It’s no mystery that most people are unsatisfied in their jobs. Statistics show that more than 70% of the U.S. workforce is unhappy with their current jobs.
Why is this happening in this great and free country? Don’t we ALL have more resources and opportunity than any other place on Earth? If so, why are we all sitting around complaining about our miserable jobs? There are many answers to this question of course, but I think that the most pressing ones are:
• We have allowed ourselves to become dependent on easy money. What I mean by easy money is that our society tells us that it’s okay to push papers around our desks for 8 hours a day and collect a paycheck for it.
• We are becoming more aware by the day to the fact that there is unlimited opportunity to create the life we want and justly deserve. The “passion” movement, which states that we are able to earn a living following our passions and doing what we love is becoming a common theme. More and more people are starting to believe that there is more to life than wasting away in a job they hate.
One problem is that most of us are not rewarded for outstanding productivity, but rather on the hours we log. It’s a completely flawed system that breeds laziness, inaction, manipulation, and greed.
We are not taught to pursue our dreams but instead we are told that we need to be realistic. We are raised to follow a set of preordained guidelines that lead to a life of mediocraty, not excellence. It simply does not make any sense.
If you want to quit your job, and Lord knows most of us do, then you really need to ask yourself these questions. The key here is being honest with yourself. Failing to answer these questions completely honestly may result in putting yourself in a worse position.
Ask yourself these 5 questions:
1. Why do I want to quit? This sound simple, yet most of us don’t know the real reason why we feel the need to quit. Maybe we are just bored and the answer is working on a different project. Maybe we hate a specific coworker and if they left, we would be fine. And maybe we are just stuck in a rut and all we need is some valuable time away to clear our heads.
Most of you can make yourselves be happy at work by staying positive, doing a great job, and rising up the corporate ladder. But some of you can’t. Some of you know deep down that your job is wrong for you.
If the job is truly something that is wrong for you and/or goes against your morals, then you may have a valid reason. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all for pursuing your passion in place of staying at a dreadfully boring job, but don’t jump ship at the first sign of discontentment.
2. What do I want to do instead? Do you want another job? Will you be happy doing something similar? Is your current field challenging and/or stimulating. Are you actually interested in your current line of work?
Do not make the mistake of quitting your job because you simply cannot handle it any longer only to find yourself scrambling to find any job because you’re running out of money. Chances are, you’ll end up right back where you started. The only difference will be that you now work for a new company and have to start at the bottom of the rung again.
3. Can I afford to quit? If you don’t have another job lined up, you better know for certain that you can manage to pay your bills if you cannot find another job right away. This is the biggest reason that people don’t quit-they’re scared to death that they won’t be able to pay their bills. And while this is a very valid concern, it’s also a trap that can keep you stuck in a lifelong grind of misery.
Quitting a job, especially one you’ve had for a long time, is extremely scary. If you are uncertain about your ability to cover your living expenses, you have two choices:
- Craft a detailed cash flow worksheet and find out exactly how much money you have versus how much money you will need to cover your expenses based on being without a job. The general rule of thumb is to have 3-6 months of cash reserves in place.
- Hustle your butt off. If you absolutely cannot stand one more second at your soul sucking job and feel as though you must quit, then be prepared to hustle like you’ve never hustled before.
You will have to get creative with your finances for sure. Selling old stuff, doing odd jobs, creating a side business, and generally getting uncomfortable will all be part of the process if you choose option 2.
For many for you, the thought of all of that is too much to bear and will keep you in your jobs. For others, the risk of leaving a secure job in order to pursue something that means something to them will be tolerable and worth the risk.
4. Will I be happy working for someone else? Some of you are entrepreneurs trapped in a cubicle. Are you one of them? If so, you may never be happy working for the man. You need to be “the man”. Hopping from job to job thinking there’s something wrong with them is often the result of having the entrepreneurial mindset.
5. What don’t I like about my job? Write out a checklist of all the things you dislike about your current job. Is it the pay? Is it your arrogant boss? Is it the lack of flexibility? Make sure you know exactly what you don’t want in your next job and then spend as much time necessary finding a job that meets your criteria. Are you ever going to find the “perfect” job? Probably not, but you can find one that will keep you happy for a while.
And if you don’t go the job route, why not create a business that will allow you to enjoy the things you value most?
Taking the Plunge
There is no doubt about it that quitting your job is scary. The mere thought of it may have many of you shaking in your chairs. Much of the fear can be removed by answering the above questions and truly understanding what it is you want in a career and then carefully planning to go get it.
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Author: Steve Roy
Steve Roy is the owner of EndingTheGrind.com, a blog about escaping the daily grind of a 9 to 5 job, building an online business, and living your passions.You can also find him on Twitter at @EndGrind