Is It Your Time for Change?

Are you finding it harder and harder to face Mondays? Having difficulty staying focused in your work? Maybe experiencing a prolonged lack of passion or excitement about what you do at work?

These may be signs you’ve reached the end of your ‘job’ rope. Sometimes we are the last to know, ignoring messages from co-workers, friends, family, and the Universe. We can become so focused on survival, we forget that work isn’t something you are supposed to be surviving, it’s where you should be thriving! 

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

We’ve all had a rough day, or week, or even month, at work. Most of us have experienced disappointments like a failed project or case, relationship challenges with a boss or coworker, or a major organizational change. But then there’s the ever-increasing job dissatisfaction that builds over time and begins to seriously affect your joy and productivity. 

According to Stacy Cowan, founder of Urban Legal Recruitment, “Typically by the time candidates apply with us, they’ve been thinking about making a change for 6+ months. In my experience, people stay in positions past their expiry date because they like their coworkers, are comfortable even if they know there isn’t long term potential for them, and just generally fear the unknown, which is a completely human response.”

So, how do you determine if you should be looking for a new job or career, or just undergoing short term discomfort? How you feel and behave are indicators.

How you’re feeling

Our feelings are our internal GPS/emotional guidance system that are constantly signaling messages to us. People can be very good at ignoring their feelings for long periods of time, which can lead to illness. 

Are you feeling:

  • like you are met with internal and external resistance on a daily basis, coming home more tired than usual?
  • a sense of dread when you think about your future (whether it’s tomorrow or 5 years from now)?
  • a lack of enthusiasm for things you normally enjoy? 
  • fear or panic when thinking about your work?
  • a sick feeling, like your stomach in knots, when you go or log into work?

What you’re doing

  • Along with ignoring our feelings, here are some things we may be doing to help us cope.
  • Overindulging - whether food, alcohol, sleep, or any other activity to distract and soothe
  • Overreacting - short tempered, judgemental, intolerant
  • Underreacting - apathetic, withdrawing, isolating 
  • Underperforming - struggling to complete your work

What can you be doing?

Start by listing things you absolutely love about your job, aspects you can live with, and grievances that cause ongoing distress. Is the problem corporate culture, your boss, a particular coworker, boredom/monotony, the industry, remuneration or a lack purpose and meaning?  

If there are many things you love about your job, you may want to reconsider jumping ship. But if it becomes painfully obvious that your job or career is no longer a good fit for you, don’t panic. Plan. Most of us can’t just pack up our desks without consequence, and need to plan our escape. 

  1. Maintain your work ethic in your current job. Continue to do your best work and be the best leader/employee/coworker you can be. Knowing you’re actively implementing an exit strategy makes it much easier to perform. 
  2. Figure out what your strengths and skills are and how you want to employ them. Are you in the right career but wrong place? Or the wrong career altogether? There are many career resources available to help you find your way. Here’s just one example. 
  3. Keep networking and making new contacts. Find a mentor or hire a business coach. 
  4. Figure out your financial situation. Can you afford to just stop working or will it have to be a more gradual transition?

This guy, who went from English teacher, to attorney, to video game creator, to highly successful toilet paper salesman, has some good advice on changing careers.  

Stacy advises candidates: “Do a self check-in - are you in the flow with work and feeling on purpose? There should be an ease in your every day when you are where you should be.” 

Sometimes we just need to slow down long enough to listen and trust that our feelings are steering us towards a better job and a much brighter future.Your transition strategy requires specific goals and timelines, but be prepared to be flexible. Reach out for help as needed and be patient with yourself. Transitioning to a new job or career is a journey, not a jaunt.

Life. Career. Opportunity Awaits. If you have any questions, are considering a change, or just want to chat, we would love to hear from you. 

At Urban Legal Recruitment, we have experienced, along with our clients, the impacts of COVID-19.  We’ve made the necessary adjustments to ensure the safety of our team members and our clients.