I just got a message from someone telling me that he finally had a talk with his bosses about phasing out his work and leaving his job over the next couple months. He said he is feeling scared and excited all at once.
Ah, I know that feeling. So do my clients.
The thing is that you can be scared and feel fear, but at the same time feel in your bones that this is the right thing for you to do. The right next step towards the life that you want. You can be scared about leaving the comfort zone of your current work situation, but also know you really want to and be excited for what the future will bring.
I thought I'd list off some of the common reasons I hear of why people leave their job. I thought this would be helpful in case anyone might be wondering if how they're feeling is a "good enough" reason to leave their job.
I think these are totally legit reasons to leave your job. But when it comes down to it you don't really need a reason other than that you don't want to do the job/work there anymore. It's as simple as that. In reality, you don't have to justify your life choices to anyone. We're adults now.
You're not jazzed about the work
This can run the gamut from "I'm moderately happy with my work, but I know there's something else I'm meant to be using my talents for" to "I totally hate my work and it's painful to keep having to do it every day."
It's not serving your wellness - physically or mentally
Maybe the culture at work has you entering a twilight zone where people are robots and don't need to eat well, exercise, spend time with friends and family, have relaxation time etc. Maybe you're finding yourself getting sick more often that you would think is normal. Stress has a direct impact on your immune system. It also impacts your ability to handle emotional stressors. So if you're feeling more anxiety and/or generally emotional it could be because you're too stressed. While of course in my work with clients we will discuss what's stressing them and see if we can reduce the stress levels, but if the cause of the stress is less you and more due to how the company is run and/or workplace culture then an exit may be in order.
The hours are crazy
And maybe aren't even justified by the salary. There's a Japanese word, "karoshi," that means to literally die of working too much. It's a thing.
Maybe you want to be able to spend more time with your kids, your dog, your partner, or just with yourself (hello Me time!). Maybe you have a dream of writing a book (or other soul nurturing and exciting thing you want to do) and will need more spare time to do it. We are more than our jobs/careers. We're allowed to do what we need to find careers/job situations that can fit in our life.
You've got money goals
While I don't advocate money being a priority over your happiness, money can be an important factor in our lives. So, if you think there's a job out there you'll enjoy doing that will pay you more and you think the extra cash will make a positive difference to your quality of life then by all means. There’s nothing wrong with wanting some more cash.
You just don't want to do this work/work there anymore
Just trying to emphasize here that you're a free agent. We always have a choice and don't need a "good enough" reason or a reason that our parents (or whomever) will approve of to be able to do whatever the heck we want in life. You're in charge of your life.
Ok so then I might hear someone say "What about my resume?" or "If I leave my job, how it will look to other people?" or some concern along those lines. I get it. We tend to have this notion in society that our life needs to be able to be easily explained in a very logical fashion to show a narrative to other people. And that narrative can't have big twists and turns or show any vulnerability through gaps in the resume or making a "mistake." It's supposed to be one smooth progression. But, the thing is that life just does not work that way. And if you try to live your life and make decisions by what it will look like on your resume or to create a pretty narrative to avoid the judgment of others, you're likely to find yourself pretty unhappy.
What about responsibilities? Like paying for your life. Well, I'm not advocating for putting yourself or your family/any dependents at risk. I'm advocating for you to take a look at what is making you unhappy and see what we can do about it. We can always do something about it. Even if you don't know what that is right now. That's why I'm here to help. Life is too damn short to be unhappy.