8 Signs You Should Quit Your Job To Find Something That Makes You Happy

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should i quit my job

Every now and then, you keep thinking to yourself, "Should I quit my job?"

There are many good reasons for leaving a job and making a career change. As for you, the time you spend at work often exceeds the time you are with the most precious people in your life. 

You may feel a responsibility, an allegiance, to the company that pays your salary. But, then things changed and you lost that sense of loyalty and passion for the work you do. 

Do you know how to tell when it's time to resign and move on from a job that no longer makes you happy?

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One-third of your life is spent working and another third of your life is spent sleeping, which leaves the last third to do all the other things in your life that you want to do.

Now that puts a lot of pressure on, doesn’t it? Should you spend that work time being happy about what you do so you can enjoy the other two-thirds of your life?

Career transitions are not for the faint of heart. A career or job change can be one of the most stressful transitions we can make.

So, it’s no wonder you may be putting it off, holding out for things to get better so you can be happy again. You wish for that boss to value your work. You hope for the toxic co-worker to keep his negative attitude to himself.

Changes can be hard to make and they are even harder when someone else makes the decision for you. When you are unhappy doing what you spend 40 or more hours a week doing, it will wear you down. 

Your personality may begin to change because of how you feel about your work environment and what you do within that space.

This is a good time to sit up and take notice before it’s too late to make a choice of your own accord.

But, before you pen your letter of resignation and turn in your two weeks notice, you need to know some tell-tale signs that can indicate you’re ready for a change.

You may start to sense that one or two of these are true for you. Or, you might go down this list and say, "Check. Check. Check. Check. Check!" Pay attention to how you’re feeling and what you’re thinking so you can choose your next steps to find happiness in your life.

With that, here are the 8 signs that it's time to quit and resign from your job and move on to something better.

1. You feel complacent

After the learning curve flattened and you mastered the new challenges, there was nothing new to pique your interest or get the creative juices flowing again. And that was it. That was the job.

So, you show up every day and do that. You’re comfortable. You do the work and you get complacent thinking, "This is good enough."

When you go to your manager to inquire about doing more and she tells you, "That’s the job", you may want to consider how you feel about continuing to do that every day.

2. You lower your standards

You walked into this company with high expectations that you would learn and grow, move up, feel challenged, and increase your skills and your salary. 

When this doesn’t happen, even when you are patient and continue to wait, you may find yourself feeling like you could not care less if it happens at all.

This will become an energy drain and you will feel hard-pressed to muster what it takes to even do what you were hired to do. Your own standards are compromised.

3. You idle in place

As you start feeling complacent and lowering your standards, you may find that you’re going nowhere fast. You’ve put your engine in neutral. You are bored and disconnected from the work you are doing, your co-workers, and the company.

You feel unmotivated and as though you’re just going through the motions. If this is where you are, in neutral, it is likely someone is taking notice.

If you are typically an energetic self-starter, always looking for the next challenge, you are not a good fit for this environment. You may want to move on from the job and start looking for something that is much better suited and will enrich your life, rather than zap your energy.

4. You make poor decisions

Careless mistakes can happen when you’re not focused and have lost all concentration. You may feel a lack of commitment to this job because it isn’t feeding your soul. If you are expected to provide direction to others and the choices you make are haphazard, others may suffer the consequences.

Taking co-workers down with you is likely the last thing you intended, so making a change sooner, rather than later, could be the best course of action.

5. You take work home with you

If you struggle with one or more of these symptoms, it’s hard not to let your soul-sucking job come home with you. You may find yourself complaining about every aspect of the job, even if some are not so bad.

Since this job drains every ounce of life from your body during the day, you come home irritable and cranky, taking it out on people who have nothing to do with the job that makes you miserable.

It’s really difficult to compartmentalize and not allow your bad attitude to permeate the other areas of your life. It’s better to step back and take notice of the effect your experience with the job is having on your family and friends.

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6. You don't want to get up on Mondays

Who hasn’t felt this every once in a while? After a long weekend, or a fabulous vacation, or a late Sunday night?

It’s not the every once in a while you need to worry about. It’s when that feeling hits you every Monday morning or, even worse, every workday morning. You switch into survival mode and push yourself through another day at the office, feeling unmotivated, discontented — just plain unhappy. 

This is another sure sign it’s time to move on to another job.

7. The job is harming your health

Working in an organization whose culture condones mistreatment, or whose employee relationships are dysfunctional, is not an environment anyone should choose to work within.  The unfortunate thing is we often don’t know what the corporate culture is until we’ve already committed to working there — and it may take some time to put all the pieces together.

If you are feeling undervalued or undermined by co-workers and the management team seems on board with that behavior, start looking elsewhere — and fast. 

This can become an unbearable situation, agonizing even. It can undermine your own health, causing stress and impacting your own confidence and self-worth. These are qualities that must be safeguarded at all costs, as they are part of who you are. 

No one has the right to rob you of yourself.

8. The writing is on the proverbial wall

Probably the most evident sign for when to move on from a job is when you notice your co-workers leaving in droves. Or you may see the corporate culture is shifting due to a new management team and it no longer feels like it’s a good fit for you. 

Another sign may be that people have left your department and all their work gets moved to your desk, raising unrealistic expectations of your role.

None of these are within your control, for sure. What is in your control? Your response to the changing situation.

No matter your reason for leaving a job, how do you decide when it's time to move on from your job?

Whether you’ve checked off several boxes because the shoe fits or your situation is different and you are contemplating a change of job or career for some other reason, you may want to explore some of these questions.

Answering them honestly before you choose your next move may help to make this next decision one that will support and empower you to feel like it’s a good fit for sure.

  1. "What motivates me to get up in the morning?"
  2. "What are my personal core values?"
  3. "What do I value in a work environment?"
  4. "Will this work be meaningful to me?"
  5. "What value do I bring to this work?"
  6. "Am I doing what I love? Or am I just doing what I’m good at?"
  7. "Do I wholeheartedly support the mission and values of this organization?"
  8. "Am I a good fit within the corporate culture?"

Are you feeling any of the signs that it’s time to move on so you can start learning how to be happy with your life again? 

Maybe some of the signs are not quite so obvious or maybe they are mired in beliefs that are holding you back from making the necessary change.

If you are in a job that is stealing your self-esteem and causing you to question your value...stop. It's time for you to think seriously about when to move on from a job you’re holding on to for dear life. Consider the real reasons you are holding on.

Are you willing to do one courageous thing and start the process of looking? Do it for yourself, for your health, for all the other people and aspects of your life that this job negatively affects. 

One step at a time.

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María Tomás-Keegan is a certified Career and Life Coach for Women and founder of Transition & Thrive with María. 

This article was originally published at TransitionAndThriveWithMaria.com. Reprinted with permission from the author.