You may FEEL ready to quit your job because your boss is an asshole, you’re exhausted, or you know you deserve so much better, but you’re not ACTUALLY ready until you’ve taken these 3 action steps.

We are making a distinction between WANTING to quit and being READY to quit.

Here are the most common reasons you may WANT/NEED to quit:

  1. Emotional trigger. Signs: burned out, deeply bored, feel bad while you’re there, dread going, there may be toxic or abusive behavior at work. Your mental health is suffering. The wild animal in you KNOWS you need to go.
  2. Physical trigger. Signs: Exhaustion, digestive problems, fatigue, brain fog, lack of movement, the heightened nervous system making it hard to “turn off” and rest, insomnia. In some way, it’s costing you your health.
  3. Culture/values clash. Signs: You have to betray your own values in order to fit in or do the work. You experience micro-aggressions; the team devalues the butt of jokes and your contributions. The touted values on the website and brochures are not practiced or protected. It is clear that you don’t belong.
  4. Crisis of meaning. Signs: Just doesn’t matter enough at the end of the day. Feel pointless and like a waste of your time and potential. If you died tomorrow, you would not be leaving behind the contribution or legacy that you’d be proud of.
  5. Hit a growth dead end. Signs: No path for growth. No learning new things, no professional development, not wanting the boss’s job, no income growth potential. You’re just stuck where you are.

You may be experiencing one or multiple of those things. Those are indicator lights that you need to quit, but they don’t make you READY to quit.

Let’s talk about those 3 things you need in order to be READY to quit.

Sign 1: You know what’s next.

When your job is making you miserable, you want to get out. But if you don’t know what you want from your career and what needs to change and how YOU might need to change, it’s extremely likely that you’ll end up in another job that’s a bad fit.

When you quit, you don’t want to just run from something, you want to move toward something instead of repeating old patterns.

I DO NOT recommend taking time off to figure it out your new career. Time doesn’t help if you don’t have an effective strategy. Journaling, informational interviews, volunteering, taking classes, assessments, and travel – these are not career choice strategies. You will probably have a nice time and learn about yourself but that doesn’t help you choose a career.

Sign 2: You have a transition plan.

You’ll want to quit with integrity, whatever that means to you.

Quit your job with a practical plan in place so you can safely move from A to B. Don’t quit your job to leave a stressful situation only to enter a new stressful situation where you’re out of work and have to scramble to piece things together.

Sign 3: You feel confident about quitting.

It does not feel that good to quit when you feel defeated, but it feels amazing to quit when you know what you have to offer and are eager to share that with an employer or client who will value you. Go out on top. Go out peacefully, energized, and proud of you and your choice.

When you’re emotionally ready to quit, make sure you get the practical steps in place so you can be truly ready to quit.

Laura Simms is an expert in meaningful work who challenges conventional wisdom by asking people to ditch their passions and start with purpose.

If you have too many passions, zero passions, or can't seem to combine your passions, try her purpose-first approach to find a career you love.  


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