’t know what happened. It was so sudden. You were fine on Friday! Maybe a little stomach upset on Saturday and then Sunday you could barely wag your tail when you saw me. I wish I noticed more signs so I could know how sick you were. Were you telling me something sooner and I didn’t know? You left me and my heart is not broken in half. My heart is completely shattered. I am so sorry for letting you down. I was trying to save you like you saved me. I tried to be the very best mama to you. I barely left you alone. I never wanted you to feel abandoned and lonely because that’s what you grew up knowing. (Don’t worry I won’t tell anyone I would sneak you into places you weren’t supposed to be in.) I always played with you (Stay. Stay. Find it!) I always bought you the best food - nothing but organic, all natural, and premium quality for my baby! I remember I would be so tired sometimes but I’d go out to Whole Foods to buy you steak just as a treat for being you. I wanted you to know how loved and OBSESSED I was all the time. I know you were obsessed with me too. Your grandparents would always call you “piece of gum on mom’s shoe” because you were just stuck to me like glue! You always had to be touching me, no matter what. If you didn’t see me in eyesight you would panic!

When I first got you I wasn’t sure what to expect. Would you like me? Would you be a lot of work? I could not have asked for a more perfect baby. You always listened to your mama, except for when it was bed time and you insisted on taking my side of the bed. I always pretended to be annoyed but what did I tell you every night? I said ‘Little baby Tiger Lily I love you, you’re the very best girl. I’m going to see you tomorrow and I hope you dream about all the yummy treats we’re going to eat’. Sweet baby, you were so strong. You struggled all day yesterday and when the doctor said there’s not much hope I took you home so you could be comfortable. You were so brave to be strong enough to be in the car in my arms and to make it all the way home. I didn’t let you go and you took your last breath in my arms. Snuggled with all your blankies. (contd)
  • 💔EMERGENCY: Is anyone a vet or a homeopathic animal doctor? Tigers condition has worsened over night. Doctors don’t know what the cause is, they’ve thrown out words like sepsis, hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, anaphylaxis, they just don’t know.

Facts: Swollen gallbladder, low body temp, stomach is fluid filled, slight water in lungs, now in an oxygen cage... - doctor says her stomach and gastrointestinal system is not working. I don’t know what to do. Maybe another opinion or doctor would know. I have a copy of blood results to help.

Please forward to anyone who might have another opinion. My heart hurts I can’t breathe and I need to save her like she saved me. 💔🙏
  • Currently at the emergency animal hospital where I had to admit Tiger Lily for overnight observation and testing. She had been feeling ill since yesterday. Little stomach upsets usually go away quickly but today she started also having slow reactions, not blinking and experiencing heavy breathing. The vet said she is “pretty sick” with low blood pressure. She may have pancreatitis or some type of gastric complication.

Pancreatitis is what my 13 year old family dog, Puffy, passed away from back in 2018. So to hear that Tiger Lily may have this... 💔 Pray for Tiger please. Anyone that knows me even a little knows exactly how much she means to me and I just can’t have her be sick because I need her. ❤️
  • With all the supplements out there sometimes it can be hard to know what actually works. I have been taking probiotics for years and I like to switch them up every once in a while. #Ad I just started @seed’s Daily Synbiotic which I’ve found isn’t just any probiotic. What I appreciate about @seed is that they’re pioneering a “next-generation” probiotic, based on science.

@Seed combines human clinical research, technology, and innovations in biofermentation, formulation, and testing to develop a new standard for bacteria.

Their strains have been clinically studied to support gastrointestinal health, cardiovascular health, and dermatological health. These studies have been published in respected medical journals.

That sounds like a lot of information but the main takeaway is that this is a new line of probiotics that doesn’t just target gut health but overall health. 🙌 Use code DIMPLE15 for 15% off the first month of your Daily Synbiotic subscription at seed.com
  • What is your approach to food? I try to eat mostly plant-based but I allow myself the freedom to eat what my body craves that day. All foods fit over here!

Today on the blog I’m breaking down an easy approach to changing mindset around food choices. 🥑 #intuitiveeating #eatingwell #allfoodsfit #healthyliving
  • There is chaos everywhere. The turmoil can be easy to ignore sometimes because it feels so far away and quite honestly, we all just have our own individual lives to live and most of us feel like we are not directly affected by it. But we are.

This isn’t the typical content I generally write about but I think it’s important to make a difference in some way. As much of a health advocate as I am, I’m really an advocate for change; change for the better. We are all capable of so much and collectively the possibilities for positive change in our communities are limitless. But change comes when there is action behind it.

I’ve been politically active for years. I’ve traveled, canvassed, phone banked, fundraised for the candidates/issues I support. It’s tough, invigorating, gratifying, and eye-opening all in one.

Rather than speak about partisan politics (there’s enough of that out there) – I wanted to give a PSA to remember to register to vote! Your voice can make a difference when you show up for yourself and for others. I listed a state by state breakdown with voter registration deadlines up on the blog today. I encourage you to check it out. ❤️#bethechange #advocacy #registertovote #positiveimpact
  • In my reader feedback form (that’s still up in my profile!) the majority of people said they’re interested in skincare and beauty. So I listened and did a round up of my favorite nontoxic, natural cleansers up on the blog. ☺️Do you have any favorites? Some brands listed are @indie_lee @biossance @100percentpure @oseamalibu @cocokind // #naturalskincare #cleanskincare #cleanbeauty #holisticwellness
  • I’m really excited to make this my healthiest year yet! Will you join me?

We all have dreams and goals we want to achieve but it’s just going to be that much more difficult to reach them if you don’t have your health! 🙏 I wrote a blog post on how often you should be seeing your doctor as a general guideline to help you. Remember to feel empowered to ask questions, listen to your intuition and get a second opinion if you need it!

Set aside half an hour today to track down phone numbers, check your calendar, and schedule those appointments.

This year, I want us all to not just survive but to THRIVE. 💕🙌
.
#selfcare #newyearbetteryou #healthfirst #wellnessjourney
  • I hope everyone had the best January 1! Tradition in my family is to make homemade Korean potstickers/dumplings and put them in a rice cake soup, so I spent all afternoon making these with my mom ☺️ Do you have any traditions? #떡국 #떡만두국 #familytradition #happynewyear

Follow Me!

Let's Stay Connected

Expect weekly wellness reminders, exclusive giveaways for my email community, and previews to all the happenings here!