What is it that keeps us working in an environment that we are miserable in? Is it fear, money, or are we all just on auto-pilot and continue doing it because it’s what we know? I bring this up as I hear from so many people on a daily basis how they “hate their lives” or their job and I hear them screaming underneath to be free from their workplace.
I understand this fear of walking away from your career or job though, it seems like yesterday that I walked away from my career of over 20 years. Truth is, I loved my career, I felt significance from my career and certainty. I enjoyed helping others and I felt that I was giving back and doing something important. But when you begin to find it hard to get out of bed to get to work and you don’t feel the same joy that your job brought you in the past you need to stop and examine what has changed for you.
A job should make you feel good about going to it every day, it should make you feel like you are contributing to something whether it’s to a population, to society, to women, men, or to your family. It should make you feel good about yourself and yes you will have bad days but you will mostly have good days. Being stuck in a job because you have car payments or mortgage payments should not be the only reason to stay. So, if you feel unhappy most days, you begin to see your energy levels change or see your mood change and if your moods and energy never seem to improve that is a good indication it’s time to examine your why.
I’ve seen people become ill from staying at their jobs too long, I’ve seen them sacrifice their families and their health by staying in a job, and by the time they seek out a coach they are not in a good space and it seems that it’s just by a thread that they are hanging on. So, when is it right to leave your career or job?
When you find yourself sick, getting colds often, suffering from the pain of inflammation and you begin to see it affect your daily living in a big way. I like to call it the “Living Zombie” effect. You know when you drive to and from work and you don’t remember how you got home or how you got to work? When you see people doing the same thing over and over every day but they have this “glazed” overlook in their eyes because they are not really operation the body anymore it’s just a daily thing they do and there requires no brain power to get them through it. When your job begins to make you sick because the stress of it is high and there is no relief of it getting better, it’s time to go. After all, why would you stay in a workplace that makes you ill?
Here are some clues to walk away:
- You are filled with dread upon waking
- You don’t know what day it is and the days just seem to roll into the next
- You have been diagnosed with an illness or disease
- Your relationship or health is failing
- You think everyday about leaving and wonder or stress about it
- You feel to tired or unmotivated to do anything social and want to do nothing but stay home and binge watch netflix
- You have no emotions
- There is no happiness in your life
So, how do you leave when it pays the bills and makes you comfortable? When you know you want to leave and you just struggle to do it because you are afraid of the unknown it’s time to sit down and create a strategy to leave. Here are some tips to prepare:
- Decide- Just making the decision to leave is a huge step.
- Set a Date – Take out your calendar and set a date to walk away.
- Save – Figure out how much money you will need to live off of for at least 3 months is what experts say you should be ahead financially. So, begin to make a monthly budget of how much money you need to save every month so that you have some savings by the date that you set out for yourself to leave.
- Reflect – What do you want to be doing, truly doing with your life? Whether you get another job or start your own business, really think about what it is that you want to be doing with your life, without fear!
- Say it! – Tell your friends and your circle about what you are planning on doing, tell them the date that you are going to leave your job, you hold yourself and they will hold you accountable for making that decision.
- Stay away – If you have people in your life that tell you that you should stay where you are for some reason or another avoid that person for at least the amount of time that you are still working. We are creatures of needing approval from our circles and you don’t want them to sway your decision, after all, it’s you that has to live with that not them.
The reality is for a lot of us that we need to have that paycheck to afford our daily needs but when you find that your workplace is a place that brings about dread, illness, dis-ease, stress and makes you small, is abusive, and doesn’t contribute in any way to your mental well-being or sense of purpose then it’s truly time to walk away.
Joanne Hughes is a Men’s Breakthrough Coach helping you to break through limiting beliefs and mindsets that hold you back from living your authentic life. You can find Joanne and her programs at www.joannehughescoaching.ca