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This is my first post since May because the last few months have been so crazy-busy. I’ve essentially been working two jobs: First, continuing to pay the bills as a supply-chain management consultant, and second, getting a lot in place for Morf3D, the additive manufacturing business I’ve been developing with a business partner for the last two years.

So much was accomplished for Morf3D over the summer: Key agreements completed with equipment and service partners, a lease negotiated for a terrific new California location, and several major conferences attended to support business development.

Best of all, our new Chief Technical Officer found us. I’ve said from the very beginning that I wanted Morf3D to have a female CTO – and I must admit, I had doubts that we would ever find one. Then Melissa Orme sent us a letter telling us she wanted to join Morf3D. I couldn’t believe it! After years of hoping, here she is – and she is amazing.

Then, in late August, I walked away from it all.

An event occurred that caused a moment of complete clarity and absolute knowing for me – I’m out. There was actually a series of events that happened, all the previous ones of which I ignored, or reasoned away, or doubted my instincts. This one however, I chose not to ignore. I could not ignore that feeling of absolute knowing.

Have you ever had a moment like that, when you just know – no matter how it looks from the outside – that something isn’t right?

It might seem obvious to go with the option to avoid something that looks disappointing from the outside. Normally, to make things work, and do what would be expected, I can go into what a good friend of mine calls “Tetris mode” – I can spend my days constantly working to fit all the pieces together, trying to fix what I know in my heart cannot be fixed. This option can be quite seductive for me, since I’m really good at it. I know, because I have done it for decades. I know how to keep fitting pieces together. But I also know it’s a game that never ends.

That’s why, this time, I chose a different option. As soon as I knew clearly what was right for me, I chose to go with what I knew. And there was complete relief and calm in that. There was nothing to fix. I went with the option that works on the inside.

I invested a tremendous amount of personal, intellectual, and monetary capital in building Morf3D. And I got a great return for my investment: I met some of the industry’s leading executives. I learned a ton about a fascinating new industry. I met some terrific people I hope to come across again and pursue new ideas with in the future.

It just wasn’t going to work any more. So I chose happiness instead of what I knew was coming – that feeling of always having to make it work, make it right, when I knew it was wrong. That was going to leave me completely out of alignment and out of integrity with myself and with what I wanted Morf3D to represent. That, I couldn’t do.

It might seem unusual to walk away from my two years of effort. But I’m happy knowing it’s exactly the right thing to do.

I’m happy to be walking away. And I’m walking away to be happy.

 

 

GA Oct15 blog

Michelle Meyer

7 Comments

  1. Cristine Milton October 13, 2015 Reply

    Kudos to you, Michelle. I love what you referenced as “Tetris Mode,” since it is a syndrome many of us can easily get caught up in. Thanks for putting it out there so clearly and showing your courage.

    • Michelle Meyer Author
      Michelle Meyer October 20, 2015 Reply

      Thanks Cristine — yes, the “Tetris Mode” gives you that immediate, visceral feeling of how we can get caught up in various situations, doesn’t it? Thanks for your kind words as well.

  2. Lucy Kuchta October 13, 2015 Reply

    Wow interesting post Michelle! It took a lot of courage to walk away. You are an incredibly smart, talented and well rounded person who will be an asset to any organization including one that you create. Any endeavor you pursue will flourish. When I was 34, I walked away too. My wonderful (not perfect but good natured overall), high integrity company was being acquired by another company that did not have an environment operating with integrity. It was clear that I needed to leave and I did so without any sort of compensation package. I had no job lined up and didn’t know what wanted to do next. I did have a strong network and money in savings so two good safety nets that helped me transition into more meaningful career pursuits. It was one of the top 3 best career decisions I have made. The CEO of that acquiring company eventually wound up in federal prison. After holding a series of positions in small organizations and spending a year working in the UK, I have been working for a large company for 10 years. Today many large companies are in flux including my own. Change is a daily constant. However my team and our leaders are doing their best and operating with integrity as we wade through a lot of ambiguity. For me, I have learned to go with the flow better than ever. It is not the time for me to walk away as I feel confident that I still serve others daily in a positive manner. For those of you who have the courage to walk away from difficult job situations, best of luck to you. It is fun and inspirational to hear about your journeys into your next careers

    • Michelle Meyer Author
      Michelle Meyer October 20, 2015 Reply

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts and for your kind words Lucy! It does take courage to make those decisions and I know you landed somewhere where you have made an impact and enjoyed your journey. I honor the servant leader that you are.

  3. Gregg Macaluso October 16, 2015 Reply

    A note of thanks for the encouragement to seek what “might” make us happy. Michelle knows that I have had similar opportunities to continue to extend my own Tetris skills in my own travels but it takes a moment of pause and sometime great courage to do something that would make your heart better. Said before, but the courage to choose the path less traveled has made all the difference. I’m reminded today then that there is a choice for both men and women and that if we can find our authentic-self in the midst of great adversity and challenge to try to do something better, we’ll might be happier for it.

    • Michelle Meyer Author
      Michelle Meyer October 20, 2015 Reply

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts and comments Gregg. You have ended up doing what I so admire with your building a program to teach the next generation of professionals. My heart feels good knowing you are the example for them.

  4. Brandy January 22, 2016 Reply

    I love this!! I can absolutely relate, after leaving a job that I loved, but could not fix, for seven years. That gut-feeling to make a change, be happier, be healthier, and leave a continuously draining environment. Kuddos to you, and best wishes for your future!

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