Remember the good old days when you first started your job?
It was exciting right? You were just happy to end the dredge of filling out applications and interviewing non-stop. You could finally relax a little and start focusing on your work.
Now 6, 12, 20 months have passed…and the honeymoon is over. You’re immersed in the job and can now see it for what it is, free from the rose colored glasses you began with. Maybe the culture is stone cold and you don’t really feel like you fit in or maybe some of the promises you were told before you started the job, have now been forgotten.
Whatever the case, you don’t want to crawl back to the job search market…unless you are certain this job isn’t going to work out.
So what are the signs to look out for?
1. Your Potential is Being Wasted
About 17% of the U.S. population is classified as underemployed. I can imagine that number only grows if you look world wide.
The recession unfortunately caused many qualified workers to take jobs below their potential in order to make ends meet. If this was a temporary set back, it wouldn’t be such a big deal. But for many of you, the job you initially took as a bootstrap, is now looking like your new future. Just look at this poor girl’s story on Reddit.
2. The Industry is Dying
My good friend and co worker Michelle used to work in the propane industry. Several years back, she started wondering how much longer a career in this field could go on…so she started looking into a job at Qualcomm (just a startup back then). Soon after, she landed the job and got into a hot career all because she recognized a dying industry and left before it was too late.
Like the propane field in Michelle’s story, today we have equivalent industry’s to worry about (newspapers and electronic stores for example.) Sometimes it’s hard to leave an industry you love, but do you go down with the ship or explore what’s on the horizon?
3. You Feel Like a Different Person at Work
Many times a job can put you in uncomfortable positions. When I was in sales, it took incredible energy to be the aggressive, “don’t take no for an answer” kind of person my boss wanted. At home I was always the easy going guy, looking to make things easier for everyone else.
Well that “energy” you spend doing your work in a way that falls outside your natural tendencies leads to stress, burnout, and unhappiness. Sure, everyone will have to do some things outside their comfort zone, but doing this on a daily basis is a recipe for disaster.
4. You Are Taking More Sick Days
Research has shown that unhappy employees take an average of 15 more sick days a year than happy employees.
If you find yourself using up more sick days, you might wonder if the job is the cause.
5. You Stopped Learning
With globalization and a shifting economy, learning is not a commodity to be taken lightly. If you’ve stopped learning new skills in your job, you’re limiting how competitive you can be in the job market.
6. The Only Difference Between Last Year’s Resume and This Year’s is the Time on the Job
Every year you should think of what milestones occurred in the last 12 months that you can add to your resume.
If you are drawing blanks on what you accomplished last year, it might be time to move on.
7. The Only Reward is the Money
As a career coach, the first thing I ask the readers on my site is what their biggest career challenge is. We have hundreds of subscribers and not once have we heard that money was the challenge.
In fact, our most engaged readers often share that they in fact get paid well but feel trapped, stressed out, or just lack the motivation they used to have for their job.
Farnoosh on an earlier article at Lifehack shares the same feelings, “Let’s face it: the money is nice and there is nothing wrong with loving the money. But if you only do it for the money, then you are in the wrong job.”
Any of these warning signs resonating with you? If so share in the comments below.Featured photo credit: sad man via Shutterstock