7 Signs It’s Time to Get a New Job (Even if Your Current One’s Not Terrible)

Gut-wrenching. That’s the best way to describe a voluntary decision to leave a perfectly good job to pursue something new. I’ve had to go through the painful process of changing jobs many times, and it’s not easy—but getting to the point of conviction that it’s the right thing to do isn’t impossible, either.

It’s helpful to know the telltale signs that it’s time to move on to new horizons. I’m going to share with you seven of the most important ones. You might face just one, or perhaps all of them. Either way, if you’re nodding your head in agreement as you read this, you know the jig is up and it’s time to plan your exit.

1. You’re Constantly Bored

At first, it’s nice to have some mental downtime. Prolonged, however, it’s a recipe for disaster.

If you’re often bored, you aren’t being challenged and learning a whole lot. If you aren’t learning, you aren’t growing. If you aren’t growing, you’re atrophying, and your skills are less and less useful in an increasingly competitive market.

Boredom is unavoidable, but it’s critical that it’s not a long-term thing. If you aren’t experiencing a sense of vigor and learning, and you can’t volunteer for new projects that will help you stretch and get out of your comfort zone, it’s time for a change.

2. You’re Embarrassed About Your Work

Do you believe in the products your company produces? Are you proud to tell your friends and family what you do and where you work?

I believe that we all should be on a mission to build a career we can be proud of. One way to do this is to change your mindset regarding your work. Ask yourself, “Who does my company serve? How do my customers benefit from our products and services? How are our customers lives better as a result of me doing what I do?”

If you answer these questions and still can’t find any deeper meaning or purpose in your work, that’s a pretty big sign.

3. You Wouldn’t Hire Yourself for Your Job

Don’t let anyone fool you: No one is fully qualified for their job. There’s always a learning curve, even for the most highly skilled person. That said, if you were your boss, would you hire yourself to do your job? If not, why?

Whatever your answer is to this question will reveal a few things. First, it will reveal a few possible gaps in skills or attitudes that you should address to be successful in your job. Second, it will serve as an indicator for your desire to do what it takes to be a “good hire” for your job. Sometimes, the missing pieces we need to be successful are not the things we’re able or willing to work on. If this is the case for you, your energy will be better spent in a job where you want to invest the time and energy in your personal and career development.

4. You’re There for the Money

If you won the lottery, would you still be doing the type of work you’re doing today?

When I pose this question, I’m not saying you need to work the same number of hours. Most people would obviously work less!

Instead, think about if you would still be doing the same style or type of work you’re doing now. If the answer is an enthusiastic “yes!”—you know you’re on the right career track. Otherwise, you may need to do some soul-searching to find out what your longer-term career path should be.

5. You Wouldn’t Choose Your Job Again

We choose a major when we go to college, get a job, and sometimes never leave that career track for years and years. The choices we make when we’re in our teens do not and should not represent what we do for the rest of our lives. This fact hit home for me when I decided to leave a job and company I loved to travel and start my business. It wasn’t that my job was bad, it was that my values changed as I grew older and I needed to build a new career in line with those values.

If you had to choose your job right now, would you pick the same field you’re in today? Would you choose the same company? Would you choose the same specific job?

If you wouldn’t opt-in to your current matter right now, it’s worth asking yourself “Why?”