1. You’re reading this – Sure, maybe you’re just curious what I wrote, but more likely, you have a little voice in the back of your head that’s questioning your current situation. Perhaps you’re hoping this list validates what you’re thinking. Perhaps you’re looking for approval to leave. If you had a permission slip to do anything, what would you do then?
2. You regularly hit the snooze button – You want to delay the day. You’re unexcited about how you spend most of your waking hours. You can’t believe you have to deal with yet another day of this crap. If getting out of bed is hard ALL the time (even for exciting things), then it’s time to look into talking to someone like a therapist. But if you have no problem getting out of bed to do fun and exciting things, but work isn’t one of them, it might be time to start exploring other opportunities.
3. You get the Sunday Scaries – You spend Sunday evenings mourning the weekend and dreading Monday. You find yourself working all weekend, resenting that now you have to keep doing it again for the next …5…days. You feel the anxiety start to build and spend the latter half of your weekend being worried rather than being present.
4. You’re counting down the days to retirement – I just spoke with someone the other day who said “I don’t want to be counting down the days to retirement”. She so beautifully captured a feeling so many have, which is wishing the days away. The average person spends 1/3 of their lives working – that’s about 90,000 hours! Do you want to live your life wishing that time away? I don’t.
5. You know you’re meant for more – This one is trickier because things aren’t terrible. You’re making it work. It’s good enough. You make decent money. But you have a nagging feeling that your days could probably be filled with more joy, purpose and meaning. You use “#blessed” as your reason to stay put because others have it worse. And yet, you’re left feeling slightly empty.
6. You’re not learning – You’ve been doing the same thing, the same way, in the same place. We are meant to evolve. We are meant to grow. Like a plant, we need to be nurtured and fed in order to bloom. How is your current job feeding your growth or enriching you? (And do not confuse being challenged with being tortured – yes, new things are hard and uncomfortable. They should not, however, make you feel bad about yourself or your contributions). Boredom doesn’t lead to blossoms.
7. You’re not doing something you love – You have a dream job in your mind and it’s not what you’re doing. You feel a pang of envy when you see someone else doing something that makes your heart sing. But you have limiting beliefs that it can’t happen for you. Maybe it can’t, but you know there may be something adjacent that would give you the same feeling. You allow the bullshit excuses to get in the way of exploring it (time, money, etc.).
8. Something else has piqued your interest – I get it. There are realities to life that we have to contend with and so backpacking around Europe for 6 months or living in an Ashram for a year isn’t realistic when you have a family and bills to pay (or is it?!). You have time in front of you. A lot of it. And you’re spending some of it thinking about something else. We frequently tend to employ black/white thinking. It’s either this or that. It’s either 100% or nothing. How can you dip your toe in? Maybe you’re not ready to walk away from your job. How might you still do your day-to-day and test the waters of the other thing?
9. It’s just not healthy – You’re not paid fairly. You hate your job. You do not have a healthy work/life blend. You’re not treated respectfully. You’re not receiving the same treatment as others. You’re discriminated against in some way. Time to find a new job. Hard stop. As author Laurie Buchanan says, “Whatever you’re not changing, you’re choosing.” So you can continue forward with hating your job or being mistreated, or you can take back the steering wheel of your own life and choose a different road.
10. You’ve lost yourself – You don’t even recognize the person in the mirror because it’s someone so far removed from who you really are. You wear a poker face every day. You feel like Jekyll and Hyde in your work and personal life. You have to “put it on” to get through the day, exhausted by the time you come home (hello, leftovers!). No wonder you’re exhausted! Being an actor every day is hard work. Being yourself is effortless.
I help my clients navigate the pressures of their careers and their families so they can accomplish more, have more free time and achieve more success, with less stress. Your most vibrant personal and professional life is waiting for you.