I've shared leaving acting on several occasions, and like the quote in The Godfather, "they pulled me back in", but leaving the business altogether isn't a move I've made yet.
That said, I've coached people who have left for health reasons, to take care of a family member of for many of the reasons above. So I know it can be done successfully.
How do you do it? You live your life day to day. And if in living your life you decide to leave, you do so, living each day to the fullest. If your life goes in a direction that fulfills you, that is all anyone can ask for. On the other hand, if you wake up one day and want back in, you sharpen your skills, get up to speed on new technology, sign up for the trades you've stopped reading, and call all the people you've been out of touch with and say...
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