Jobs are a little bit like relationships: You have natural chemistry with some, while others take time to feel "right." Many get dull after a few years, and while they might be super into you, you're not always into them.
As with a relationship, it can be hard to know if you're going through a rough patch with your current job or if it's time to break up and move on. Check out this "Should I Quit My Job?" checklist to find clarity once and for all:
❏ You Find Yourself Dreaming of Other Jobs
When you think of your future, you see yourself not simply in a more advanced position, but at a totally different company or in a completely different role. It could be that you see yourself wearing jeans instead of a suit or in a client-facing role rather than behind the scenes. If the path you imagine isn't in line with your current job, check off the box.
❏ You Struggle to Stay Motivated at Work
Everyone goes through stale periods at work. However, your work life feels that way more often than not, and you struggle every day to stay motivated in your work. You've even tried to switch up your schedule and take on new projects, but your level of excitement is unchanged. If this sounds like you, check the box.
❏ Your Opinion of the Company Has Changed for the Worse
Many times, friendships with coworkers and general feelings of positivity toward the company keep employees around longer. You've probably heard friends say something like, "The job is fine, but I love the company." That's actually a good position to be in, since most companies are happy to hire for new positions from within.
However, if you no longer like your job and have a distaste for the company, that probably means there is no salvaging your professional life there. Do you feel negatively toward your company? If so, check the box.
❏ Other People Have Noticed Your Efforts Are Slipping
Unfortunately, when you don't like your job, it's usually pretty obvious to others. Even more unfortunately, that includes management. Your manager has noticed your productivity diminishing and has even mentioned it to you once or twice. You have tried hard to turn things around, but it's just not happening, and now you feel you run the risk of losing your job. Are you feeling this kind of pressure? Check the box.
❏ Your Lack of Drive at Work Has Carried Over Into Your Personal Life
Not only are you often unmotivated at work, but now you find yourself unmotivated in your personal life as well. It's not unusual for feelings in the professional part of your life to seep into other parts. If those feelings are negative and are having a major affect on your life, check the box.
How did you do? If you checked one or two of these boxes, it might not be time to make a change quite yet. However, if you checked the majority of the boxes, it's probably time to consider a new job.
James Hu is the founder and CEO of Jobscan.