A woman shares how losing her job ultimately led to more—and better—career opportunities.
– KIMBERLY WILSON
In 2018, I was miserable.
Despite working for a fairly prominent digital media brand, making over six figures, and rubbing shoulders with New York City industry elite every other night, I felt unfulfilled, and quite frankly, extremely unhappy. A new boss turned what was once the perfect gig — with rockstar coworkers, amazing perks, and director-level prominence — into a job that I dreaded going to every day. I just couldn’t shake it. (And trust me, I tried very hard.)
The thing about working a job you’re no longer happy at is that it impacts every other facet of your life. Happy hour with friends turned into hours of detailing what I had endured during that day, and phone calls with my mom became cry sessions about the depression I was suffering. It took me a while to realize it, but I was sacrificing my personal happiness for a job — one I didn’t even like.
Yet I endured it as I searched for other opportunities and tried to leverage my network to find the next big thing. As my search stretched on, I saw the writing on the wall: My boss and I bumped heads, many of my colleagues had left the company, and I suspected that my days there were numbered.
And then the day of reckoning finally came. I expected it, but what I didn’t know was that it would become one of the greatest things that ever happened to me.
For starters, only a few days later, I received a call from a friend at another publication who asked me to help produce a large-scale event in a contractor role (shoutout to God and timing). And then, like an avalanche, other offers started coming in. But it was during the fall of that year that something really transformative happened to me.
After discovering I had fibroids and struggling as a Black woman within the health-care system, I resolved to use that time to create a solution. I no longer had the obligation of clocking in at a daily nine-to-five job, and I dedicated my time to working on something that I was truly passionate about. From there, HUED was born. I birthed a startup with a mission to decrease disparities that exist for Black and Latino populations within the health-care system. In doing so, we match patients with culturally competent healthcare providers of color.
Since 2018, I’ve worked day in and day out (and still do), to build a technology startup from the ground up — with no technology background whatsoever. Was it hard as hell? Yes. Was it fulfilling and life-changing? Even more so. I work harder than I ever have in my life, but I’m doing it on my own terms, and I have that unfulfilling job to thank for that.
Since leaving that role, I’ve worked with companies that have valued me and my worth, traveled to over 20 countries, written hundreds of articles for amazing outlets and brands, gotten funding for my startup, and have gotten paid more than what I once thought was my ceiling. God has been so good to me.
I’m not going to lie: A career change is terrifying. But there’s so much opportunity out there and so many doors that have opened in the process. Getting “let go” has ultimately been one of the best things that has ever happened to me.