I don’t like my internet provider, I know there is something better out there and I get very frustrated whenever I need to talk with them, thankfully hardly ever.
So why do I stay? Like most things, it’s a faff to move and the pain and hassle of moving outweighs the pain of staying so I tell myself that they are an ok supplier until the next time something goes wrong.
It’s like this with many people who stay in jobs they don’t like. If they had a bullying boss or were filled with dread at the thought of going to work each day you would think looking for a new job would be top priority. But what often happens is that people in that situation have had their self confidence chipped away and find it hard to believe that anyone else will want them or that they can be convincing at interview. When I work with a client who has been treated in such a way, part of what I do focuses on increasing and improving their self confidence, helping them to recognise all their strengths and positive qualities and to undo some of the negative impact brought on by others.
I ask clients to rate how satisfied they are with their job. When they are as low as 2 or 3 it’s imperative that they make a change, but some have been in this limbo state for some time, one client for 3 years, several for a couple of years. They knew they needed to change, were trying to do it on their own and weren’t succeeding. Once we work together they realise that if they had started back when they first felt uncomfortable they would probably already be in their new job, but we can’t change the past and the time was probably not right for them back then, although on reflection …
For other people it’s not that bad but they don’t really enjoy being an accountant/ deep sea fisherman/ marketing exec/ PR consultant. But when I then ask to rate how they feel it’s about 5 out of 10. It’s ok, it’s just about bearable but they wonder … is there something better out there? and almost always there is. You can relate this to why people stay in an unhappy relationship for so long, and we probably spend more time at work than with our partner.
It is hard work changing careers, but it is also a great deal of fun and incredibly satisfying. My clients sometimes make minor changes and use the information they have discovered on themselves to tweak their current job to make it more satisfying. Others will make radical changes – lawyer to golf pro; nurse to yacht chef; Finance director to student of archaeology, Property manager to social worker and much more.
I gave up a safe job as Assistant Director with Royal Mail for the insecurity, and a lot less money in setting up my own business. I did it as I wanted to follow my passion and the people I work with, and probably readers of this newsletter know that I live and breathe helping others to be successful in career discovery or job search.
So why not take some time today to think if you are following the default option and you may also like to think about what it will be like for you if you continue without making any changes.
Brought to you by Denise Taylor, Chartered Psychologist, Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society and Award winning career coach.