Five signs you’re in the wrong job

We’ve all been there.  That crushing feeling when you sit down at your desk for yet another week’s work and wonder why you’re here.  But when does it go beyond the universally felt Monday morning blues and become something much more serious?  In other words, how can you tell when you’re in the wrong job?

Here are just five signs which should tell you it’s time to start job hunting right away…


You dread going into work in the morning



We’re not just talking Monday morning reluctance here, but getting that same sinking feeling every day of the working week.  We all start a new job with boundless optimism and a fuzzy feeling that we’ve found ‘the one’, and it’s only natural that the honeymoon period eventually wears off and you start to see the negatives.

Of course there will be good and bad days in any job, but if the bad days significantly outweigh the good ones then it’s almost certainly time to call it quits.  When you can no longer see any positives whatsoever in going in to work, you’re definitely in the wrong job.


Something doesn’t feel right



Maybe you can’t quite put your finger on it, but if something in this role just doesn’t sit comfortably with you then you could be in the wrong job.  Gut feeling can be an incredibly powerful thing even when you can’t pinpoint exactly what is making you unhappy.

It may be that you’ve been passed over for promotion one too many times to see it as a possibility.  It could be that the job isn’t working your little grey cells.  It may even be that there’s a colleague who makes you uncomfortable.  Whatever the reason – known or unknown – if something doesn’t feel right then it’s time to walk.

Struggling in a new job

You aren’t growing or developing



Nobody likes to feel stuck in a career rut.  If the job is no longer stretching you or pushing your professional development, then it might be time to look for something which will.  Some companies are great at offering additional training and nurturing their talent, while others couldn’t give two hoots if you’re developing and growing throughout your career.

If the work is mundane, repetitive and not adding value to your CV, then now might be a good time to start looking around.  A job which doesn’t help your career progression in any way, shape or form is a complete waste of time, so don’t waste any more.


You aren’t using your strengths



Regardless of how many qualifications you might have, we all of us have a unique skillset which we’d like to flex during the working day.  If the job isn’t allowing you to play to your strengths and put your skills to good use, then it’s probably not going to make you happy in the long-run.

Straitened economic times have meant that many people are being forced into roles which under-utilise their skills or don’t use them at all.  Being trapped in a position which doesn’t let you use your education and talents is miserable, but somewhere out there will be a job which will challenge and engage you.

not using strengths

You can’t stand the people



Sometimes it’s not the job itself which is the issue, but your colleagues.  A job is as much about the people as the work, and if they’re difficult for you to get on with then that can be justification enough for moving on.  The office culture and your company’s ethos can all play a part, as can the management style and the layers of rules and bureaucracy.

Whether you’re being made to feel like an outsider by workmates or they just have annoying habits which grate on your nerves, if you really can’t stand their company then pack it in.  You have to accept that there will be one or two irritating colleagues wherever you work, but if you’re currently surrounded by them then start job hunting!

Moving on can be a very difficult decision to make, no matter how unhappy you might be.  While you may have a bird in the hand, you have to really ask yourself how long you can stand being in your present role and consider what else might be out there.  Think things through carefully and examine your long-term happiness and career goals before you make your move.

Here’s our blog on when and why it’s OK to quit your job 

By Lizzie Exton