5 clues it’s time to get a new job

Sometimes leaving is difficult

I remember packing up my office a few years ago. I started this particular job at age 24 and at age 35 I was saying good-bye—forever. Surrounded by more than a dozen boxes of books I found myself thinking: Now I know why people end up staying in their day jobs. It’s far less complicated.  

When you choose to leave your day job you’re signing up for change. (Share on TwitterFacebook | Google+ | LinkedIn)

A new environment. A new pace. A new gig. It can be scary and I had become a creature of habit. Although born with an entrepreneurial bent, slowly I began to crave safety and security. At my day job:

  • I knew my co-workers.
  • I knew the rules.
  • I knew the routine.

Married and a father of 3 young ones, I didn’t want to make a dumb decision. Failure wasn’t an option and so naturally, I did tons of soul-searching before I made any move. I wanted to be sure I was doing the right thing.

I remember chatting with one of my mentors at the time. He gave me excellent insight by helping me realize there’s a time to stay and a time to quit.

5 clues it’s time to stay

1. When you’re bored.
2. When you’re running from improvement.
3. When you’re escaping your current assignment.
4. When you haven’t paid the price.
5. When you think you’re better than the people around you.

5 clues it’s time to quit

1. When you’ve fulfilled your calling.
2. When you’re being pulled toward improvement.
3. When you’re embracing a new assignment.
4. When you’ve reached your potential.
5. When you’ve learned as much as you can from the people around you.

Sometimes staying is suicide

Based on his 5 clues I knew my departure was inevitable. Regardless, it still didn’t erase the risk.

Once I confronted the brutal truth I went from Day Job to Dream Job rather quicklyLooking back, it was one of the best decisions of my life. Sure it was difficult. I loved my colleagues and I felt deeply connected to the people I served.

But in the end, choosing not to leave my job was the same thing as choosing to stay. (Share on Twitter | Facebook | Google+ | LinkedIn)

That truth made me incredibly uncomfortable. And so I embraced uncertainty and adventure instead.

Sometimes staying is suicide. Don’t misunderstand, you won’t die at once. But slowly over time, you’ll lose pieces of who you are. Your confidence and clarity will erode. You’ll start playing NOT TO LOSE instead of PLAYING TO WIN.

This chronic pain was a price I wasn’t willing to pay.

What about you? If the clues point to staying, then do the best where you are. But if the clues point to leaving, then remember—indecision is still a decision. Delaying or deferring is choosing to stay exactly where you are.

If you need someone to chat with, I’m here to help. Monday night, I’m doing a free live Q and A call. You’re welcome to join me.

If you already know your departure is inevitable then check out Dream Job Bootcamp ($300 off until Tuesday). Together over the next 10 weeks we’ll craft your Dream Jobber Plan. With a 100% satisfaction guarantee you have nothing to lose—except a little time packing up your office when you leave.

  • Joel Louis says:

    Kary, love the article but I’m a bit confused w/ the “5 Reasons to Stay” and “5 Reasons to Quit”. Specifically, the bullet items. It feels like some of the bullet items are swapped.

    For example: I would think “when you’re bored” would be a reason to quit and “when you’re embarrassing a new assignment” would be a reason to stay.

    I’m sure I’m missing something in your explanation. Can you clear this up for me.


  • Camilla says:

    Fantastic post! Love the ‘should I stay or should I go’ list. Keep inspiring.