“I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” Steve Jobs
Well this is it in a nutshell isn’t it? I mean it sounds sooo simple. In reality, for most people who have been in a career for more than two years, even if the answer has been a “No” for months, the response is one of three things:
- exert a tremendous amount of mental energy to force yourself into believing that things really aren’t as bad as they seem
- spend time complaining to anyone who will listen (but take no action)
- try to improve the situation (working longer hours, more communication/less communication, etc.).
You’ll notice that leaving the job is not on the list.
Why is that? Why would we stay in a job where, on a daily basis, we face doing something that we don’t care about or want to do?
We do it because we live in a fear based society which tricks us into believing that money and status are more important than anything else. This fearful culture erodes our self-esteem by telling us we aren’t good enough and therefore we fear that we will never be able to find a different job, a better job, or more meaningful work. We are continually fed the idea that in order to make a change we need to hustle, take on a side job, work nights as well as days, push harder – when really, by the time we are considering leaving a job, chances are that we are already so stressed, so exhausted, so burnt out that the idea of spending even a few hours on updating our resume seems out of the question.
If you are in this situation, you probably feel stuck. Focus on that feeling for a minute. What pain is it creating in your body and in your mind? Stop and acknowledge the burden you are carrying. Stop and acknowledge the strength you show everyday in getting up and facing your life as it is. If you can get up everyday and face this, you have enough strength to take action to make your life better. You need to stop undervaluing yourself. You can be happier.
Clear Signs That You Need to Leave Your Current Job
- It’s hard to go to work
- You get the Sunday Blues most Sundays and it usually starts before noon
- You are miserable every morning
- You really dislike the people you work with
- You don’t believe that the company is a good place to work or you don’t fit in there
- You aren’t learning or being challenged
- Your ideas aren’t being heard
- Your skills are not being used
- You’re bored all the time
- You lack passion
- You’re work performance is suffering
- The problems are impacting you outside of work
- You’re continually stressed, negative, and or unhappy at work
- Your work related stress is affecting your physical health
- You no longer have a balance between work time and non-work time
- You are experiencing any kind of verbal or physical abuse or sexual harassment OR you are aware that this is happening within the organization
- You can’t picture yourself in the company next year
If you find many of these things are true for you and/or you find that the ones that are important to you have been true for too long – it’s time to leave.
I know this is scary; but ask yourself: What is scarier? Leaving or being in the same position a month from now, six months from now, a year from now?
If the answer is being in the same position, you need two main things: a plan (to leave the job you have and to get a job you want), and a support system. You can’t do this alone and you don’t need to hide. The change you are making is about integrity and courage. Find people (friends, family, people who have done this before, experts, a career coach, a counselor), who can hear your fears and help you face them, help you to create an awesome plan and follow it, provide you with good advice, and have your back all the way through the process.
Coming to the realization that you need to leave your current position is not easy, and actually leaving and starting something or someplace new is harder still. But these things are not harder than living in an unhappy, fear based mindset and doing work that is without meaning. Making this change is so much more than a list of things to consider or even actions to take. It’s heart centred, fear facing, truth speaking, joy bringing, courageous work. This journey will unquestionably test you, but through this, you will build the self-esteem you have lost and find the freedom that comes from listening to your soul AND taking action. If you are pursuing what is truly meaningful for you, there is no question that your definition of success will change and that you will find this success beyond your wildest imagination.
If you relate to this or are on this journey let me know how it’s going?
Let me know if you have other reasons to leave?
Let me know what holds you back?