Careers are not what they used to be. For the generation who is currently retiring from the workforce and the ones before that, staying in the same job, or the same company, for their entire career was the way to go. But nowadays, changing jobs has become the norm.
It shouldn’t be a decision taken lightly as it will have an impact on your career growth and opportunities (starting new somewhere else). Before diving into all the aspects of a well-planned and well-executed career transition, we wanted to start by the signals you might be ready for a change.
You might be ready for a change if
- You don’t want to go to work in the morning, like not at all
- You are feeling depressed every Sunday evening
- You already think about the upcoming weekend on Monday morning
- Your work ethic isn’t as strong as it used to be
- You feel distant from your work
- You don’t participate and engage in meetings anymore
- You stopped sharing your opinion
- You feel undervalued
- You haven’t learned anything in a while
- You don’t really care about or you disagree with the feedback you receive
- There are no career opportunities, or you’re not interested in them
- You dream of the day you’ll quit and you have a few scenarios playing in your head
- You think only a big change in your department/company would change the way you feel, not money or more benefits
- You don’t recognise yourself anymore
- You really don’t get along with your boss
- You found your purpose, and your current job is not part of it
When reviewing the list above, consider 1) how many signs you have ticked and 2) how long each of these have been relevant to you. The more signs you’ve ticked and the longer it’s been going on, the more ready you’ll be for a change.
The big red alarm
You should particularly pay attention to your health and your life. Too many times I have seen people develop sicknesses and illnesses due to work. If:
- Your mental health is impacted (anxiety, stress, etc.)
- Your physical health is impacted (fatigue, lack of focus, blood levels, etc.)
- Your job is negatively impacting your personal relationships (couple, family, etc.)
Then please take care of it. No job should ever have that much impact and no job should be more important than living a healthy, balanced life. If it is the case, you are likely not in the right job or the right company. Work with a professional coach or a therapist to explore how you feel, how you can cope with it, and what actions you can take to stop this situation.
If you’re still doubting
If you don’t recognise yourself in the list of signs above and your job/company doesn’t affect your health (mental, physical and emotional), then it might not be the right time for you to change jobs.
I recommend you explore what it is that you like about your current situation and what you’d like to change (I guess if you clicked on this article it might mean you sometimes think about leaving). If these things are in your control, go ahead and change them. It’s important you stay aware and proactive, and that you don’t arrive to a point of no return.
Trying out new things and understanding what you can get from your current job and company will help you make an informed decision when it’s time to explore new opportunities. That way you’ll leave knowing you gave it more than a try and you won’t have any regrets changing things up in your career.