I, like many of you, have had to work a job that raised my stress and anxiety levels every day I had to go in, which is sad because, “for many of us, a large portion of our days are spent at work; in fact, the average person will spend 90,000 hours at work over a lifetime.” So, what do you do when you find yourself working a job you just cannot stand? This can happen for a myriad of reasons; it might be your job duties, your work environment, the commute, or the personality of your supervisor. But even though you need the paycheck every two weeks, it gets harder and harder to force yourself to go to work.
Before you use up all your sick and vacation time, avoid the temptation to just quit. The situation might be salvageable. However, even if you decide to leave, it is best to do so with a plan. You can empower yourself to face a job that no longer serves your needs with the right strategy.
Before you give in to the urge to quit, consider these tips:
Understand exactly why you do not like your job. If you can pinpoint the challenges of your current position, you might be able to resolve them. At the very least, you can ensure the next job you take does not have the same issues. So, take time to sit quietly and make a list of what you do not like? Be specific!
Your job description or duties?
Change what you can. Do you have the power to change the aspects of your job that you do not like? For example, you might be able to alter your schedule or move to a different cubicle. There might be other positions within the company that would be a better use of your skillset. Whatever you do, avoid being a victim and look for ways to change your situation.
Develop your skills. There might be aspects of your current position that you simply cannot stand. But that does not mean you cannot learn valuable skills or get the necessary experience to move to the next level. List the benefits of your current position? What existing skills can you improve? What new skills can you learn?
Be grateful. I know this sounds hard, but gratitude is a great tool to help you get through the rough spots in your life. Make a list of all the benefits of having your job. Looking for the good in any situation will give you the strength you need to hold on until you can make a change.
Plan your exit strategy. We have all dreamt of flipping over a table and yelling; I quit as we walk gallantly out the door but do not make this move too quickly. Instead, take time to identify your options. What is the best choice you can make for your long-term future?
List the qualities you are looking for in your ideal job, boss, and co-workers.
What specifically do you not like about your current position?
What companies interest you? Why?
Will you need additional training to get your ideal job?
Will your current employer pay for that training?
When was the last time you updated your resume or CV?
Who can you reach out to for advice or job leads?
What is your current financial picture?
How long will you be able to pay in bills without your current paycheck?
The most important tip I have for you is to be patient. Patience is a virtue and much needed during this time of transition. When you make decisions too quickly, you might regret them later. Taking your time will ensure that you are making the right move for yourself and your family. It might be uncomfortable now, but you will save yourself the wasted time and heartache when you do not plan your next move.
Everyone has dealt with a job they do not like; this would be a great time to reach out to a friend or trusted colleague and ask for their advice. Just know you are not alone, and before you quit, you can take a deep breath and plan your escape with intention and grace.
With Peace and Love,