5 telltale signs to know when it’s time to leave your job

JULIE CHASE | FEBRUARY 23, 2020

Do you remember when you first started your job? You were probably excited and a bit nervous — wondering if you could even do the job. It probably feels like a lifetime ago. And you’ve not only learned how to do the job, but also mastered it.

Does this mean it’s time to move on? Maybe. Or it could be the perfect time to mix things up and focus on your personal and professional growth.

Here are 5 telltale signs to know when it’s time to leave your job:

1. You’re doing your job on autopilot.

You don’t have to think much on how to do your work. You’re comfortable in more than 80% of everything you do and most of it is pretty boring. Ask yourself if you’re excited about or proud of any of the projects you’re working on, if you’re learning something new or if you’re spending a lot of time not doing work (yet getting your work done). It’s impossible to thrive in a job when you’re not learning and growing.

2. You’re more negative than positive.

You’ve become the “glass is half empty” person. You find yourself complaining about projects, managers, colleagues more often than you’d like to admit — at the office and at home. You’re not enjoying what you’re doing and surrounding yourself with others who feel the same way. This might be a good time to list what things you can change about your situation and attitude and what things are out of your control. For example, if you’re in a toxic environment or don’t respect the leadership or don’t share the same values as the company, it’s time to move on.

3. You feel taken for granted.

You’re the go-to person for the tasks that no one else wants and do things that aren’t acknowledged or appreciated. You feel resentment, but find it impossible to push back or say no. Heed Brené Brown’s advice and practice saying “I can’t take that on” or “My plate is full” until you can say it confidently. You can also share how you’re feeling and ask for what you need — focusing on the solution and not the person.

4. You’re burned out.

Even if you love the work you do, you haven’t established healthy boundaries for yourself. You take on too many projects and go above and beyond including the things that aren’t important (I know this one all too well). Or you’re expected to produce more than is humanly possible and aren’t given enough resources. Either way, you can never get ahead. And the constant stress starts to adversely affect your physical, mental and emotional state.

5. You’re checked out.

You wake up and don’t want to go to the office. You disengage with your colleagues and don’t even engage in small talk. You do the minimal amount of work possible and view it as just a paycheck. This often happens when you can’t see the impact you’re making or you feel disconnected from the purpose of your work or the company.

If you’ve been experiencing one, two or more of these signs, it doesn’t mean you need to leave your job or company. The first step is to reflect and understand the root of each problem. Identify the things that you want to change about yourself and the things most important to you in a career. If you love your company, then explore other jobs and teams that you’re interested in.

The best advice I can share is not to make any sudden moves. Quitting a job is rarely the right solution. It’s more important to understand the underlying why for each issue and then working through them as you determine what you want to do next.

We spend one-third of our lives at work, so how you feel about your job affects every aspect of your life. When you love what you do, respect your colleagues, and are valued — you’re able to live your best self.

If one of your goals for 2020 is to make a strategic career move, then please reach out to us. We’d love to talk about your goals and how we can help you achieve them with speed, ease and success!