How To Know That You Should Quit Your Job, Even When You Can't Afford To
This post isn't going to be your regular "you should quit your job" post. I'm not going to sell you on entrepreneurship and I'm not going to advise you to wait until you have every detail figured out about your next move. This post is for the people who are miserable at their jobs, want to quit, but don't have six months of earnings in savings. This is for the people who sit in their cars before work and talk with God about quitting before going in, but feel like they are trapped because of student loan debt. This post is for people like me.
After wanting to quit my job for the past four months, I finally put in my notice and I am both scared and exhilarated. I postponed quitting my job because although I have been making money through Quirktastic, it's not as consistent as I'd like for my expenses and I honestly worried about what people would say. I have one of those jobs that sounds sexy on paper: cytogenetic technologist. To go from being a scientist to someone who works for herself, I felt like my ego would take a major hit. Oh also, I stayed because I am in a lot of debt. I really felt like I couldn't afford to leave my job. Then one day recently, I realized that I was being unfair to myself. I was miserable and I needed to quit.
If any of this sounds like you, you are most likely looking for a sign to quit your job. While every person has their own signs that they are given about questions they ask, here are some surefire ways to know that you may need to quit your job, even if you can't afford to:
1. Your job is causing your mental or physical health harm
There is a difference between the typical "I can't stand this place" talk that you do with co-workers and the mental drainage that come when you think about your job and aren't even on the clock yet. If your job is causing you to have panic attacks, anxiety attacks or severe depression, it is time to leave.
I knew that it was time to leave my career job when I realized that my whole personality and mood changed as soon as I got into work mode. I would go from being my fun and jovial self to turning into a depressed emotionless zombie as soon as I would get in my car to drive to work. To my second point, if your job is causing you any physical harm or has the potential too, I would consult your doctor and see what should be done.
2. You aren't the best at your job and never will be
If you are at a job that you already don't like and also feel like there is a personality trait that will prevent you from ever being the best at your job, you are wasting your time. For example, if you currently have a job in sales but the thought of selling a product/service that you don't believe in makes you feel sick because you are a minimalist, you will never be the best at your job. If your job requires hours of focused and concentrated work, yet you have a short attention span, you will never be the best at your job. If you have a job in the medical field but the thought of giving someone a pill disgusts you because you feel like they just need to eat better, you may need to reevaluate how you can tweak your career field. Staying at a job that you know you will never advance in or be the best in while sticking to your morals wastes both your time and your employer's time.
3. You ask for signs from God/the universe and you keep receiving them
If you are on your journey for growth and want to grow faster, the best thing that you can learn is how you best receive signs from God/the universe. For me, God knows that I am stubborn. I will take a hard sign from the universe and see it as a challenge to keep going instead of stopping and evaluating why I'm still going. When looking in retrospect, however, I can remember the nagging feelings my intuition would give me in certain situations and recall the amount of articles, podcasts and comments from others that were the signs that I was asking for. If you are asking for a sign and you keep running into media or random comments that have to do with the topic your are asking the sign for, you need to listen.
For me, when it came to putting in my notice for my job, there were several signs. I learned to follow these signs because they were similar to the ones I received when I asked for signs about whether or not to continue my pursuit of medical school. Every week, I would run into an article or podcast about someone who had a story that sounded similar to mine. People started asking me more and more if I liked my job and I was tired of lying. Everyone around me who had life less figured out than I did was quitting the job that they hated, yet for some reason I felt like I couldn't.
My final sign was when my mother told me that I should quit my job. Before I called her, I told God that if my mother, who is a very logical woman, was in support of me putting in my notice, I would quit my job. As soon as we got off the phone, I made the decision.
4.You are in your 20s/30s and are miserable
My mother had to put this in perspective for me. When I called her, she told me that I am too young and too talented to be stuck at a job that I'm miserable at. Life is too short and if all else fails, there are other jobs. My best friend also chimed in and said that the 20s and 30s in this generation is the time that we are supposed to take risks and the time that it is okay to fall down on our face if it comes to it.
5. You know that you won't let yourself fail
Think about the worst case scenario if you quit your current job. What would happen if you completely fall on your face? Do you have the type of personality that would just let your life go to sh*t or would you make conscious efforts to figure out what fulfills you in life? Do you feel like you have the power to manifest good things in your life?
Before I made the final decision to write my notice, I listened to The Strangest Secret by Earl Nightingale (skip to 20:00) at least four times. The gist of the secret is that we are what we think about all day long as well as how our thoughts about ourselves control our destiny. These are two important concepts that you and I will both have to master in this next chapter of life. If you truly believe that you will not let yourself fail, you will not fail.