“Love what you do.” This oft-repeated advice is sometimes met with cynical responses. Such skepticism is certainly understandable, given the changing realities of our economy and job markets. While National Public Radio reported that the unemployment rate has recently dropped to 4.6 percent, reasons for this remain unclear. Additionally, decreased unemployment does not always translate to happiness for those currently employed.
Many factors prompt unhappy workers to remain entrenched in a bad situation. You may feel that you lack the necessary skills and qualifications to go elsewhere. Alternatively, you could fear that conditions at other workplaces are worse than your own. In other cases, exterior forces may apply. For example, legally protected marginalized groups such as people of color and disabled individuals still sometimes face employment discrimination. Others, such as transgender people, are typically not covered by civil rights legislation. With uncertain employment prospects, there may not be much incentive for you to jump ship.
However, there are measurable disadvantages to remaining in a job that you hate. A 2014 article in the Huffington Post cited several negative consequences of staying at a bad job: weight gain, lower immunity, sleep deprivation, dysfunctional personal relationships and an increased risk of serious illness. It’s not something to simply dismiss, as long-term vocational stress in your 20s or 30s will adversely affect you in your 40s. So, if you’re seriously questioning why you’re staying, now is the time to get out.
Make a Detailed Plan
Suddenly leaping into the unknown with no plan is a bad idea. Your first step is to craft a strategy for escape. First, you need to make an honest assessment of how much longer you can realistically stay. If you’re fortunate, you could have some time to build your education and skills without needing to look for a new job straightaway. However, if your stress levels are demanding an immediate exit, don’t delay. Consider temp or contract work in the interim while you work your plan.
If more schooling is feasible, evaluate degree programs and select one that is a good fit. For example, the University of Southern California offers a master’s in health administration through its USC Online platform. Other schools such as the University of Cincinnati offer similar programs (you can learn more here). In the meantime, it’s best to keep quiet about your plans around coworkers. If your workplace is particularly untrustworthy or toxic, you could see an unexpected pink slip before you’re ready to quit.
What About Counteroffers?
Although you might not think it could happen, you must be prepared for a counteroffer from your employer after turning in your resignation. What do you do then? The additional money or benefits may look tempting, but it’s better to say “nay.” If your aim is to “love what you do,” it does not make sense to remain.
It’s Never Too Late to Get Out
Staying in a miserable job situation might seem like your only option. However, it can cost you your health and well-being. It’s best to make plans now to exit and use any remaining time to gain needed skills and education. Finally, stand firm on your commitment to leave, and be prudent in revealing your plans.
Article Submitted By Community Writer