We’ve all felt the urge to take a sneaky five-minute nap at our computer, but if nodding off at your work computer is a daily occurrence, however, if could be a sign that it’s time to move on.
Recognise the signs
According to research carried out by Learndirect, job dissatisfaction is a common problem with a whopping 31% of UK workers itching for a new start.
“Feeling bored, fed-up and frustrated, not feeling stretched or not fulfilling your potential are all good indicators that you’ve reached a dead-end in your job,” says career coach Marianne Craig from coachlifeandcareer.com. “A lot of people come to life coaching feeling unfulfilled. It’s almost like you know deep down that you can contribute more and you’re not being stretched.”
And an unhappy worker doesn’t make for a productive one: 38% of unhappy workers waste time at work chatting to friends, surfing the net and checking out new job opportunities. Companies are losing an estimated £40 million a day to workers who spend time daydreaming of a new job.
Look after your health
Feeling dissatisfied with your job can also have a detrimental effect on your physical and mental well-being.
A study carried out by Lancaster University and Manchester Business School found that unhappy workers are more likely to suffer from “emotional burnout, reduced self-esteem and anxiety and depression”.
“It is stressful,” agrees Marianne, “and we all have a breaking point. Some people get headaches, don’t sleep well, or develop eczema. People start drinking more, smoking more – indulging in escapist behaviour. It’s important to talk about it.”
It can hit you in the pocket too. Learndirect discovered that 10% of those unhappy in their jobs spend more to compensate for a lack of job satisfaction. Post-work shopping trips to indulge in pick-me-up treats are fun but a short-term solution to a bigger problem.
Time to move on
If any (or all) of the above apply to you, it’s definitely time to start thinking positive and looking for the best way to move on. “I would say, ‘What would you rather be doing?’.” suggests Marianne. “Take a really hard look at your situation. It’s good to do that time to time anyway. Ask those big questions about meaning and purpose. Does it matter to me? What is the reason I go out to work? Would I be doing this if I won the Lottery?”
If you’ve got itchy feet, what’s the first step? Marianne: “Work with a career coach (I would say that!), talk to friends, do a personality profile online. Spend time thinking about your skills and strengths. Are you using those in the best way?”
“It seems people know what they want in a job,” considers Learndirect’s Gareth Dent, reflecting on the results of the report, “getting on with colleagues, doing something worthwhile and being challenged top the wish list – which is really positive.”
You can also visit our job profiles to research new job roles and find out how learning new skills could help you find a job you’ll love.
To sum up, if you suspect it’s time you changed your job, keep the following in mind…
You know you’ve fallen out of love with your job when:
The consequences worth considering are:
- Anxiety, stress and even depression
- Reliance on escapist activities like drinking too much
- Post-work spending sprees
Take control by:
- Being honest with yourself
- Talking to a career coach or discussing your options with friends
- Taking a personality profile and listing out your skills and strengths