When working with my career coaching clients about how to know when it’s time to look for a new job, I always tell them that whatever they do they should not remain miserable.
We all have our ups and downs at work. Some weeks we’re super-productive. Other weeks, not so much. But how do you know when it’s time to really make a move — updating your portfolio and beginning the official career search? Here are five signs that should point you in the right direction.
You dread getting out of bed in the morning.
Do you repeatedly hit the snooze button? Do you have an overwhelming desire to remain buried under the covers, far from demands, deadlines and clamoring coworkers? One of the biggest red flags of job dissatisfaction is an unwillingness to face the day — not just some mornings, but every morning. What’s your body trying to tell you?
Your work relationships and performance are beginning to suffer.
Remember when group projects were productive, water-cooler chat was a pleasant repose and happy hour truly was happy? If lately you find yourself avoiding certain people and tasks, slacking on your reviews or really dreading the annual company picnic, chances are you’ve lost that loving feeling for your job.
You become “someone else” at work.
If you feel like you can’t be yourself at work and have become a “pretender,” don’t shrug it off — and don’t blame yourself. Every company’s culture is different. Yours may not be aligned with who you are as a person. Know there are professional people out there who embrace the same goals and values as you do. Maybe it’s time to seek them out.
The position doesn’t make use of your talents. Perhaps you’re an advertising executive who always wanted to be a chef. Perhaps your job title is “coordinator,” but you feel more like the creative type. It’s never too late to look in a new direction in terms of your career and future happiness.
You spend most of your time engaged in bitch sessions.
Sure, we all love to commiserate over frustrating aspects of our jobs. But if most of your hours at work are spent feeding negative thoughts and generally complaining, that’s a huge sign it may be time to pack it in. Find a new career in an environment that feels more rewarding and in line with your talents. You can do it.
If you’ve done all you can to improve things, but your job still makes you miserable, do something about it. Take a few steps forward each week. Stay after work and compile your portfolio. Get that resume updated. Search the career websites to see what’s out there. Take a few personality tests to help you identify your strengths.
When we feel unhappy or unsatisfied about things, it’s safe to say it’s time to find something out there that’s better suited to us. Where do you want to go next?
All the best for a rewarding and fulfilling career doing what you love!