I quit my job as a teacher after 6 years to work in tech sales. I make $20,000 more, have greater flexibility in my day, and am so much happier now.

 I became a teacher because I have a passion for helping people and sharing knowledge. This was exemplified by the career tests I took in college which all pointed toward teaching. Teaching felt natural to me, and it was something I wanted to do since my mother was also a teacher, who I admired. My teaching experience was at a high-poverty school where I had to reframe my teaching style to ensure that the basic needs of my students were met before they could learn. It wasn't easy as some students came from difficult home backgrounds, so we had to create a structured environment to help them learn. Our school continually added more responsibilities without taking any of them away, which was draining. I found myself experiencing burnout, stress, and anxiety, which eventually took a toll on me. Even before the pandemic, I was already stretching myself too thin, with my daily routine being unhealthy. The pandemic brought a new challenge as we had to teach both online and in-person simultaneously, which was overwhelming. Teaching kindergarten students online was a monumental task as they learn through tactile experience, and it was frustrating not being able to provide that. My schedule was jam-packed, and even lunchtime was cut short, leaving me with no time to recuperate. I never thought I'd leave the teaching profession, but over time, I realized that I had to leave and look for a corporate job.

I began working as an account executive in 2020, which felt different but had similarities to teaching. In interviews, I would compare teaching to selling learning to students, as we constantly monitor progress and need to gain their buy-in. However, being surrounded by students day in and day out for years had become overwhelming for me. The opportunity to work in a quiet environment with a more flexible schedule, including working from home, was a drastic change. As a result, I was promoted to sales coach and now make $20,000 more than I did teaching. I believe teaching is unsustainable and, from my experience, teachers should have smaller class sizes and more in-school support for mental health. Although leaving a career you have worked hard for may seem difficult, it doesn't make you a failure.

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