Let’s face it, not many of us enjoy going to work day in and day out. It’s something we do out of necessity, because if we didn’t, we wouldn’t be able to pay our bills, eat good food and afford the occasional vacation to a place that’s nicer than the one we live in.
There is, however, a difference between not enjoying your job and being completely and utterly miserable with your job. Quitting your job in the middle of a recession probably sounds like terrible advice, and for most people, the alternative (unemployment) is worse than a horrible boss, boring colleagues or monotonous routine.
So how do you know when to bite the bullet and keep showing up for work and when to throw in the towel and move on to something else? This is a tough question to answer, because everyone is different and each situation will require a different solution.
But, there are a few very good reasons to quit your job, especially if these things are making you unhappy in every other area of your life.
1. The thought of going to work in the morning makes you physically ill
If you are in a situation where just the thought of turning up to work makes you depressed, stressed and generally miserable, then it’s probably not worth it. We all have days where we’d rather stay in bed because work is too stressful or we don’t particularly like our boss or coworkers, but if your job is making you chronically unhappy then why are you still there?
Sure, you have to pay the rent, but why waste your life feeling miserable 24/7?
2. You can’t see a future in it
Everyone needs to feel challenged in their work, and if you have something to work towards you’ll be able to find a reason to get up in the morning. If there’s room for you to grow, you’ll be alright. But if the view ten years from now looks the same as it does today, you’re probably wasting your time.
Maybe you chose the wrong career or didn’t land your dream job, but why settle for something that will get you nowhere? Find a new dream; take on a new challenge or at least get a job that doesn’t make you want to kill yourself out of boredom.
3. You feel you are undercompensated
If you have worked in the same position for years, without so much as a pay raise or promotion, it may be time to move on to a job where your work will be valued and appreciated, and more importantly, where you can get the compensation you deserve.
Of course if you have never asked your boss for a raise or promotion, the problem may simply be that he or she never realized how you feel. But if after years of loyally sticking it out your request is repeatedly denied, you would be better off finding a new boss.
4. You are caught up in a complicated romance with someone at work
Generally, business and pleasure should never be mixed. If you have gotten caught up in a relationship with someone at work there is a big chance that it will start affecting your ability to do your job. If things have gotten out of hand and you feel that your professional reputation might be ruined, it may be better to look for a new work environment.
On the other hand, maybe your relationship is going extremely well, and you want to keep it going but are afraid that working with that person will distract you or put a strain on things, both at home and at work. This is another case where finding a new job may be the right thing to do.
5. Your life situation has changed
People change and situations change, and what may have once been the right job for you may no longer suit you or the life you are building for yourself. If you feel like your current job is no longer a good fit, for whatever reason, be it divorce, marriage, children or new ambitions, it might be time to reevaluate your career choice.
If any of the above points sound familiar, then quitting your job could be a solution. However, before you turn up at work, collect your things and tell your boss to find a new peon, you need to have a plan.
If you feel stuck in your current job because you need the money, why not start by finding ways to earn a passive income? You could set up an online business or blog, or maybe you have property you could rent out, or perhaps you have hobbies that could make you money, such as photography, painting or home décor.
Once you have a steady stream of income from other sources, you can afford to give up your job without the crushing fear of being unable to pay your bills.
If you are still in your job because you are afraid you won’t find a new one, start actively looking for work. You may find that there are more opportunities out there than you thought, and you’ll find that having a job while looking for a job will make you more attractive to future employers.
Maybe it’s time to branch out and start a business of your own, with all of the experience you have gained. The bottom line is that quitting your job isn’t enough.
You have to have a plan that will carry you through the lean months that will inevitably follow your decision to move on to bigger and better things.
About the Author:
Aileen Pablo is part of the team behind Open Colleges, one of Australia’s leading providers of online TAFE courses and business management courses. When not working, Aileen blogs about travel, lifestyle, and beauty tips. She is also often invited as a speaker in Personality Development Seminars in the Philippines.