Strip back the friendships forged with colleagues, career progression and personal growth and our time at work boils down to one thing: money.
There’s absolutely no harm in admitting that you go to work to earn money. It’s what pays the bills and keeps us fed, after all. It’s why we all try our hardest to hold down a job that rewards fairly and offers some security.
But what if the money that consistently enters your bank account at the end of every month simply doesn’t seem to be worth it any more? What if every hour you spend in the workplace is an hour you wish would end?
When searching for the ‘perfect’ career, we’re often told to search for something we love doing, while others prefer to look for solace in jobs that keep them occupied and have a curious, intangible lure. Put simply, you need to find something that makes you happy.
If you have a hunch that you’re not happy at work, but can’t pinpoint the specific symptoms, I’ve got five killer signs you need to find a way out of your current job.
1. Sundays Hurt
Weekends flash by at breakneck pace. They never seem long enough, and the joy felt on a Friday night as you kick off your work shoes and let every ounce of stress drain from your body is soon countered by the Sunday night feeling.
If your heart begins to sink gradually as you head into Sunday evening and you can feel it doing so consistently every week, it’s time to look seriously at your career. Sundays shouldn’t hurt.
2. You’re Drifting Off During Meetings
We live in a world full of pointless meetings, but if you’re still struggling to stay engaged during the more important departmental gatherings, there’s a good chance you need to look beyond your current job.
The next time you’re at a meeting you know is of significance, ask yourself if you care about the topics being discussed. If the answer is a solid “no”, your emotional connection to the business is probably waning.
3. You Feel Too Comfortable
There’s nothing wrong with being comfortable at work, but if you get too comfortable, it’s usually for the wrong reasons.
As humans, we’re naturally curious, adventurous animals. If you’ve held the same job with the same responsibilities at the same business for a significant amount of time and the work itself feels like a routine, you’re probably too comfortable. It’s possible to be unhappy and comfortable at the same time. Sure, the money rolls in consistently, but is this really want you want for the rest of your working life?
4. You Feel Trapped
Work should never feel akin to being in prison. If you feel like you simply can’t move on, you need no further reason to actually get out there and do so. It’s your career – no one else’s.
5. You Feel Like An Outsider
Your colleagues used to feel like good friends, but recently, they’ve started to feel like strangers. You no longer share the laughs you once did and their priorities seem to be wildly different to your own.
People change. You change. If your colleagues appear to be moving in a different direction to you collectively and you’re starting to feel like an outsider, it’s probably because they’re far more connected to the business. Somewhere along the line, you lost that connection. There’s no harm in that, but it’s a sure sign you need to move on.
This guide is for everyone; it doesn’t matter if you’re working the shop floor or making key strategic decisions in the board room – at some stage, we all reach the end of the line while working a particular job. If just one of the symptoms above rings true and is forever on your mind, it’s time to start that job hunt.