Re: Resignation

That's it. I've decided to leave Haaretz. We'll start with the paper, and with luck we'll then send out feelers about leaving the country.

That's it. I've decided to leave Haaretz. We'll start with the paper, and with luck we'll then send out feelers about leaving the country. I like to resign, to leave things, to cut and run. That's my favorite hobby. Sometimes I take on tasks just for the thrill of abandoning them. Resigning is a gift from God. I know there are people who get their kicks from sex, for others it's money, and some get a buzz from sky-diving. But I love quitting. I know not all of you can allow yourselves to do this. You have to be psychologically strong to take a risky step like resigning. But I recommend to all my friends that they quit just once. From that moment on, you won't be able to stop. It's addictive.

Over the past two years I've been in therapy, the main objective of which was to deal with my quitting problem. I was in group therapy with Quitters Anonymous. Two of the eight members committed suicide in the first six months. Three others, who since the last time they quit couldn't find another job they could resign from, are in a mental-health facility. By the way, the district psychiatrist quit, too.

I'm not talking here about people who resign for some convincing reason, perish the thought. You shouldn't quit, let's say, if you've been told there have been cutbacks. Don't resign if your boss sexually harasses you, even if your employer asks you to do things that clash with your moral standards. Don't dare resign for those reasons or you'll miss all the pleasure.

Quit when no one imagines you are about to do it. Leave right when you're up for a raise or a car allowance. It should look natural, another ho-hum day on the job. You come in as usual. You've been planning this for months, but only you know that. Take your time writing your resignation letter. Take six months, a year, as long as you need. Just make sure that during the time it takes you to write it, they don't fire you. Four of my friends cut their wrists because just when they were drafting their resignation letters, they were told that their high-tech company had gone belly-up. A real addict with years of experience, like me for example, starts thinking and formulating the letter from the moment he signs his contract. Two resignation letters which I wrote - one to the Kol Ha'ir weekly and the other to Ha'ir - became best-sellers that have been translated into several languages.

Don't resign if you have something else in the pipeline. That spoils the fun. Quit only when you have no other job and no way of supporting yourself, or preferably, of course, your family. The bigger the family, the greater your satisfaction. If you've left a workplace because you got a better offer, then you're just nuts and you could easily be a journalist leaving Haaretz, let's say, for Yedioth Ahronoth. And you don't really want to be nuts - or a journalist, for that matter.

Experts say that proper timing of a resignation brings maximum satisfaction. Try to coordinate your quitting with other events, such as a lien on your bank account, apartment or car, or your spouse unexpectedly being fired.

Another sure-fire way to heighten your impact is to catch your employer off-guard. A friend of mine used to send a bouquet to his bosses, and instead of a congratulatory card for a birthday or a promotion, he attached a flowery letter of resignation. If you have the means, rent a plane that will trail a sign saying "To CEO ... Re: Termination of employment ..." If you're close to the boss, invite him or her to the beach at that moment.

If you have a column in the newspaper, it's a snap. Instead of your editor getting another stupid column as usual, along comes a letter of resignation that will probably raise a smile. Always remember, even if you have never been fired and have even reached retirement age and were considered the best worker in the company, the boss will always, but always, have been waiting for the chance to fire you. Keep one step ahead. And finally, it's very important to remember: Don't ever believe anyone who says to you, "Wow, it's really too bad you're leaving."