As we move into the autumn season, I always reflect on the past summer, and ups and downs, so I can make any necessary adjustments to make the most of the rest of this year.
These past couple months have been busy ones – brimming with video production work, new places, and faces. It’s been invigorating to be back on set and collaborating with like-minded people again.
It’s made me think back to my earlier years in film and how much I’ve grown.
The stress of being entrepreneur has taught me resilience around self worth, money, team building, and DEFINITELY public speaking.
Plus, all my years in the demanding film industry gave me years of camera and production management experience. I even had a production manager tell me early in my career, “it’s not prep unless you cry.” 😫 Jesus. I’ve been learning about resilience for a long time, I realized. 😂
So it was interesting to me when I recently learned about the term, “quiet quitting”. It refers to an employee’s course of action in a toxic workplace where you do the least amount of work that’s required of you.
It’s a way of reacting to a demanding (and unrewarding) workplace where leaders don’t listen, so the only respite is self-preservation. And it’s a workplace trend that’s sweeping the nation so much so it’s been given it’s own name at a an economics symposium.
Since then, it’s been popularized by the Millennials – a generation that values a healthy work/life balance before building a corporate career.
Going over and beyond doesn’t guarantee a raise, nor helps to pay for the rising cost of living – so why bother?
And I get it. A stressful workplace can deeply impact our mental and emotional well-being, and we’ve all, at one point, felt demeaned or unseen in the workplace.
I’ve personally experienced bosses who man-splained their way into holding their position of power (because they can’t fathom an Asian woman doing anything better than they can 🖕), to loathing going to the office and crying in the parking lot every day because I knew the toxicity I was about to face.
From upset clients, to vitriolic students, to strangers passing hurtful judgements – I’ve also seen my fair share of interactions that have made me want to quietly quit the internet.
And yet, I don’t think quiet quitting is the way.
Maybe it’s because of my upbringing as an Asian woman, where I was taught to value hard work and building my career path.
Maybe it’s because I grew up listening to the stories of hardship that my grandparents endured during the wars between China, Taiwan, and Japan that taught me the value of perseverance and toughness.
“Never give up” was a mindset ingrained within me.
Since I was able to work, I’ve been putting in my time for things I wanted. I was also raised with the belief that it’s important to put in the hard yards before I could claim a fancy title. All those years would teach me resilience and help me to understand who I truly am, and the life choices best fitted for me.
In my own journey, I’ve realized making changes means nothing done is quietly at all, but rather boldly pursuing what you hope for and value.
Here are a few reasons why quiet quitting is not effective, and how to navigate towards a better suited work environment for you.
Quiet quitting unintentionally hurts you and others.
Quiet quitting isn’t an effective way to handle these problematic situations because showing up half-heartedly will eventually be noticed by your leaders, which only puts you at a disadvantage in the future.
Negative feelings that linger too long always builds into resentment. Instead of ruminating about how shitty your boss is, try to remind yourself that this probably isn’t personal, and practice letting things go. Protect your mental space and don’t allow them to stay rent-free in your mind.
Quiet quitting also reinforces an existing culture where women are less likely than men to speak up and advocate for themselves. In fact, when women have similar ideas as men but don’t speak up during meetings, they are perceived as less competent than their male counterparts. Instead, speaking up allows your voice to be heard and you become part of the much-needed change.
Choose your battles, then speak up.
Not all situations can be solved, and not all battles are worth fighting, but if there’s a negative pattern, it’s important that management understands this; otherwise they risk losing talented people from their workplaces.
It’s not about getting in the last word or even getting getting them to understand your side, it’s about having an honest conversation with your leaders about the things that aren’t working.
If you can present your issues from an objective perspective (if you can, leverage your case on how it impacts the budget or productivity), they’ll be much more likely to work with you to improve the situation, than if someone hurt your feelings.
See if you can get on the same page or meet in the middle towards a solution that may not be 100%, but is an improvement from where you are.
Get clear on what you DO want.
Don’t let fear prevent you from pursuing what really matters!
Now that you have the intel on what drives you up the wall 🤪, take some time to journal to get clear on the roles, responsibilities, people, environment, that you DO want to work in.
What are the roles you enjoy doing most? What can you offer that other people can’t? Who are the people you need to connect with? What’s stopping you from taking a step towards it? 😉
Even negative experiences give us information to create positive change – so instead of letting the situation push you into resignation, use it an impetus to move forward.
If you really want to change things, it’s important you make new connections and put yourself in new environments. Get out of the house and even meet other people in non-business-related activities!
I shared in last month’s a blog post about how a local contact turned into a huge career shift. It’s just as important to maintain your existing relationships as it is to build new ones. Since taking krav maga classes, I’ve had an outlet to move energy, while building new skills and making new friends! I often joke about how I look forward to punching people 3 x’s a week! 😂🥋
Sometimes it’s the constant thoughts about work that create a sense of overwhelm and imbalance. To counter this, add some fun into your life and prioritize your self care, and those snotty comments will become secondary.
Get guidance to help you see what you can’t see.
I’m a believer in getting support when things feel like too much. Whether it’s a therapist, a friend, or a coach, having someone by yourself will not only make you feel better to have a safe place to vent, but can help you see things in the situation that maybe you’re not seeing.
In my own life, pushing through challenges that have taught me what I truly value, and how to create time for what’s most important, as I set myself up for more wins for the future.
It’s not just about how much money you make or hitting those big goals, but rather the immeasurable things in life that make me proud. Things like:
✅ Taking myself to krav maga class 2-3 times a week to get my blood pumping and have fun in a group environment.
✅ Taking a lead role in producing and managing video productions that challenge and excite me, that fuel my values of leadership, project management, and community.
✅ Always making time to garden and be outdoors, particularly as it involves getting lots of dirt under my fingernails. 🥰
✅ Walking through Chinatown in Vancouver, BC with my sister this summer – the first time I’d been back since 2019 and it was SO nourishing to spend time with family.
If you’ve been in business for a while, you know how to sell, but you spend your days feeling overwhelmed, pulled in a million directions, working super hard for the same (or even worse) results – sister, something’s gotta change.
Lucky for you, this is exactly the stuff I help my clients with too.
🎉 I helped one client streamline her business so she’s no longer answering customer support emails, making more money with offers that make sense, and finally on target to hit 6-figures this year.
🎉 I helped another make more revenue in 3 weeks of working together, than her past 3 months combined! 👀 We cleaned up her messy offers to focus on her best one, then amped up the messaging so it was super clear who it was for, and so much easier to sell!
🎉 Currently, in my producing work, I’m also helping to streamline operations, so they can scale to even bigger clients while cutting unnecessary wasted time.
Right now, I have 3 spots for Stategic Intensives to get you clear, organized, and taking the reins back in your business.
Over a 90 minute session, we’ll organize and recalibrate your business back towards what gives you JOY.
You’ll get clear on your goals and we’ll build you a personalized roadmap that’ll guide you towards your destination, with actionable steps and milestones to keep you on track.📍
You’ll have me by your side: a seasoned veteran in systems and learned my chops in a harsh industry with little margin for errors. I bring big-screen production smarts and will help you implement a strategy that’s unique and perfect-for-you.
You + me. One incredible deep dive. One week follow-up email access. $1500.
After you complete this short application, you’ll automatically receive the invoice and contract to get started. Upon your payment, you’ll receive a welcome email with on-boarding questionnaire and a link to book your session!
… I’m grateful to that man-splaining boss because he taught me what I value in life – to be there for my family no matter what, and to not be afraid stand up for what I value.
Those are the kinds of lessons – gained only from choosing to get up and go again – that enrich me not only in business, but life, and that I’ll take forward with me no matter where I go.
And it is that richness, gained only from experience and resilience, that I wish for you as well.