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The (Almost) Pain-Free Guide to Having the “I Quit” Discussion With Your Boss

By | Adrian Granzella Larssen |

Over the course of my career, I’ve had three “hey boss, I’m quitting” talks. One involved tears of sadness, one involved tears of happiness (though I saved them for after the meeting), and one involved my boss asking if I could take him with me.

All of them, though, involved a gut-wrenching feeling that was equal parts fear and guilt (and OK, maybe a little excitement). Sound familiar? Whether you’re thrilled to be leaving a job or sad to be departing from a company you really love, having that conversation is rarely easy.

There’s plenty of advice out there on the basics of how to put in your two weeks’ notice: Break the news, express gratitude for all the opportunities you’ve received, and show that you’re committed to transitioning your responsibilities. But let’s go a bit deeper on that first step. How do you actually tell your boss you’re quitting? And how can you make that conversation as low-stress as possible?

Here are a few steps to follow:

1. Remind yourself that this happens all the time.

You’re not the first person who’s ever quit, and you won’t be the last. So if you’re scared your boss will be shocked, throw a fit, or be personally offended, take a deep breath and repeat: This is a totally normal part of the working world. Not to mention, your boss might not be as blindsided as you’d think after weeks of “emergency dentist appointments.”

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