So this is a blog that I have wanted to write but wasn't sure whether I should. But courage is my word for 2018 and in the famous words of Oprah Winfrey from her Golden Globe speech this week "What I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have". So here is me bravely speaking my truth. The reason I feel compelled to write about this is I hear so many people talking about how much they dislike the company they work for, they don't like their boss, they don't like the people they work with, they don't like the work they do or another number of reasons. There are is so much information out there now to help people find the perfect job, how to set up your own business but months and years roll by and they are still stuck working in a job they hate, with people they don't like and for a company they don't respect.
Also I had first hand experience of being that person, the one who felt unfulfilled, who wanted something different but was doing nothing to make it happen. Spending years wishing things were different, the company was going to change, my colleagues would get a personality transplant or I would finally just start enjoying my work.
So here is what I know for sure why you may not leave the job you hate.
1. You are full of self-doubt
This I find is the underlying truth in most cases where people don't leave their jobs. If you are anything like I was for the majority of my corporate career you may have feelings of Imposter Syndrome where you have chronic self doubt and you don't think you are good enough. You believe that if you move company then you might not hack it. That they would realise you aren't as good as they thought you were and you wouldn't last. One day you think you can do anything you put your mind to and the next you are telling yourself you could always go and get a job in a supermarket. You decide to take action and look at job adverts but you talk yourself out of being capable for the job. You struggle to recognise and write about your achievements. You think there is less chance of being found out if you stay where you are, so you stay.
Tip- You are way better than you think you are so commit to working on your mindset and changing those limiting beliefs. Having belief and confidence in yourself closes the gaps between where you are and where you want to be. By the way if you change company and you haven't worked on this - trust me it follows you to the new company!
2. Your need for security.
In fact “Public Dialogues”, a report published by What Works Centre for Well-being stated that, “The main value of work for many is financial security, stability and feeling safe". So if security is one of your main values then you will stay in a situation that you don't like to satisfy your need to feel secure, stable and safe even if it does make you miserable.
Tip - to overcome your need for security, ask yourself what actually do I need to feel secure each month. You may find that you only need a proportion of your salary to feel safe, so if you reduced your need for security what choices could that give you?
3. Fear of the unknown
Going to the same job week in and week out brings with it a sense of knowing what to expect. However, thinking of going to a new company or starting your own business can make you worry as you don't know what will happen. The thought of being unhappy in your job seems less frightening than not knowing what the future holds.
Tip - to overcome your fear of the unknown, ask yourself what is the worst thing that can happen. I don't like the new job, my business will fail, I will have to find another job and guess what? You found the job you are in, so you are very very likely to find another one too.
4. You think you are indispensable
Have you ever wondered how the hell they will cope if you went off sick or actually went on a proper holiday where you didn't answer your phone or your emails? You work tirelessly thinking if you don't that the company will fall apart, however if you have ever been off sick or on holiday you will actually realise that whilst there may have been issues the wheels still kept on turning and they managed without you.
Tip - think about a colleague that you have worked with in the past who has left. Notice what happened when they left, how long were they missed, did the business carry on without them? I bet it did.
5. You are a loyal person
Whilst you may not particularly like the work that you do, you may be fortunate to like some of your colleagues and you might feel guilty for thinking of leaving them. You know that they would struggle without you so you can't bring yourself to leave.
Tip - recognise that if there comes a time that the company needs to let you go, they will. Loyalty must start with yourself and being true to who you are and what you want.
6. You are full of hope
You can see the potential for the business and if only they would change their ethos, the management, the processes, the systems then the business could have so much potential. But the truth is this can take years and that is only if the senior management recognise there is an issue and they actually want to make positive change.
Tip - ask yourself when was the last time I would really proud of a decision that the company took to make changes? If you can't think of one then ask yourself where is that hope in that company getting you?
7. You think you are too old
You may think that you are too old to change company or even career so you think it is better to just plod on where you are. However unless you are approaching retirement then you have decades left at work and therefore it is never too late to change or start a new career.
Tip - check out people who started businesses in their 40's, 50's and 60's such as Mel Robbins, Jen Sincere and founders of KFC and McDonalds.
8. You think you are too qualified to start again
You have spent all of this time, energy and money getting qualified so to think of changing career seems crazy. You are now earning a great salary so to think of retraining and starting again seems unrealistic. You may struggle to see how you can replace your salary and keep the lifestyle that you have become accustomed to.
Tip - make a note of all the skills, knowledge and experience that you take with you into your new chosen career. Yes you may need to retrain but you are not starting from scratch and have so many life skills to take with you.
9. You are resistant to change
Whilst the thought of a new job or a career change appeals to you, you really don't like change and whilst the initial motivation is there, as soon as you start to think about the next steps, you talk yourself out of it and decide that your job isn't that bad after all.
So if you were being honest with yourself, which of the above resonates with you? Here is what I know for sure - staying in a position that you don't like chips away at your spirit and your confidence. You may need to work on what is holding you back and keeping you stuck but it if you do it will help you leave and you will move forward with enthusiasm and determination. You deserve to work in a job that lights you up, to work with colleagues or clients that make you feel good, to be proud to work with a company that alligns with your own personal values.
The question is will you?
Each month I offer a number of free coaching calls to help people identify how they are getting in their own way, what they want instead and to help them to come up with the first steps to big change. If you would like to book a free call simply email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to request a call.