We’ve all been there. We’ve experienced the feeling of dread, battling traffic as we drive to and from work. The lack of sleep Sunday night as your mind spins, thinking of ways to get out of work the next day. Constantly wishing you were doing something else, anything else…
Yet never feeling 100% clear that you’re meant to leave your job and find something else. After all, other people at work seem happy. You earn a decent wage, and you’ve got a roof over your head because of that job.
Here are five simple signs that you should get a better job in a minute:
1. You’re A Frog About To Be Boiled
There’s an excellent metaphor in How To Avoid Work, a book written in 1949 by a man named William J. Reilly, that goes like this:
When someone’s doing a job they don’t like, they get irritable. Their duties become monotonous, and their senses slowly dull. In this scenario, Reilly says:
“If you don’t get out now, you may end up like the frog that is placed in a pot of fresh water on the stove. As the temperature is gradually increased, the frog feels restless and uncomfortable, but not uncomfortable enough to jump out. Without being aware that a change is taking place, he is gradually lulled into unconsciousness.”
So, if you’re feeling froggish – jump out of the pot.
2. You’re Doing What You ‘Should’ Do
Ever feel like you’re constantly doing things you ‘ought to do’ instead of what you want to do?
If the real reason you’re working is to appease your parents, impress your friends, or do what you think your Great-Great Grandfather would want you to do, then you’re not being true to yourself – and you’ll eventually snap.
It’s time to tune into what you want in life, and take steps today to pursue it.
3. Work Is A Monotonous Bore
There’s a difference between doing the occasional boring task during an otherwise enjoyable work week – and working an entire job that bores the life out of you.
If you’re daydreaming of better things to escape the mind-numbing boredom, then it’s time to make those dreams come true.
4. Co-Workers Bring You Down
People around us have a huge impact on our life, and often much more than realize.
So, if you don’t get along with your team, find yourself picking up bad habits from your coworkers, or just can’t wait to get away from them… then that’s a pretty good sign the grass is greener elsewhere.
5. You Say “No” To This Question Too Many Days In A Row
Here’s the really big, final, decisive sign. It’s from Steve Jobs’ famous Stanford commencement speech, and it goes like this:
“When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”
Powerful, isn’t it?
Your Next Steps…
These tell-tale signs may have helped you come to terms with the fact that it’s time for a change – yet, as you likely know, figuring that out is the easy part.
The much more difficult part is gaining the clarity on what to do, and the courage to do it.
These are massive topics that I won’t get into here, but I’ll leave you with two of my favorite guiding questions to help you get started:
- If you knew that you only had 5 years to live, what would you do?
- If you had an endless supply of money, what would you do?
I wish you the best of luck, and an abundance of clarity and courage as you figure out your next step!