Plan Your Next
Plan Your Next
The cost of opportunity

The cost of opportunity

👋 Hello! I'm Nate Kadlac, and this is #68 of Plan Your Next. A Sunday newsletter that connects design, creativity, and how you prepare for your next thing.

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Good morning from Los Angeles!

What’s new this week?

🚶🏼‍♀️ The first week of being funemployed turned out to be exactly what I needed. A good mixture of reading, writing, meditation, working, calls, and beach time is pretty fulfilling. I’ve had no less than three job opportunities poke their head up, but I’m sticking to my plan of being independent for the next 6 mo. (if not more)

⚡️ I recently completed Khe Hy’s Supercharge Your Productivity course. It was phenomenal and focuses on how we work on our businesses instead of working in them. Personally, I want Approachable Design to be the best live creative experience that exists online, and that requires more long-term planning than simple to-do lists.

Alongside the live workshop, I’m creating exclusive playshops for new and past students to continue to build out what they’re working on. These will be hosted by me and my creative advisors. More to come!

The cost of opportunity

When I made the decision to leave my job recently, I felt an incredible conviction to do it. An emotional conviction is so strong that when asked to translate into actual words with another human, the words spilling out of my mouth resembled the illegible scribbles of my morning pages.

When you’re choosing a path not fully paved, it’s not easy to articulate every forward step. There’s an energy filled with confidence propelling me forward, but is this the best decision for me if I look at it objectively?

Am I just being drawn out into the world because of the possibility of what’s next?

I got to the point where I needed to check myself. If I stepped back, could I view this differently? How could I be honest with myself that this was the right decision I should be making?

The push and pull

I recently chatted with Khe Hy about this, and he likes to think about the underlying motives using a simple question.

Are you being pushed or pulled?

Khe left his cush job on Wall Street in his mid-thirties to become fully independent, and later he and his family ended up moving from Brooklyn, NY to California. He writes about being pulled to California:

“What makes this move so bittersweet is that we felt pulled to go somewhere else. And the pulling sensation inspires confidence – as if you’re playing from a place of strength. The push, on the other hand, feels like running away from something that is broken. Or even worse, running away as a means of escapism – without confronting the underlying fear behind the desire.”

It’s a similar feeling to when Alie and I picked up our things and moved from Minnesota to San Francisco. We weren’t feeling pushed out of the state, but rather being pulled by the west coast. The ability to camp year-round, our proximity to the ocean, near Tahoe and the mountains to snowboard, wine country just over the Golden Gate Bridge, all in an aesthetically and energy-filled city devoid of sub-zero temperatures.

Asking yourself whether you’re being pushed or pulled to move across state boundaries is a big decision, but how this plays out at a job can get more complicated.

Considering your options can be expensive

Nick deWilde has been writing about this topic of professional uncertainty, and writes in this fictional back and forth:

COACH: For starters, you can stop spending all your energy trying to change the outside world, and commit to changing the way you experience it.

CLIENT: So, are you saying that instead of striving for a job that makes me happy, I should learn to be happy with what I have?

COACH: I’m saying that the only real way to have a job that makes you happy is to learn to be happy regardless of what job you have.

When making a big decision whether or not you should stay at your job, it’s helpful to understand if you’re being pushed or pulled from the situation.

The Coach in Nick’s example isn’t trying to convince his client to stay but to listen to why he wants to leave.

If you’re sensing you’re being pushed, it’s worth stopping to explore that reason to see if you can fix your current situation first. Are you holding yourself back from making the most of your current opportunity?

Free time opens up a world of options to push you

In my first week out, I’ve had an immense amount of ideas spill across my brain. New products I could build, articles I should write, and courses I could teach.

But hidden behind this creative energy, I know I’ll never have the time to accomplish it all. Even without a job, I sense myself being pushed into areas stemming from the feeling of wanting to be productive and prolific.

Visa speaks to this dilemma in his thread:

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the things you have the time to do on any given day. You could work on a dozen projects slowly and infinitely.

Acknowledging this tension should lead you to a place where you realize you can’t accomplish everything, but by focusing on what’s pulling you should help reduce the anxiety.

Big decisions like quitting your job or moving across the country feel exhilarating because the world feels full of opportunity. But the cost of being directionless is more expensive than in looks, so make sure you’re being pulled instead of pushed.

⚡️ Inspiration for next week

🎨 Apple almost released a Curb Your Enthusiasm style ad in 2014

Larry David Looks like the full-length video has been pulled from YouTube, but I am shocked they even made an entire 10 min episode to talk about App Store

🔭 Change your perspective to change your stance.

Love this perspective of juggling. It reminds me of viewing Manhattan from a rooftop vs looking up from street level. There’s another side to the city most people don’t see looking down, filled with beautiful gardens and backyard patios.

📖 From David Perell, “Read to collect the dots, write to connect them.”

👋 See you next Sunday

If you’ve forgotten who I am, here’s a little bit about me. As always, my calendar is open to chat about your crazy ideas or if you’re creatively stuck.

Have a great week,


Twitter: @kadlac

Plan Your Next
Plan Your Next
I'm Nate Kadlac, designer of Plan Your Next. A weekly newsletter that connects design, creativity, and how you prepare for your next thing.