Not Trusting Your Gut or Listening to Your Intuition Can Cost You a Lot More than Money
AN ORGANIC OPPORTUNITY
A couple months ago, I ran into an opportunity to do something I hadn’t really considered doing before and which I’d actually sworn I wouldn’t do, which was to do some part-time work with a local nutrition shop that sells a lot of the things I’m into, namely vitamins, herbs, and minerals, plus organic, all-natural, and gluten-free foods.
For the past few years, I’ve been supporting myself and my wife with a large amount of money I earned over an 18-month period between October of 2014 and June of 2016 (which, by the way, is a story unto itself, which I intend to tell you later), and so I couldn’t see any reason for why I should have to take a part-time job anywhere. But for some reason this past November I felt an undeniable urge to visit Indeed.com and see what, if any, positions were available locally, if for no other reason than curiosity.
Almost immediately, I saw that a local nutrition shop was looking for part-time help, and I thought to myself, You know what? I would be a great fit for this gig! Because I have quite the long and storied background in health, fitness, and nutrition, being that I, besides being the founder of this site and the author of Breaking Away: Book One of the Rabylon Series, am also the man formerly (and really still, in some circles) known as Low Carb Cory, one of the most popular and successful intermittent fasting advocates in the history of YouTube.
Despite me not really “needing” the job (because I know that God/The Universe, and not man, is the source of my supply), I decided to put in an application to see what would happen.
After a day or so with no response from my would-be employer, I decided to give them a call and let them know that they should really get me in for an interview as soon as possible, as I felt I’d be a perfect fit for the gig, due to not only my aforementioned experience with and passion for health, fitness, and nutrition, but because I also have a lot of experience in both customer service and sales, not to mention marketing, which is a field I have a degree in.
It didn’t take long for me to get a call back from the owner’s son, who was the de facto leader of the business, and a few days later I was sitting in the man’s office, where, after what was a very chummy and productive interview, I was promptly offered to start work two days later.
EASY AND EFFORTLESS AS CAN BE
Because I was hired so easily and effortlessly, I assumed that the Universe wanted me to take the job, as perhaps it had some bigger plans for me, such as learning some new skills, meeting some new people, making some new connections, or learning about the over 9,000 different products the shop had on its shelves (many of which I’d never heard of, despite my background in nutrition).
This assumption of mine was only strengthened when, after only a pair of six-hour shifts, I was offered a full-time position with the company.
Apparently, a woman who had been hired for the full-time position I was asked to take had worked for only one day and quit, with absolutely no notice, and being that I had expressed to the manager who interviewed me that I would stay with the company for as long as it felt right to do so, or as long as I was still learning and growing with it, I was a shoe-in to replace her.
I told the manager I would need to speak with my wife about the job offer, as working full-time would put additional strain on our relationship and my ability to entrepreneurial things on the side, such as write for this website, run my other site (NewEnergyNarrative.com), and do my investment-related research (which, by the way, I do every day, as I am one of the greatest advocates for renewable energy and the batteries that make it possible, and one of the most popular personalities in all of Twitter for this reason, which you can see for yourself here).
After speaking to my wife, she and I decided that there must have been a reason for why the Universe had presented this opportunity to me and that it would be unwise not to take it, especially whereas I could quit anytime I wanted, if it were to turn out that I didn’t like it. And so, with that, I informed my new manager that I would accept his offer, if he’d agree to increase my pay rate for the first twelve hours I’d worked to the higher, full-time wage he was now offering me.
Without hesitation, the manager agreed to my demand and I was then made an official full-time employee, and I was scheduled for my first eight-hour shift just two days later.
THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGH…
The first couple days went well, and I learned a lot on the fly about everything from elderberry syrup to inositol to all the different kinds of hemp-based CBD Oil products the shop sold and from how the cash registers worked to how management planned to eventually reorganize the entire store to be like its other two, much smaller stores in the area.
Unfortunately, though, I also learned a lot about what was wrong with the place, when I witnessed box after box of new product stacked in front of saleable products in aisle after aisle (which prevented customers from seeing or buying the product), overhead a co-worker tell a customer that he was, and I quote, “overworked and underpaid,” and found a whole array of products in the shop that had no price tags on them.
At first, I thought to myself, You know what? This isn’t a bad thing, that there are so many things wrong with how this place is run; it’s a good thing! Because this gives me an opportunity to make a real difference here, to propose positive changes and/improvements, to get on the “good side” of management, and eventually even ascend the ladder of leadership, and perhaps end up as the manager of the place or, if I were to play my cars just right, end up as a part-owner of it!
With that thought in mind, and with an overtly optimistic and success-oriented attitude, I proceeded to take each new eight-hour shift and the organizational issues that came with it in stride, making a point to find areas where the business could do better and then bring such things to management’s attention. I took this so far, in fact, that I eventually talked my way into an hour-and-a-half-long, one-on-one meeting over lunch with my manager, who proceeded to listen to me intently as I went over a number of new products I thought his shop could carry and a seven-page list I’d typed up on my own time of improvements he could make in the business.
THE “RIGHT PATH” BEGINS TO GO HORRIBLY WRONG
As well as that meeting went, and as much as I thought I was on the “right path” and doing what I honestly believed the Universe wanted me to do with my time at the shop, it quickly became apparent to me, in the days and weeks that followed, that my co-worker (who had been with the company for a year already) had been 100% correct when he had asserted privately that he was overworked and underpaid.
You see, I was only earning $12.00 an hour, with no “benefits”, such as health, dental, or life insurance, while simultaneously being expected to act as an assistant manager of sorts, ensuring that the store was properly closed down every night at 9 PM and putting out the proverbial fires caused on a daily basis by my co-workers who, despite, in many cases, having been with the company for five or more years, seemed to have no idea how to treat customers correctly (let alone with the requisite amount of respect).
Accordingly, I asked for a meeting with management, wherein I made it clear that I felt I should be paid far more for doing everything I was doing for the company, especially whereas I was going “above and beyond” my job description every day and both acting and being treated like a member of management. In that meeting, I proposed a wage of $16-18 an hour at least, which was taking into account the fact that I had no “benefits.”
Immediately, management (which was my primary manager and his younger brother, both of who were at least seven years my junior) admitted that they couldn’t pay me what I felt I was worth at that time, but that they would discuss the matter with their father (the owner of the business) and let me know what they could do within a couple days.
Now, being that I’m not the type of person to allow others to “beat around the bush”, drag things out unnecessarily, or “jerk” me around in any way, and because I didn’t believe these two managers (because I believe that anyone who actually wants to pay their star employees what they’re worth can find a way to do it, regardless of their current circumstances), I advised them that I expected a formal response to my request for a raise within another paycheck or, at the most, maybe two, and that if such a response were to not come within that period of time that I would have to do what was best for me and my family and seek opportunity elsewhere.
In hindsight, I now know I should have quit that place the minute one of the managers dared to tell me they couldn’t pay me what I’m worth (let alone what I was worth to them)…but I didn’t, because I wanted to give them a chance to change their mind, and I figured that a couple more days of doing eight-hour shifts wouldn’t be too big of a deal.
But then a couple days came and went, and just as my gut had told me during my recent meeting with management, there was no sign of a pay-raise coming for me, and adding insult to injury was the fact that my adult co-workers, who had, in some cases, been with the company for half a decade, began acting like children.
For example, one of my older female colleagues, who was in her mid-50’s, asked me one night if she clock out at 9 PM, when she was supposed to be splitting store-closing duties with me 50/50. Similarly, I ended up closing with another, more elderly co-worker who’d been with the company for at least five years, who hadn’t been scheduled to close but had taken a shift for another co-worker of mine who’d called in sick, and she proceeded to, as soon as she and I were alone, tell me how she really felt about me.
Apparently, this woman felt quite threatened by me, for whatever reason, because she began to accuse me of needing more supervision than all her other co-workers…of essentially being lazy and disrespectful…of not doing the work she felt I should be doing (despite her not being my supervisor and having no authority over me), etc. etc. etc. And apparently she’d been holding these negative feelings about me inside her for months, and possibly since my first day of work with her.
Now, nothing this woman said about me was true and I called her on this, to her face. I made clear to her that she was not the person who wrote my checks and that I knew very well what needed to be done to keep the shop running well and to close it properly every night, and that I liked her (which was a lie, at that point) and that she should not make me dislike her with her negative attitude towards me.
After this, the woman backed off of me, and we were able to close the store together with no more blow-ups, but going forward, I couldn’t get the thought out of my head that the events of that evening were a clear sign that I should have quit earlier, when I’d had the chance to, to my managers’ faces.
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH…OR IS IT?
A day or so later, after receiving a phone call at the store from a distraught customer who had been humiliated and mistreated by this elderly co-worker of mine (in what I’d determined was another event in a long list of customer-related abuses this lady had been engaged in, since long before I’d started working with her), I’d had enough of this lady and her belligerent, disrespectful behavior, and I decided to tell management about it.
After getting the okay to put my grievances in writing, I proceeded to spend several hours crafting an email which took management half an hour to read, which painstakingly described every negative situation I’d ever experienced that had to do with this co-worker of mine and what I felt management should do about it. Later, I would come to find out that management shared the email with their entire family at the dinner table and that one of my managers, in particular, had felt that his brother’s “blood boiled” over the situation.
Now, in hindsight, again, I should have known better than to even write that email, but at the time it had felt like “the “right thing to do,” and you know what? In hindsight it was, because it created a situation that would snowball into what would happen a week or so later, when, after I’d noticed that this co-worker of mine, who’d been the subject of my complaint, had not only not been fired or suspended, but had been rewarded, in a way, with two more weeks worth of scheduled shifts.
At that point, I was finally read to quit.
One morning, I got dressed for work as usual, but told my wife there was a very good chance that I’d be back home within half an hour, as I intended to march straight into my manager’s office and tell him I was quitting.
And you know what? I did just that. I walked straight into his office, told him we needed to talk, and proceeded to tell him that I didn’t want to work with him any longer, as I felt that he and his family had swept the entire incident with me and my co-worker under the rug, as well as the misbehavior of my other co-workers and countless other issues I’d addressed since my first day of work, and that, going forward, I didn’t feel that this avoidant behavior on the part of management would stop anytime soon or that management had the will to do what was necessary to clean up for business, by potentially suspending or even firing toxic employees.
For the third time, I felt I should have quit. But for the third time, I let management essentially talk me out of it, instead of listening to my intuition, my gut, or that “little voice inside my head” that had been telling me for weeks, “Just quit! This place isn’t good enough for you or in alignment with who you are and what you’re capable of!”
I WAS GETTING SICK OF MY JOB…LITERALLY
I walked out of my manager’s office that day with an assurance that my grievances would be addressed and that my co-workers’ bad behavior would be handled appropriately.
But then another week passed, and in what could not be any more clearer of an as-above-so-below kind of sign that I should’ve quit a long time ago, I caught one of the worst colds I’d ever caught. It was so bad, in fact, that my manager had to cover a Saturday night shift for me. And this was after I’d already had the day prior off, and with the following two days off as well.
Accordingly, I had a very long four day period to sit at home and think about what I was doing with my life, as I was recovering from my cold, and by the end of that four days, a couple things became obvious to me:
First, that no one had been suspended or fired, or even talked to, about their bad behavior, and that they were never going to me, at least not in the way they needed to be. And secondly, I still hadn’t received or been offered a raise, or even been made privy to the content of any discussions management had had about the possibility of such a thing.
Accordingly, by the time the next Tuesday afternoon came and it was time for me to work my next 1-9 shift, I walked into the shop, walked straight into the employee break room in the back, took off my work shirt with my name tag still on it and left it on a table for management to find, and walked right out the back door, locking it behind me in the process, and without so much as having ever clocked in.
After this, I hit “send” on a resignation email I’d been working on that morning from the front seat of my car and immediately headed home. About half an hour later, I got a text message from my manager, asking where I was, as my co-workers had seen me come in. I responded that I’d resigned and that he should check his email. After that, I never heard from the man again.
LEARNING TO BE A BETTER LISTENER
The moral of the story here is this: When your intuition (or gut) tells you to quit, to wall away, or to otherwise extricate yourself from a negative, bad, abusive, or disrespectful situation, such as the one I subjected myself for almost two months, you should do so without hesitation.
You see, your intuition doesn’t lie. It is your higher self telling you the truth, and if you don’t listen to it, you’re going to get hurt…or, in my case, extremely stressed-out, to the point where you are taking your work home with you, stressing out your significant other, and making yourself (and your family) physically sick.
And by the way, yes, I believe I made myself sick by not leaving that job when I knew I should have; when I stuck around long past the point where it had become obvious that I’d been squandering my potential and talent on it and they management was never going to pay me what I was worth. I believe that it was me, and my insistence on suffering my way through that negative, dead-end situation, that compromised my immune system and set me up for one of the worst bouts of sickness (which lasted for at least another week after I quit) I’ve ever dealt with.
As if I needed any more proof that this was the case, I immediately began to feel better mentally the minute I left, and my body began to recover just as quickly, and within a week I was back to my normal, happy-go-lucky, go-getter self, looking at the glass half-full and looking for new ways to put my talents to good use and reach my full potential.
In conclusion, listen to your gut…your intuition…your higher self when it’s talking to you. Don’t ever ignore it, sweep it under a rug, or pretend that your conscious mind knows better what’s god for you then it does, because, I can assure you, it doesn’t. And I can also assure you that if you don’t listen to it, and if you instead insist on doing what I did and try to “logic” your way out of (or through) a bad situation, you will fail. And when you do, you could lose not only money, but your health and even, I kind you not, your life.
Heed these words and heed them well: While my mistake in not following my gut or listening to my intuition didn’t cost me my life on this occasion, it very well could in another, and that goes for me as well as you. So the next time your gut says “Get the hell out of here; this place is no good for you!” I suggest you do what it tells you, otherwise you could be in for a hell of a lot more pain than you ever thought possible.
Thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to be here today! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed creating it!