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9 Signs You Need a Career Change

Choosing paths graphic

March 30, 2016

By: Tiffany Spitzer

Starting a new job is never easy. Even in the smoothest of transitions, there is always an element of uncertainty. Will you fit in? Is there a downside that you didn’t see during the interview process? Will you miss your old job?

The anxiety is magnified when you’re not just changing jobs, but changing careers. Don’t let apprehension hold you back, though. A career change can be extremely rewarding, and there are times when it is absolutely necessary to take the leap. If you’re considering a new career, you’re probably experiencing a state of limbo. Some days you enjoy your current job; other days, you want out. Overcome the indecisiveness by recognizing these 9 signs it’s time for a career change:

You Feel Like You’re on Autopilot

Do you feel like you’re living the life of Phil (Bill Murray) in the movie Groundhog Day—the same day, on repeat, over and over again? It’s great to have a routine, but if you’re completely listless and disengaged day in and day out at work, it may be time for a change of pace and scenery.

You’re No Longer Challenged

The reason autopilot is a bad mode to be in at work is because it means you’re not being challenged. And if you’re not being challenged, you’re not gaining any sense of accomplishment. That equates to sheer boredom, which can often make a job more unbearable even than busyness.

Your Passion Has Diminished

The old cliché, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life” rings entirely true. If you realize that you don’t love your job, consider it a step forward in finding your true passion, and seek opportunities that you envision might be more fulfilling. In the end, you will eventually find the coveted “work that doesn’t feel like work” that so many successful people allude to.

You Don’t Care as Much as Your Colleagues Do

When you first started in your current position, you were excited about the possibilities. You took your assignments seriously, and felt a sense of gratification whenever objectives were met. Now, you feel disinterested and disconnected. The meetings seem pointless, and it wouldn’t really bother you as much if you missed a deadline or let the team down.

Sound like you? If so, don’t be fooled into thinking the same job somewhere else will make you any happier.

You Feel Depressed on Sunday Evenings

Everyone loves the weekend. But if you cling to weekends and consistently feel devastated when they end, you’re coping with much more than the lighthearted Monday morning sigh you hear around the office. On Sunday nights, you should feel relaxed and refreshed for the week ahead—not genuinely upset that you have to go to work in the morning.

You Have a Hard Time Getting Out of Bed in the Morning

On the Monday morning note, getting out of bed every day shouldn’t be an epic challenge. Now, there’s waking up, and there’s getting out of bed. If you’re sleep-deprived or physically exhausted, it’s perfectly normal to hit the snooze button a few times before you finally wake up. But, if your mind keeps you in bed long after your eyes are open—if you have no difficulty waking up yet struggle to get out of bed—it’s a clear sign that your career is not enriching your life.

You Dread Coming Back from Vacation

Vacation is one of life’s greatest indulgences, and it’s always bittersweet when one comes to an end. But by the end of a weeklong getaway, you would hope to feel invigorated and ready to get back to work. Furthermore, people who love their jobs usually find themselves antsy to return to the office after even a few days off.

Nowhere to Grow

Do you feel stuck in your career with no clear promotion to shoot for? Would you never in a million years want your boss’ job? Have you recently gotten a raise, only to have the excitement fade back into monotony after just a few weeks? Having ‘nowhere to grow’ is one of the most discouraging positions to be in, and almost always means it’s time to consider new endeavors.

The Only Reason You Stay is Because You Like Your Coworkers

When you’ve worked somewhere for a long period of time, your peers will naturally become your friends. People often stay in jobs they know they’re not happy in because they love the people they work with. It’s great if you feel this way about your coworkers, but don’t let them be the reason you settle for an unfulfilling career. Farewells to friends are a part of life, and true friends will always stay in touch!

Find Your Dream Career

Do you have an urge to pursue a new vision, learn new things, meet new people, and hit the reset button with a career that excites you? The Hospitality and Tourism Management (HTM) Master’s Program at San Diego State University is a catalyst for those who seek to challenge themselves and develop as leaders in promising new careers. We’re not your typical graduate program—see what we do differently.


tiffany Author: Tiffany Spitzer, Former NBC San Diego Executive Producer (LinkedIn)

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