Love Your Work or Leave


Love your work, or leave? Maybe. Or maybe not. Job satisfaction is important, but you also can’t count on graduating from college and immediately becoming an astronaut. There’s a balance to be found, and sometimes finding it isn’t super fun. Yes, you ought to choose a career that you feel great about. But do you need to pay your dues before you get your dream job? Usually, yeah. You’ve got to work hard to make your dreams come true, and that often means working some jobs you’re less-than-passionate about to pay the bills. But how do you know if it’s time to call it quits? Here are some questions to ask yourself.

Do you go home crying every night?

If you fantasize about leaving your job forever the moment you drive away from work, it may be a sign that you need to pack up your things and go. Paying your dues doesn’t have to mean sending yourself on a downward spiral into depression. If your job truly leaves you feeling defeated more often than not, take a step back and evaluate why you keep clocking in. Is it only for the paycheck? It’s totally possible to find another less than thrilling job that doesn’t make you feel like garbage on the regular.

Is your boss a horrible snot-goblin?

Some bosses are terrible managers. Is this a career deal-breaker? Not always. It’s possible to do a great job under an iffy manager. But some bosses are truly terrible people who simply do not have their employees best interest in mind. If this is the case, you are better off looking for employment elsewhere. Having a crappy boss happens to everyone at some point, but you never deserve to be treated with cruelty and disrespect.

Are you morally opposed to any part of your job?

Bottom line: you’re only as good as your character. If your job requires you to do anything that you don’t feel good about in your gut, don’t be afraid to walk away.

Better be poor and keep your integrity than to be rich and lose your self-respect.

Why don’t you love your work?

Try to boil it down to the “why.” Why don’t you love your current job?

  • Is it because you’re bored?
  • Do you feel like you aren’t being challenged?
  • Do you feel underpaid and underappreciated?
  • Are you being lazy?

If you can articulate why you don’t love your job, you will become equipped to make things better. Perhaps you can change your responsibilities or your role. Ask your boss for more challenging assignments. Ask to try something new. And if all else fails, you will start to know exactly what you’re looking for in your future dream job.