How to Break Up

How to end a relationship: how to break up with your employer, your job, or your *sniff* snuggle bunny.

Stever Robbins
5-minute read
Episode #82

If you decide to give reasons, use I-statements. Talk about your decision, your needs, and your reactions. “I need to live alone for a while to find myself.” “I just don’t feel right with this relationship.” “I need someone who’s 6 feet tall, in great shape, with chiseled abs, who attended Clown College.”

Don’t discuss them or how they act. “You don’t pay enough attention to me,” or “You put the toilet paper facing the wrong way on the roll.” At best, they’ll get defensive and angry. At worst, they’ll argue, convince you to stay, and trap you in a loveless morass of needy co-dependence, all while hanging the toilet paper that inefficient way that you just know wastes paper.

Every reason you give becomes a negotiating point. If you want to avoid all that, you’re always free to say, “I’ve loved the time we spent together and now have to leave the relationship.” If they ask why, you can just reply, “I just feel like I have to.” You don’t need to give reasons.

No Nookie with Your Ex for a Year

Everything I’ve said is the same for quitting a job as it is for breaking up a romance. Don't threaten, get clear on your motives, don't drag it out, don't negotiate if you have no intention of staying, and use I-statements to explain your reasons. There’s one important difference, however. With a romance, you really lay down the no nookie rule with your ex for at least a year. You know it happens. With a job, however, exactly the opposite applies. Expect them to want you back, and be prepared to spend the night, just charge double your salary in consulting fees. Corporate nookie comes with a price tag.

This is Stever Robbins. Follow GetItDoneGuy on Twitter and email questions to getitdone@quickanddirtytips.com.

Work Less, Do More, and have a Great Life!


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About the Author

Stever Robbins

Stever Robbins is a graduate of W. Edward Deming’s Total Quality Management training program and a Certified Master Trainer Elite of NLP. He holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BS in Computer Sciences from MIT.