If you’ve found yourself thinking ‘I hate my job’ or ‘should I quit my job?’, suffice to say you’re in a bit of a rut at work. But how do you decide whether it’s best to stick it out or time to up and leave?
Before you agree with every sentiment below and convince yourself the universe is telling you to quit, it’s important to note that many of the signs to quit your job can be improved upon or removed altogether.
This may require you to take matters into your own hands and put your hand up to attend courses, ask for more projects, sit in on meetings or have a stern word with your boss. If you’re not prepared to do that, then you may find yourself job hopping regularly, which in some industries, isn’t a great look, or worse, staying in one that makes you miserable.
So how do you know? It comes down to you and your unique situation. We can point out all the telling signs of a deadbeat job or the questions to ask yourself to discover your answer within. But at the end of the day, it takes some good old fashioned courage to confront yourself and act upon your decision. Do you quit and never look back? Or suck it up and rise to the occasion?
SIGNS YOU MIGHT WANT TO THINK ABOUT QUITTING YOUR JOB
It’s not you, it’s them
- Your skills aren’t being tapped at all.
- Your company doesn’t invest in your development or care about your engagement.
- Despite long hours, going above and beyond, AND putting in more work than your colleagues, nothing you do is ever enough.
- You’re not growing. It’s important to remember every role should enhance your skills and add to your value as an employee.
A primary concern for employees is how they perceive their future development. Just because you’re not learning something new every day does not sanction a job change. You should, however, be in a position to improve upon your core skills as well up pick up new ones along the way.
Ask yourself: “Does this job make use of my best skills—or am I feeling frustrated that my abilities aren’t being put to good use?”, “Does my current employer value growth, learning, and new opportunities for employees—or would I have more support elsewhere?”
- Your goals and personal mission don’t align with your employer.
- You have this feeling as though you can never win/ you’re fighting a losing battle.
- You feel as though you have to watch what you say and you’re not being authentic in your job.
- Despite all of your efforts, your boss makes your life hell.
- You have serious trust issues with your boss or company.
Ask yourself: “Are there other roles, opportunities, projects, or clients I could work on at my current job that are interesting to me—or not?” “Is my work still aligned with my values, interests, and goals—or have my needs changed over the years?”
Your future’s not looking so bright
- There are layoffs happening or “restructuring” and you’re concerned you’ll go down with the ship.
- You can’t picture yourself in your job in a year.
- You wouldn’t dream of pitching your company to your friends.
- Job market data (upon doing your research) suggests that you could be getting a better salary and benefits elsewhere for essentially the exact same role.
Ask yourself: “Do I want to do this for the next five years—or does the thought of that make me panic?”
It’s an unhealthy fit
- Mondays are the worst and you seriously dread them.
- You’ve already lined up your next gig.
- You worry about money all the time.
- Stress is literally manifesting in your body: heartburn, stomach upset, nausea, muscle tension etc…
Ask yourself: “When I look at the opportunities ahead of me at my job, am I excited—or do I feel stressed, anxious, or bored?”
There’s just no spark
- You’re bored all the time.
- You feel physically, emotionally and mentally drained.
- Even the little things make you feel overwhelmed or upset.
- You can no longer LOL at work.
- In your gut, you just know you need to leave.
Ask yourself: “Am I still excited about my work—or am I holding onto this job because it’s what I’m used to, because it’s what I thought I wanted to do, or because I’m afraid to make a change?”
SIGNS YOU SHOULD JUST STICK IT OUT, GIRL
Your role could possess all the standard symptoms pointing to resignation (favouritism, micromanagement, poor communication, unprofessionalism), but the last thing you want to do is let pent-up resentment rear its head as you walk out the door. Leaving in a huff reflects poorly on you – even though you may not be the problem – and could do you a major disservice when your prospect employees follow up with your references. If you’re not getting what you need out of the role, the first thing you should do is put a meeting in your manager’s diary to voice your concerns – but try to have some suggested solutions up your sleeve, not just a barrage of complaints.
Ask yourself: “Could this be resolved by a break, a vacation, or some time out?” – If so, exhaust this avenue first so you can clear your head and approach it with much more sound judgment.
- Your boss – whether you like ’em or not – puts pressure on you to perform better, harder, think smarter and provides critique regularly.
- You’re not sure why you want to change careers or what leads you to believe you’ll be happy somewhere else.
- You’re technically capable of pursuing a career change as a side hustle.
- You have no new gig lined up and/or other finance coming in to pay your bills.
- You have a track record of your values and wants changing from day to day, month to month.
- You haven’t actually sought to, or put in the effort to, resolve what’s wrong in your current role or company.
- You haven’t spoken to HR about possible opportunities in other departments at the same company.
- You haven’t thought about what you’re really going to be giving up by leaving.
Like it or not, if your boss is placing pressure on you to perform better or address your work habits, they’re not only giving you the time of day (which is actually very valuable), but they’re also providing you with experience in taking on negative feedback or input you wouldn’t otherwise agree with, i.e. they’re broadening your mind. Your boss may be an a**hole, but it’s better than a super nice boss that does nothing to improve your skill sets or character.
Aaron Michel, CEO and founder of career solution app Path Source, previously wrote for Fast Company, “Remember that job descriptions don’t need to be rigid. Of course, you’ll still need to fulfill your responsibilities, but you don’t necessarily need to feel limited by them. It’s up to you, though, to take the initiative and expand them.”
Words: Terri Dunn
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