1. Is your body sending you messages? Do you have lingering colds? Trouble getting out of bed on a work day?
2. Are you constantly thinking, “I can hardly wait till Friday?” Do you often watch the clock?
3. Do you frequently daydream on the job?
4. Do you call in sick even when you’re not?
5. Do you arrive late for work often?
6. Have your performance and productivity slipped?
7. Do you have many disagreements with colleagues or superiors?
8. Do you feel withdrawn at work?
9. Does the prospect of spending a whole day at work get you down?
10. Will leaving the organization enable you to achieve your career dreams more quickly?
11. Is your work damaging your self confidence? Your health? Your personal and family life? Other life facets?
Scoring: Two or more “yes” answers suggest you are dissatisfied. The more times you said “yes,” the more dissatisfied you seem to be.
To nurture your career, act
If you’re convinced a job move is in order, go for it! Here’s some advice:
- Define and overcome barriers. Describe any blocks that are preventing you from making a move. Examples could be fear of losing a secure income, pension or other benefits; fear that you will lose power, prestige; fear of having to live up to an image, making a mistake, or being embarrassed; not knowing where to begin a new job search; or guilt that change may interfere with relationships.
- Know you have many exciting options. These include changing departments in the same organization, shifting employers, changing occupational fields, becoming self employed, taking a sabbatical or going back to school for upgrading or retraining.
- Investigate alternatives. Research and planning will reduce risk. For example, if you want to return to school or start your own business, and fear reduced income, you can learn to live on less, work part-time while pursing your goal and borrow money from family or the bank.
- Avoid guilt. Don’t worry about letting everyone down, or what your colleagues may think.
- Avoid idealizing your former position. Don’t mourn a job that is no longer meeting your needs.
- Don’t stay in a job you dislike because of security. Security is wishful thinking today. But developing positive attitudes, believing in yourself, working hard, and developing the will to risk will enable you to prevail.
- Realize that change involves tradeoffs. Change may involve some temporary personal or financial sacrifices. But most Questers agree that in the long term, their gains far outweigh their losses. Greater satisfaction, independence, flexibility and control over personal and work lives are some benefits acquired.
- Listen to your self. Don’t base your self-respect on what other’s think. Listening to your feelings will help you identify what you really want. If you make the move that’s right for you, you will succeed. Better relationships with family and friends are often added benefits.
- Don’t make excuses. Be honest. If you feel stagnant, deciding to stay can be as traumatic as moving. Staying in a job with no hope of advancement or satisfaction is self defeating and risky. Stress, illness, and loss of enthusiasm, self-confidence and employability may result.
- Don’t be afraid to fail. Setbacks are learning experiences. Successful changers eliminate much failure by planning and persisting. If they do fail – and they often initially do – Do they say, “I’ve done my best. I’m only human.” Then they figure out what went wrong, modify their plans, and try again.
Dare to change
Keep the following in mind as you pursue your goal:
- State what you really want, not what others think you should have.
- Write a paragraph outlining why you want it.
- Affirm how your goal will benefit yourself and others.
- Be prepared to make tradeoffs such as living on less while you return to school.
- Work hard.
- Believe you will attain your goal.
- Have a support group or positive people with whom to associate.
- Be patient as you work toward you goal.
Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, by Dr. Carole Kanchier, offers additional suggestions for enjoying your life work. https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/15084089