It’s when you start your first job that you realize how much your work-life balance affects your levels of happiness. Those who have had the chance to land a good career know what a positive impact that has. And those who, on the other hand, have not been so lucky, know how much the opposite can hinder you.
Over the years, studies have shown an indisputable link between careers and happiness, going so far as comparing different career paths to different levels of satisfaction. All work has its challenges and hard days, but when it becomes a constant feeling of unfulfillment, it’s time to evaluate. Trying to decide if it’s time to make a career change? Look for these signs.
Are you dreading work every morning, lacking the energy to set on your everyday missions? Are your emotions a rollercoaster? Is your dream uneasy? Do you explode easily when confronted with obstacles?
You’re probably dealing with unusual levels of stress, which is a symptom of extreme discomfort. Stress is a very dangerous thing that can be ignored as “normal” when it shouldn’t be. Being stressed is not a characteristic of your personality; it’s a sign from your body to step back from what you’re doing. Stress can be deeply dangerous to your mental and physical help, and you’re not going to resist it for long.
Try to pinpoint what is it in your work life that is bringing you stress, and why. Think of ways to change the setup that is stressing you so much, and ask yourself if you’re willing to do it. Certain tasks are naturally stress-triggering for certain people. If what you’re doing falls under that category for you, it might be a good idea to move on to something else.
You’re not Serving Your Purpose
Maybe when you started at your job, it was what you wanted, and you felt proud of what you did and where you did it. But things have changed, taken a detour from where they were going, or maybe you did. The world evolves, and so do you.
Companies make decisions every day that, little by little, guide them toward the future. If these decisions do not align with your vision for the future, it might be time to reevaluate what you’re doing. If you value innovation and advancement, move into one of the careers of the future. If you put human interaction above all else, go for something that highlights that.
Values are a crucial element in our quest for fulfillment. If there is an unbreachable gap between what you’re doing, and what you think is important, you will never reach contentment in what you do. In this contrast, you will find your answers.
You’re Good, But not Interested
The fact that you’re good at something does not mean that you’re interested in it, or like it. And, truth is, true passion is the driving force behind great success, so there’s no reason to stay stuck in a career you don’t like.
Do some soul searching to find out what you’re interested in. Be honest enough to explore possibilities you didn’t ever have before. Think of how you can turn them into a new career for yourself.
Your focus should be on aligning your interests to your work life. You can start by trying out things in the realm of your interest, maybe with an online course or a small internship. These are good ways to narrow down what it is that you want to do, in terms of work, with your interests.
Above all, value your longtime happiness over momentary comfort. You don’t have to settle for something because it comes easy. If you’re thinking of changing careers for something more interesting to you, go for it while you have the impulse.
There comes a time when we need to accept that you’ve outgrown a position, a career, a job. When this happens, resisting change will only bring you unhappiness and resentment. Take the skills you learned in your previous position, and be open to new challenges. Changing careers can turn out to be the best decision of your life.