There won’t always be a single watershed moment (like getting passed over for a promotion or being asked to take a pay cut) signaling it’s time to leave your current company. To avoid career stagnation, complacency, or deteriorating health, keep an eye out for these hints that you should consider moving on.
1. YOU DREAD GOING INTO WORK.
This may seem obvious, but it’s an important one. If your Sunday Sads start on Saturday or you feel the Monday morning blues every day of the week, something isn’t right. While work will always be work, it shouldn’t be torture. Waking up with a bad feeling in the pit of your stomach every morning is a clear indication that your current job is no longer a good fit.
2. YOU’RE ALWAYS STRESSED.
It’s normal for workloads to ebb and flow, causing periods of long hours at the office, sleepless nights, and weekends used to “catch up” on your projects. But if this is the norm, something may be amiss. Stress has officially been declared a hazard of the workplace, and some reports estimate that 75 to 90 percent of all doctor’s visits annually are related to stress-related complaints. Stress can manifest itself physically (via headaches, backaches, or digestive issues, to name a few) as well as mentally (feelings of anxiety, depression, or helplessness), and over time can contribute to such serious health problems as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and more.
3. YOU’RE ALWAYS BORED.
Do you feel like you’re just coasting? Have you fallen into a comfortable routine, to the point where you can mindlessly check boxes off your to-do list each day? If you no longer feel challenged and excited by your work, you’ve got to go. Boredom can also lead to carelessness, and your quality of work can suffer as a result (which, in some industries, could have dangerous consequences).
4. THERE’S NO ROOM FOR GROWTH.
A reason you might feel yourself stagnating is that there are no opportunities for upward mobility. According to a recent survey, 49 percent of young adults in the workforce believe that they’re being overlooked for potential leadership opportunities and 63 percent believe their leadership skills are not being fully developed. If you share these feelings—and your current employer isn’t interested in making changes—then (you guessed it), it’s time to move on.
5. YOU’RE NOT MAKING ENOUGH MONEY.
If your responsibilities have increased while your salary and title have stayed the same, a talk with your employer about a raise and promotion is in order—you should be compensated appropriately for the job you’re doing. But if those negotiations prove less than fruitful, you’ll need to consider Plan B.
Sometimes, the only way to make a large jump in salary is by changing employers. If you’re making below market rate or below your peers at the same company (things you can find out through a salary comparison website or a candid chat with a trusted colleague, if your company policy allows such conversations), you may need to jump ship—or at least land a new offer—in order to get ahead.
6. THE TOXIC ENVIRONMENT IS GETTING YOU DOWN.
Constantly complaining about your boss, your coworkers, or your position can put a major strain on your relationships. Within the office, grumblings of dissatisfaction can spread like wildfire, bringing down group morale and productivity. And when your workplace negativity starts to trickle into your non-working hours, you’ve got a problem—it’s all too easy to take your frustration with your manager out on your family or friends. Negativity can affect you physically as well: Similar to stress, negative emotions have been proven to suppress the immune system.
7. YOUR COMPANY IS FAILING.
Another seeming no-brainer, but it’s an all-too-common scenario: Employees miss the warning signs and end up going down with the ship when their company sinks. If layoffs seem imminent (or have already begun), your company is tightening its belt, or your employer is making news for all the wrong reasons, the writing may be on the wall. Line up your next job before the one you currently have suddenly disappears.