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By the time she was 29, Liz was a successful banking executive on Wall Street. She made vice president in her division and earned a healthy salary. She says she had "a traditional definition of success that had a lot to do with material things," but after eight grueling years in business, Liz says she knew she was not on the road to happiness. "I felt proud, but the work was not inspiring me. I didn't have passion for that work. I felt like I had to stifle parts of myself in order to be what Wall Street wanted from me. I felt like I was playing a corporate character, like it wasn't coming from inside of me, who I really am," she says.

Liz knew that making a big change meant taking an even bigger risk. "I was about to turn 30 and I realized it was time for me to live the life I wanted for myself, not the life that other people wanted for me," she says. "It's not making me happy to sit here at this desk anymore. I cannot blame anyone else for my unhappiness. I completely believe life is short. You do not get a second chance. I was standing at an edge, and for me it was time to jump."
FROM: How Happy Are You?
Published on April 11, 2007