Is a career change long overdue? Let’s see:
2020 is here, and people are bursting with optimism and plans for the new year. Yet you find yourself trudging back and forth to the same office every day, a place that has sucked the life out of you for the last year and shows no signs of improving or changing for the better. You are inevitably going to put up with the same boss who has overlooked you for promotion thrice in a row now.
Your colleagues who you suspect might be robots masquerading in human clothing. The interminable hours, the meetings that drone on and on for eternity, the pittance of a pay packet. You feel like your time could be put to better use; your talents better channeled. Your job itself is mind-numbingly dumb. That abounding potential you once had has been polluted and poisoned by horrible bosses and a mundane routine! You are not alone!
Are you working to the pinnacle of your abilities and yet feel like you have hit the glass ceiling? Such feelings of exasperation are all too common and lead to the inevitable inclination towards a career change. Some people may want to quit, some might consider starting their own business, some aspire to be promoted, while some think that a raise in salary is long due.
However, changing careers is a daunting step and incurs risks which some might not want to undertake. You’re thinking about a new career but how do you know if you really need a change? Could these sentiments be nothing more than normal ups and downs, or are they warning flags you need to pay attention to? Here are 8 critical reasons which would determine reliably and effectively whether you should consider a career change:
1. You Are Chronically Exhausted And Depleted
If you experience constant debilitation, tiredness, and exhaustion, you might not be satisfied with your professional life and feel burdened by it. Since most of us working class fellows spend more waking hours at work than doing anything else, it takes a toll on our body, especially if we are not fond of our jobs. Remember that if you don’t love your job, it won’t love you back, and the feeling of mutual dislike would make it over stressful for you to accomplish anything.
If a specific job or a toxic work environment is wearing you down, it might be time to consider alternatives. While the ideals tell us to find a job that we love, bills have to be paid and the most prudent option is to find a career that gives the most viable trade-off between the two.
2. Your Current Career Isn’t Challenging Enough
This might come as a shocker for most people, but the truth is that even though a slow paced, less challenging career might appeal to you in the beginning, it could have disastrous consequences on your happiness at work place. A career that keeps you on your toes about 20% of the time, without leaving you overwhelmed and facing burnout from the stress is construed as almost perfect.
A career with little or no challenging work would leave you feeling dissatisfied and unenthusiastic, plummet your morale and make you stumble into unprofessional work habits, such as surfing the internet and playing games online during working hours. If you find that you are chronically bored at work and don’t find any challenges that might leverage your skills and talents, you should consider a career change.
3. Money Can’t Make Up For Your Discontent
Most people who are discontent with their careers are reluctant to make a switch because they are hesitant to part with the money they are earning, and a new career might strip them of their amenities of life. However, at some point they begin to think that they have enough money to sustain them, yet they can’t stand how they earn their living. They start to rethink their priorities and open their eyes to all the new ways they can win their bread without giving up their lives and happiness for it.
If you have transcended to the level where even the monetary prospects can’t make you put up with your career, it is high time to consider a career change.
4. You Feel Like You Don’t Belong
As a professional, you seem to be making all the right choices when it comes to your current career, do all that is expected of you, and seem to be stepping up the corporate ladder owing to your achievements at work. However, the inner struggle that you spare to put up with your career and carve a niche becomes evident when you wake up bored to death with your career.
However, if you realize that all that you have achieved at work had been a result of pleasing others, stroking your ego, or taking every promotion that fell in your lap, you might be asking yourself the inevitable question; is this where I belong? If despite doing all the right things, the inner outcome feels wrong, you don’t belong in your career.
5. You Have The Feeling That You Are Downplaying Your Talents
Do you ever think to yourself. “I am made for better things than this”, “there’s more to life than this job”, or “I could have done so much better elsewhere”? If you do, it’s time to listen to your heart.
A corporate woman might have hidden designing éclat and passion that has no place to shine in her current career, which could be a cause for exasperation and dissatisfaction. If you feel like your talents and skills would shine better in a different career, you shouldn’t be the least bit apprehensive about a career switch and muster the courage to live your aspirations.
6. You Are Becoming Apathetic To Change
You may be carrying out your day-to-day chores perfectly, but you can’t seem to instigate innovation or bother bringing anything new to the table at your workplace. It could be that your ideas were previously snubbed at by your organization, or you work for a stick-in-a-mud company that would rather have you do your designated tasks silently and not suggest improvements. Anyone can lose motivation in such a rigid environment.
If you are bursting with great ideas but can’t seem to make them work at your current organization, it is time to make a career change. What you need is a company that welcomes and celebrates your ideas. Even if it means working for yourself, this is the path for you.
Some telltale signs to look for:
- You have lost all interest in your job and simply wait for the next paycheck.
- You are just working robotically, no longer bothering to look for advancement or promotion opportunities.
- Instead of chipping in at work, you are saving all your great ideas and suggestions for when you would find a company that would appreciate them.
7. All You Can Think About Is A Career Change
Do you frequently find yourself idling indifferently at your workstation, scratching your head, googling jobs, updating your resume, applying to places, and bookmarking companies that interest you in your browser? Do you often get carried away daydreaming about the day you would work for yourself or at a super creative place like your friend? Do you dread people asking you “what you do”, wishing you could answer differently? Do you often distract yourself by reading up on the careers and successes of other people and sighing silently inside?
Reality check: it is high time to bid adieu to your job and make a career change!
8. You Are Not Yourself Anymore
If and when those close to you start observing a significant change in your behavior or attitude, or comment on how you appear to be “constantly complaining, discontent, and stressed”, it is a sign that you need a career switch. You are not the same “inspired to go out there and take the world by storm”, creative, and uber-passionate person that you used to be, because your company does not care about your work-life balance. You are now someone who turns up late for parties with stories of a nightmare boss and bags under their eyes to vouch for it.
If your loved ones see that you are not happy in your career, you don’t have the same energy for things that used to get you all worked up, and that it is taking a toll on your mental and physical health, it’s time to reanalyze your life and think about how you can be yourself again. Even if it means ditching your current job and making a career change, so be it!