Adapt, leave or die.
Back in high school, my biology teacher, Mr. Schroeder, taught us that in every situation organisms have one of three choices: You can adapt, you can leave or you can die. That's it. I've carried this lesson with me throughout life, referring back to it on more than one occasion.
Most recently, I used his lesson to make a pretty big career decision. Whether to take over the family business or close the chapter on that company. I decided to leave.
Now, there are people who disagree with this decision. There are others who don't understand why I would do this. I could have fought for it and adapted my life to running an agency full-time. Catering to clients' whims. Answering calls and emails long after business hours ended. Turning around assignments on a dime. Having to explain why [insert company here] was unlikely to be featured by [insert mainstream news outlet here].
Frankly, this also seemed like the quickest path to that death option I mentioned. Working long hours for an unpredictable financial payout. Shouldering the responsibility of payroll, insurances and other overhead costs. Money is great, don't get me wrong. However, so is self-awareness. In taking this path, I know I would have worked myself to the bone. I'm Type A, I'm inbox zero. Nothing less than 100 percent. So I decided to skip the heart attack by 42 route.
That left me with one option. Leave. Follow the natural crossroads. And that's where I am. Evolving.