How to Handle Falling out of Love with Your Job
Just like relationships change and evolve over time, your feelings about your job will change over time and you will experience career highs and career lows. The feeling of excitement that you got when you first started your job will eventually wear off and you may realize that your once perfect job has its own set of shortcomings. As a professional, it is important that you don’t give up on your job the moment that the honeymoon period is over; instead, try your best to bring back that lovin’ feelin’ before deciding to cut ties and move on to other career opportunities.
Bring Back That Lovin’ Feelin’
If you aren’t feeling enamored with your job, don’t get discouraged and move on immediately. Instead, try to bring back that lovin’ feelin’ by utilizing the following ideas:
- Learn something new: Let’s face it, completing the same tasks, in the same way, day after day isn’t going to keep the love alive. To avoid boredom and stay interested in your work, try learning something new that can be applied to your position. Take a class, attend a training seminar, go outside of your comfort zone to learn something new!
- Seek more responsibility: Jobs often start to feel boring and stagnant once you have mastered your routine. Switch it up by challenging yourself and seeking more responsibility. A quick glance around the office may be all that you need to do, but if you are struggling to find more responsibilities, sit down and meet with your employer to discuss where they see opportunities for you.
- Connect with your team: Part of job satisfaction is having meaningful connections with the people you work with. If you are feeling out of touch with your job, try connecting with your team. Initiate a team outing, or start having lunch with your coworkers instead of at your desk. The more you like the people you work with, the less work will feel like a chore.
- Reflect on what made you fall in love: Sit down, reflect and make a mental (or physical) list of why you fell in love with your job to begin with. What was it that attracted you to the position? What projects have you worked on that you were passionate about? Consider that there are more of these opportunities if you stay with the company moving forward.
Know When It’s Time to Break up
Despite your best efforts to make it work, it is important to recognize when the love is truly gone. Here are some examples of when moving on may be the best decision:
- Irreconcilable differences: Once the excitement of a new job has died down, you may start to notice that your goals or values don’t align with those of the company you work for. When it comes to big picture differences, you will have to be the one to change or make the choice to move on in your career.
- You don’t see a future: If you feel like you have reached your full potential in your current role and have discussed moving up in the company with your employer only to find that there are no advancement opportunities, it may be time to look for employment elsewhere.
- Lack of interest: Disinterest in work leads to poor productivity, and is a disservice to both you and the company you work for. If you lack interest in projects, clients, and team members despite the effort that you put into trying new things, taking on more responsibilities and getting to know your coworkers, it is time for a career move.
- The bad outweighs the good: No matter how hard you try, there will be times that the parts of a job that you dislike overpower the areas of your job that you love. Make a pro/con list to determine if the positive areas of your current position are enough to keep you with the company.
While your feelings about your job will ebb and flow over time, don’t give up on your job the moment the honeymoon phase is over. Allow yourself the time to find ways to get excited about work again before accepting that sometimes the love is gone and it’s time to move on.