Six Signs It Is Time to Switch Careers

by | Jan 12, 2023

Have you noticed that your job or career is no longer fulfilling or satisfying? If so, it may be time to consider a career change. While this can be intimidating and frustrating, it can also be an opportunity to discover your passions, values, and areas of opportunity. A report from LinkedIn has found that 61% of U.S. workers are considering leaving their jobs in 2023. Is it frustrating? Daunting? Yes, it can be. For some, it can feel like taking a step back in their professional life, but it does not have to be.

Think of it this way, every stage of your career opens the way to a more fulfilling life. Each step gives you a new opportunity to understand who you are, your goals, your main interests, the people you want to surround yourself with, your values, and your areas of opportunity (everyone has them).  You are not alone. The average monthly job switching rate for workers was 2.5%, or around 4 million individuals, from January to March 2022. This rate implies an annual turnover of 30%, equating to roughly 50 million workers, assuming no worker changes jobs more than once per year. This rate is higher than the previous year, where the average rate of job switching was 2.3% per month.  The fact that you are reading this article is one of the first signs that you are not comfortable with your job. But, you should pay close attention to hints, such as the ones we describe.  

1- You have lost motivation to go to work. 

If you hit the snooze button repeatedly or dread going to work, it may be a sign that you are no longer engaged or fulfilled. All of us have had days where we just hit the snooze button repeatedly, but if you have reached a point in your life where this is happening daily, perhaps it is time to snooze your daily routine and spend some time thinking about why this is happening. There are as many reasons as people, to name a few, that might help you: maybe the project you are working on is not challenging enough, perhaps you are not comfortable with your team, or maybe your boss and you are not communicating well.  

2- You Don’t Like Your Daily Work 

If you find your daily tasks tedious or unfulfilling, it may be time to consider a career that aligns more with your interests and passions. Not enjoying the daily bulk of activities and finding them daunting are clear signs you need to switch careers. This can happen for several reasons: not being appreciated, facing a complete disconnection between what you thought you were going to do and what you are doing, feeling like you are not making an impact, doing tasks that are not challenging enough, etc. Take some time to analyze this situation, what you do not like, and what it takes to fix it. 

3- You Are Only Staying In Your Job For The Money 

If you find yourself going to work just for the paycheck and not because you enjoy what you do, it may be time to pursue a career that brings more meaning and fulfillment. When you find yourself going to work just for the pay, my friend, you have a problem. Just sitting there watching the seconds go by, waiting for the clock to hit 5:00 pm to close your laptop and get out of there, counting the days for the weekend to arrive. All of these are clear signs that you need something else. Your body and mind are aching for more. Be careful; if this situation continues for a long time, you can reach a point where your salary will not be enough to make you get out of bed and ready to work.  

4- You spend hours researching other jobs

If you spend a lot of time during or outside of work researching and considering other career options, it may be a sign that you are ready for a change. Suddenly you find yourself “killing” those long hours of work by researching other jobs, what it takes to do them, thinking about how and why you chose your current career, and what would have happened if you had studied something different. You spend hours reading job offers on LinkedIn and Glassdoor and researching successful people and their professional backgrounds: how did they get to where they are now?  

5- Your Job Is Affecting Your Personal Life 

 If your job is causing stress, exhaustion, or strain on your relationships, it may be time to reassess whether it is the right fit for you. Permanent stress affects our lives in ways we do not even imagine: we become bitter and unhappy, we have physical symptoms, we lose sleep, and we are exhausted. The worst part of this is that all these symptoms do not stay at work; they go home with us, the trouble our relationships with family, partners, and even our friends. Is it worth it? Do you want to constantly battle with your spouse or kids because you are frustrated at work?  

6- You have lost the passion that led you to your current career

If you no longer feel motivated or inspired by your work, it may be time to revisit your career goals and consider others. Think of the reasons that made you choose that career, that job, that organization. Why and how did you get there? Why are you unhappy/frustrated right now? Were you expecting to do something different? Have you been doing the same year after year?   If you have identified any of these signs, it’s important to take some time to reflect on what you want out of your career and what steps you can take to make a change. This may involve seeking support from friends, family, or professionals, updating your resume and networking or taking additional training or education. Don’t be afraid to step back in your professional life if it means moving towards a more fulfilling and meaningful career. Once you have identified the signs that indicate it is time to switch careers, you need to start planning your next moves. Ask yourself the following questions:  

  • Where do you want to go? 
  • What does it take to get there? 
  • What skills do you need to work on to be successful there?
  • Who can guide you through this process?
  • Where and how can you learn the must-have hard skills for this?
  • How long will it take me to get there? 

Once you have answered them, start creating your plan to switch careers. Do not let fear and uncertainty keep you from reaching your goals. It is never too late to start; you need the right mindset, disposition, and firm conviction to get to a place where you will be valued and rewarded with hard work and dedication.