You Should Quit Your Job Today (4 Signs Your Current Job is Killing You)
CB Barthlow, Director of Development – Shop Marketing & Creative Croup
I hope you have at least one person in your life who can be brutally honest with you. One person, be it friend, colleague, sibling or spouse who’s not afraid to tell you that you have toilet paper on your shoe or spinach in your teeth. Someone to tell you the truth even when it’s not what you want to hear.
A personal confrontation with the cold hard truth can be a powerful driver for change in our personal and professional lives. Sure, not all truth is received well and sometimes the delivery is even worse but even the ill-conceived and misdirected truth has a way of challenging our old ways of thinking, working and living.
With that said, I’m going out on a limb today and shooting straight with you. You should quit your job, today. No seriously, you should jump ship, put in your two weeks, tell those people to shove it and get out of Dodge.
I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right, I don’t know you and that’s an asinine assertion for a stranger to make. However, you chose to read a LinkedIn blog called You Should Quit Your Job… Today, so I know you’re not satisfied with where you’re at and that you’ve thought about quitting your job before. Truly satisfied professionals brush off this kind of content because it has no relevance to them, but you, you stopped because you thought there may be something here you could use and you’re right.
Sure, maybe the way you’ve been feeling about your job is temporary. We all go through seasons where we’re dissatisfied with the people and places we work. For some, these seasons are predictable, cyclical and a natural part of our careers. I’m not talking to you. I’m talking to those of you for whom this feeling of dissatisfaction, this season of frustration, is starting to seem less like a temporary situation and more like a permanent state of being.
So how do you know the difference? How can you tell if you’re just in a rough patch at your current position or if you’ve been planted in dry ground, never to bloom again? Here are four red-flag behavioral patterns that indicate that it’s time for you to quit your job, and fast:
- You’ve Become a Complainer: Whether you call it venting, blowing off steam, or just decompressing, the time you spend detailing the faults of your company and your colleagues has begun to increase lately. If you’ve found that you’re not just commiserating with friends, but you’re complaining to any open ear then you’re in trouble. If you’re not happy about what you do and the only thing you’ve been doing is talking about it, you’ve become a complainer. This kind of long-term negative speech has great power and can permeate nearly every other part of your life. If your words are negative, your life will be too. When you look in the mirror tomorrow morning, ask yourself if you’re Debbie-Downer?
- You’re Not Personally Fulfilled: Some of us take positions just to pay the bills, others stay in jobs for the benefits, whatever your reason for working, it’s not uncommon to be in a position that doesn’t match with who you are or what you love. Millions of working professionals wish they could jump into the world of art or music, or any number of vocations that offer more personal fulfillment but far less financial benefit; you’re not alone here. The questions to ask yourself are: “Is there any part of this job that feeds both sides of my brain? Am I able to be creative, strategic or even silly when I want to?” If the answer to those questions are no, you’re in danger of becoming a robot. Did you ever dream of being a robot when you were a child? I didn’t think so.
- Your Process is Your Priority: Organization is key to any successful career and we’re all different in how we organize our work. Some people live by the calendar, others are the king of the file and folder structure, and some of us couldn’t survive without our lists, but how you organize your work is not as important as the work you’re organizing. If you’ve become the kind of worker whose sole goal is to check boxes off the list, complete your tasks, get through the schedule or put everything away, you’re missing the point entirely. Work is about what we do, what we create and where we go. If all you do is take direction and fulfill demand, you’re not really doing anything other than biding your time and reacting to your environment. A reactive life is no life at all. You don’t want your tombstone to read “Did What Was Asked of Her”, do you?
- You’ve Stopped Reading: The most brilliant people are also the most eager to learn new things. Quite simply, the acquisition of knowledge positions us to grow and move forward in our personal and professional lives. Reading is power and whether it’s a training manual, an industry trade or leisure time novel, finding time to read is imperative for anyone looking to get better. If you’re not actively learning and reading up on the latest news in your industry you may have stagnated professionally and that’s bad but if you’re also not reading in your spare time you may be in danger of a full mental stagnation and that’s even worse. If you’re not reading at all lately it might be time for a big change in your life. So make a change or start simple and re-read Goodnight Moon, it’s still good after all these years.
The behaviors listed above are more than just coping mechanisms employed by dissatisfied workers; they are systemic indicators that you are compromising too much of yourself to keep a steady job. If you found yourself guilty of any of the above behavioral patterns, I want to tell you the truth: Today is the day you should quit your job.
Simply put, no amount of stable income will make up for the long-term consequences of negative thinking, lowered self-worth, diminished initiative or stagnated learning. By staying in a job that makes you any of the above, you are doing more harm than good to yourself and those you love.
Take a chance, leave the still waters of this safe position that’s quietly killing you, and jump into the raging river of uncertainty, there’s something great in that current and who knows, you may love where it leads you.