Before You Quit Your Job, Ask Yourself These Questions

Before You Quit Your Job, Ask Yourself These Questions
Photo: GaudiLab, Shutterstock

For a number of reasons, living during a global pandemic for nearly two years has caused a lot of people to rethink their life choices — including their current job. These aren’t all necessarily people looking for a career change, or to follow whatever they see as their “true calling.” It also includes those who now realise they have additional (realistic) job options out there, and that making a switch could improve their quality of life. Before putting in your notice, ask yourself these questions to help assess your current job situation.

Am I being compensated fairly for my work?

New entrants to the white collar workforce (women in particular) are told to “know their worth” and ask for it. But when it comes to those in the service industry, or other hourly workers, the expectation is that you should keep your mouth shut and feel grateful about having work at all — even if your job is labour-intensive and comes with real safety risks. In addition to salary, think about whether your current job provides other forms of compensation, like health insurance or paid time off.

Is work the main source of my stress?

A lot of things can impact our mental health, including our job. But if that’s not the case, and most of the threats to your mental wellness come from outside of work, quitting your job probably isn’t going to improve your stress levels. If your job is the main cause of your stress, though, and negatively impacts almost every aspect of your life (i.e. your ability to sleep and eat healthily, your relationships, etc), it’s probably time to look for something else.

Is my workload feasible?

Jobs can vary significantly in terms of the workload and meeting certain targets — whether they’re sales numbers, website traffic goals, or numbers of customer service calls answered in a day. Think about whether you can realistically handle what’s currently on your plate both now and over a period of time.

What would I lose by quitting?

In addition to focusing on what your current job isn’t offering you, take note of what you’d lose if you quit (in addition to a steady paycheck). This could be everything from close friendships, a flexible manager, a familiar routine, and company-specific perks.

Are there any ways to make my current job better?

If you’re at the point where you’re considering quitting, chances are you’ve already spoken with your manager about whether there’s anything that can be done to address the aspects of your job that aren’t working out. (If not, start there, if that’s an option.) There’s no rule saying you have to wait for your employer to bring up the possibility of a promotion, raise, or a more flexible schedule, for example.

If your problem is with the overall workplace culture, that’s not really something you can fix. But if you’re open to staying with the company if you’re able to work remotely half of the time, for example, it’s worth asking about it.

How will I pay for things after quitting?

It’s crucial to think about what your financial situation would be should you quit your job. Do you have any savings? If so, how many months can you go without a steady source of income? Do you have another job lined up? These are all things to think about before putting in your notice.

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