We’ve all been there. That wave of emotion that washes over us when we wake up – “I don’t want to go to work today”. This is normal and probably happens to most people on most days. However, where do we draw the line between just generally not having the get-up-and-go and genuinely dreading the day ahead; wishing you were anywhere else? That’s where today’s post comes in. From personal experience (and from a friendly recommendation to cover this topic), I wanted to compile my personal experience into one place to help you work out if it’s time to move on.
We as humans are constantly changing and growing. Therefore, our surrounding environment needs to adapt with us to create a balanced lifestyle. From the ages of 16-18 whilst I was still in education, I had a handful of part-time jobs, that I had no personal interest in remaining in once I had left school. I had outgrown the drama of the stockroom gossip and wanted to further myself. I wanted more hours, better pay and a healthier working environment. So I proactively took myself elsewhere when the opportunity presented itself. Are you having second thoughts about the position you’re in? Do you find yourself looking on Indeed “just out of curiosity”? If so, I hope this post helps you make a step in the right direction. If you’re also on the hunt for employment tips, I have a 10-tip job guide here. But please remember, I’m not a professional! I just want to share my experience thus far. Leaving a job should take careful consideration depending on the situation. Make sure you consider all routes before reaching your final decision.
Firstly, it’s important to come to the definite conclusion that it’s time to spread your wings and leave the nest of your current job. Coming to this decision will allow you to stop fighting a battle with yourself of ‘Do I, Don’t I”. Once you’ve made your decision and in your gut you know it’s right, stick to your decision like glue and start the job hunt journey. In order to do this, I think a simple pros and cons list can be really beneficial in allowing you to see a physical list of what the best choice may be. Left side; why you should stay, right side; why you should go. Watch one of the sides build up much quicker than the other. We can overcomplicate things for ourselves sometimes, when as hard as it may be, sometimes we just need to remove the emotion out of the equation and do what’s best for us.
But what are the signs?
- You’re unhappy. This may sound obvious, but it’s easy for us to invalidate our own feelings and tell ourselves that everyone must feel that way and that we just have to get on with it. But when you’re physically upset or even ill from how your job makes you feel, that’s a red flag in itself. If you find yourself feeling down about work even in your own spare time, then your job is not offering you what it should be.
- Bad logistics and practicality. Is the commute to and from work too much to bare most days? Are you adding hours onto your already laborious day just by getting to and from? It’s common knowledge that not all jobs are around the corner, but if the travel is too much and/or too expensive, it looks like it’s time to move closer to home.
- Unsustainable salary. Does your job allow for a comfortable lifestyle, where you don’t have to worry too much about paying the bills or putting food on the table? If you feel you are not being paid enough for the work that you do, this can lead to more dissatisfaction. We work for experience, but also work for money. We like to see tangible results from our hard work, but if all our money just goes on the commute to work and we have no money for socialising for example, it’s going to be a hard rut to experience.
- Hours of work. Unless you are in a job with set hours i.e. an office, it can be difficult to find working hours that fit you just right. It’s inevitable for work to impact our social lives on the odd occasion, but if it’s every day and you find yourself planning your life around work, it’s again another red flag. Nobody wants to be overworked, but being underworked can be just as difficult. If you are not given hours that allow you to live, somewhere else could offer you much more (or less, depending on what you need).
- Lack of growth and development. Finding yourself fully trained and stagnant in the same position, can be quite frustrating. We should really be learning every day in our jobs and working to progress up the ladder. But if you’re sat doing the same tasks day in, day out, despite enquiring about progression routes, then the workplace doesn’t have your best interests at heart. If you’re a good resource to the business, it would be a shame to have your skills and knowledge wasted and not utilised.
- Timing. Sometimes jobs aren’t right for us at a certain time in our lives. A job could have ticked every box and been a perfect match back in May 2017, but be hindering your progression and plans in the current day. Like aforementioned, we are continuously changing, and having a job that can grow and change with us will aid the process and not hinder it. If you don’t see a future within a certain company or field, why stay in it?
- Lack of motivation/feeling bored. There are few things worse than having a clock-watching type of job. If you find yourself staring at the time bored out of your brains, then your brain is not stimulated and is in need of a refresher. There will be a dull day in any job, but the overriding consensus should be that we can cope enough to go in, get the work done whilst feeling suitably satisfied, before going home. The actual working environment may impact our motivation levels, which leads onto my next point…
- Toxic or unpleasant work environment. If you’re dreading work because of your colleagues, bosses etc, then there’s a bigger issue at hand. Who we work with and the environment that we work with them in, contribute massively to our overall satisfaction. Sometimes the issue at hand can be dealt with, i.e. if you’re having problems with a colleague being rude or bossy, there should be a line of action that can put a stop to this. However, if the problem surpasses a fixable issue, it is worth looking elsewhere for your own sake. No one should have to deal with toxic personnel in the workplace, especially when we spend most of our time there.
There are more than just 8 factors that can contribute to your desire to leave your job. I attempted to compile a list that is hopefully applicable to several calibres of people. Whether you’re a student working in a cafe, or a busy mum or dad juggling ongoing expenses as well as tricky twins. I appreciate it is never an easy decision, especially when you have to consider finances and dependents. However, your happiness is vital as it impacts more than you may realise.
If you’re seriously considering changing jobs, then you have answered your own question. Be selfish, but be proactive. Incorporate the (potentially negative) energy you are harvesting, and inject this into your fire for finding a new position. It’s nice to feel excited about potential job prospects, we shouldn’t hold ourselves back. By putting a plan of action together primarily consisting of: when you can feasibly leave (ideally have another job before leaving) and where to, you will be well on your way to closing the door on a chapter that was no longer offering you any progression.
Thank you so much for reading, I wish you the absolute best in your endeavours!
Until next time,