21/02/2018 12:19 SAST | Updated 21/02/2018 12:20 SAST

5 Things To Consider Before Leaving Your Full-Time Job To Pursue Your Dream

Firstly, can you afford to?

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So you've long had a dream you wanted to pursue, and your gut says now is the time to do it? Or you've been feeling undervalued, overworked yet underpaid, and believe maybe the time to pursue that passion project is now?

"The assumption is the dream is really something you have passion about and you see yourself essentially doing for a long while. It's risky to jump into something you are halfhearted about," said the head of financial education at Old Mutual, John Manyike.

Here are a few things Manyike believes one must consider, before taking the plunge.

1. Finances

How are you going to support yourself while you get your project off the ground? Do you have enough stashed away to cover your rent, car repayment, food and project-related costs? What about day-to-day costs of food, toiletries, petrol? Secondly and equally important, do you have enough for startup expenses for your project?

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2. Back-up plan

If it takes longer than you imagined to get the project off the ground, or reap some financial benefits off it, what's your back-up plan? Do you have financial support from your family or friends to cover some of your expenses while there's a delay? Would you be willing to make some changes, such as going back home and living with your parents to save costs? Would you even consider going back to work full-time if it doesn't work out?

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3. Timing

Depending on the time of year you leave full-time employment, you could potentially be leaving behind a bonus, leave days or a possible promotion. Have you considered this, and are you happy leaving this behind – or would you rather wait?

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4. Personal life

If there's a special someone in your life whom you have long-term plans with, do they support your decision? If you had discussed plans of marriage, a baby, relocating in the near future — are they fine with possibly of putting that on hold, or financially bearing the responsibility should you continue with those plans?

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5. Emotional preparedness in case it fails

Seventy to 80 percent of small businesses in South Africa fail within the first year, research indicates. While you may very well be the 20 to 30 percent that don't, are you prepared in case the former is a reality for you? Are you prepared to deal with possible failure and still pick yourself up and move on?

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Making the decision to leave your full-time job is not a small matter. It's worth your time to consider these tips before taking the plunge to quit your job, so that you can leave with a strategy in place to help the transition to your passion project.