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 Post subject: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 3:14 am 
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current job is starting to get monotonous. At a multi-national big IT company, there is always something to learn but it is not always what i wanted to and there is always time constraint limit and what you learned is a checkered knowledge compared to academics through which you get a brain being charged at its maximum.

I am contemplating a year off and comparing cons and pros of it. Obviously and generally, it is quite similar to others who have done it:
pros - something new, refreshing, new direction
cons - career risk, loss of income.

more spefically:
pros - feels getting left behind at current job, when hearing about newer technologies. Within a year, I am thinking to finish off my minix-like kernel project, couple of networking cert-s, study about GPGPU CUDA/parallel programming, and get intro on AI and do some development practice for all mentioned above.

cons - six figure salary is hard to be separated, obviously divorcing work is equivalent to loss of substantial part of income. But if I stay on the current job for another 5-10 years and get an ax, situation will be much worse off. So thinking to take risk while it is early.

Anyone has done it?

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key takeaway after spending yrs on sw industry: big issue small because everyone jumps on it and fixes it. small issue is big since everyone ignores and it causes catastrophy later. #devilisinthedetails


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:13 am 
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I have currently been out of work for two years, but it isn't entirely voluntary. Mental health issues are like that sometimes. I am still pursuing a Social Security Disability claim at the behest of family, who have been supporting me very generously, but even if the system isn't drastically curtailed in the immediate future (where 'curtailed' most likely will mean 'completely eliminated'), the odds of my getting benefits before my brother is unable to continue supporting me, or before I recover enough to work again, are slim to none. For mental health issues that don't involve an immediate risk to oneself or others, SSD can take over three years to get, and is usually never granted at all.

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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 11:36 pm 
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oh that must be hard for you, hopefully you can get that one. I dont think I am pursuing that route as I have no qualifying condition at all. 2 years back terrible psoriasis hit me hard for 6 months (thanks god it is gone now and how fortunate I am) during which I considered disability briefly.

Once out of job, I am thinking to do a stock and options trading to maintain some source of income which I have been doing parallel to my work for about 10 years but that is far risky and non-guaranteed income compared to regular job income.

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key takeaway after spending yrs on sw industry: big issue small because everyone jumps on it and fixes it. small issue is big since everyone ignores and it causes catastrophy later. #devilisinthedetails


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 12:17 am 
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I'm also off work for a while now, and not voluntarily. I've some criminals on me, and since I refuse to support crime, the only way to fight them is not to have any income. I'm waiting for the police, but here in my country they are as fast as a pregnant snail. And as I have indisputable proofs, hopefully I'll get free from these parasites soon.
Anyway, if you have some spare money, and salary is not a constraint for you, I'd say quit immediately. If you don't feel good at your workplace, you can't do anything worse to yourself than to stay. It will definitely ruin your health which worth more than money.


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:16 am 
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ggodw000 wrote:
Anyone has done it?


Yes. Though, I didn't use the time to learn loads of new stuff. Rather I used it to relax and have fun and escape MS and Seattle's weather (quit and moved to CA). And when I got bored (about 1 year into the break) and longing for a less trivial project to work on (answering stackoverflow questions doesn't quite cut it) I started writing a compiler. A bit later I began considering interviews and job applications.

I cannot say the break was entirely a bad idea or a good idea.

I did spend quite a bit in those ~18 months living in an expensive place in the valley while making close to zero. I didn't get the kind of job offers I'd wanted. [Some people think you're bad or just unworthy of attention if you don't already have a job. Or their offers are modest. Some others suck at conducting interviews. Few seem to read your resume or make any sense of it. To be fair, I should have probably worked harder to get what I wanted.] So, yeah, vanishing savings, stupid crap to deal with, offers that didn't materialize...

But eventually I got something acceptable in a somewhat new area (modems aside, I hadn't done much of network-related stuff before, so I learned a thing or two about network drivers, TCP/IP and Python). I then changed the job to once again something somewhat different (working on a compiler backend) and upped the salary. Looks like my pet compiler project had contributed to getting the last two jobs. Oh, and, of course, there are friends and random people who helped too.

Looking back...
To be safe, have enough money for 6 months of fruitless job hunt.
If you can, move to a cheaper place, but not too far away, so you can still attend events that may help you get a new job (e.g. meetups). [Even a hike with a bunch of new people may get you an interview and an offer. Or a friend may collect a few business cards for you and one contact can work out. You never know.] Or get a roommate to share the cost.
Be prepared to change a job or two to get more money or to get into more interesting projects or both.
There's still plenty of stuff to learn on the job.

P.S. We could meet.


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:40 pm 
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lot of interesting stories, good to read all of it.

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key takeaway after spending yrs on sw industry: big issue small because everyone jumps on it and fixes it. small issue is big since everyone ignores and it causes catastrophy later. #devilisinthedetails


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:42 pm 
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alexfru wrote:
ggodw000 wrote:
Anyone has done it?


Yes. Though, I didn't use the time to learn loads of new stuff. Rather I used it to relax and have fun and escape MS and Seattle's weather (quit and moved to CA). And when I got bored (about 1 year into the break) and longing for a less trivial project to work on (answering stackoverflow questions doesn't quite cut it) I started writing a compiler. A bit later I began considering interviews and job applications.

I cannot say the break was entirely a bad idea or a good idea.

I did spend quite a bit in those ~18 months living in an expensive place in the valley while making close to zero. I didn't get the kind of job offers I'd wanted. [Some people think you're bad or just unworthy of attention if you don't already have a job. Or their offers are modest. Some others suck at conducting interviews. Few seem to read your resume or make any sense of it. To be fair, I should have probably worked harder to get what I wanted.] So, yeah, vanishing savings, stupid crap to deal with, offers that didn't materialize...

But eventually I got something acceptable in a somewhat new area (modems aside, I hadn't done much of network-related stuff before, so I learned a thing or two about network drivers, TCP/IP and Python). I then changed the job to once again something somewhat different (working on a compiler backend) and upped the salary. Looks like my pet compiler project had contributed to getting the last two jobs. Oh, and, of course, there are friends and random people who helped too.

Looking back...
To be safe, have enough money for 6 months of fruitless job hunt.
If you can, move to a cheaper place, but not too far away, so you can still attend events that may help you get a new job (e.g. meetups). [Even a hike with a bunch of new people may get you an interview and an offer. Or a friend may collect a few business cards for you and one contact can work out. You never know.] Or get a roommate to share the cost.
Be prepared to change a job or two to get more money or to get into more interesting projects or both.
There's still plenty of stuff to learn on the job.

P.S. We could meet.


i am thinking to relocate to cheaper area, bay area is unsustainable when not working. Enough saving to float for about couple of years in cheaper area. But in case if need be if job is offered, I can pretty relocate on my own.
Sure can meet, you located here?

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key takeaway after spending yrs on sw industry: big issue small because everyone jumps on it and fixes it. small issue is big since everyone ignores and it causes catastrophy later. #devilisinthedetails


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 11:32 am 
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ggodw000 wrote:
Sure can meet, you located here?

Check PMs.


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 11:37 am 
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Do not do it!. It is not good to out of work, May be I am a little crazy. It is easier for you find a job when you have a job. May be all you need to do is manage your time better. This is just my personal opinion. You need to do what is best for you.

--Thomas


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Sat Nov 18, 2017 4:55 am 
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It's been half a year by now, i'm curious how the story panned out, if it did?

Me, i've done something like that - quit not long before the company folded and decided to work on my own projects for a time. It's been a year and a half since then, i got some random freelance/contractor income here and there, worked abroad for a few months, but mostly did my own non-profit things and learned new stuff like deep learning and javascript. All in all it has been worth it.

However, an important thing to note is that i had a mid-5 figure income in a low-4 figure cost of living area, used to living relatively frugally and never had any debt, so by the time i quit i had enough money to last for a decade at no changes to the lifestyle, and indefinitely if i had to retire permanently and tighten up.

I don't think this is going to fly as well in a place like San Francisco, legendary for it's absurdly high costs, and a comparably low 6-figure income. Unless you have year+ worth of cash saved up and have clear ideas on how to continue past that under most possible futures, you shouldn't try it.


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 Post subject: Re: taking a year or 1 1/2 year off anyone did
PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:44 am 
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Artlav wrote:
It's been half a year by now, i'm curious how the story panned out, if it did?

Me, i've done something like that - quit not long before the company folded and decided to work on my own projects for a time. It's been a year and a half since then, i got some random freelance/contractor income here and there, worked abroad for a few months, but mostly did my own non-profit things and learned new stuff like deep learning and javascript. All in all it has been worth it.

However, an important thing to note is that i had a mid-5 figure income in a low-4 figure cost of living area, used to living relatively frugally and never had any debt, so by the time i quit i had enough money to last for a decade at no changes to the lifestyle, and indefinitely if i had to retire permanently and tighten up.

I don't think this is going to fly as well in a place like San Francisco, legendary for it's absurdly high costs, and a comparably low 6-figure income. Unless you have year+ worth of cash saved up and have clear ideas on how to continue past that under most possible futures, you shouldn't try it.


yes it is astronomical, my condo has gained much and plus other investments will probably net close to 300k. Biggest headache is after selling my condo, it will be even more expensive to buy something later unless there is some bubble bursting. But then holding on is also risky if bubble bursts.

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key takeaway after spending yrs on sw industry: big issue small because everyone jumps on it and fixes it. small issue is big since everyone ignores and it causes catastrophy later. #devilisinthedetails


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