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How do you know when its time to leave?

By Presidio ·
Is it time for a change?
Just a job change or a career change?

I?ve been programming for over 10 years (several different companies). There was a time when I loved it, now I dread coming to work. For about 6 months now I leave work each day with my jaw clenched; shoulder/neck muscles tight; stomach in a knot and spend my entire drive home trying to relax.

Sometimes I think that it is this particular work environment. My supervisor has changed, company location has changed, and there is major staff turnover. There is also no chance to keep up with new technology. However I live in a small community with very limited new opportunities.

Sometimes I think I need a complete new direction. I still have moments where I really get into the code and enjoy developing, but I wonder if both the IT industry and I have changed too much.

I?ve had personal life changes too and would actually rather work part time. Working more then 8 hours in a day feels like such punishment.

Getting a paycheck is 95% of the reason I show up for work every day. I get paid well but would rather earn less and enjoy my job.

So where does one go from here?

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A long road.....

by 2 Many Connections In reply to Hobby!!

I have been in the work force for 24 years ,since graduating college. I have held three different jobs - Restaurant manager - Presales technical support - database administrator/system admin. The last has been since 1989 and I have had the opportunity to work with Paradox, Oracle, SQL, Progress, Solaris, AIX, HP-unix and Linux. Recently I am so burnt out due to downsizing, 7x24 coverage, repetive project work, spam, and lack of opportunity. I find myself scanning Monster and the internet almost daily looking for a new job that is not there. Not there because I am burnt out on this one and can't see the forest for the trees. What is most difficult is trying to retain salary while switching industries, departments, philosophy. Still I feel motivated by this article. Light at the end of the tunnel can also be seen through the eyes of others that still have motivation and excitement about their current work opportunity. I am finding that getting up and away from my desk and talking to others at work from other departments/backgrounds helps bring new insites into what I can be working towards as a new opportunity for me.

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Good point! - When a Chiropracter is required

by ITGuyy In reply to When a chiropractor is re ...

I know a developer who was having a real hard time finding the will to live and programm Revelation databases at the same time. Not only was it ugly work, but long hours. Instead of quiting, he took up learning the ancient Greek language as a hobby. He found his burn out wasn't that bad afterall and was able to continue to work.

Didn't Calvin and Hobbes have a cartoon that recommended having a terrible hobby so you cherished your day job?


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Calvin's Dad

by MadDogDBA In reply to Good point! - When a Chir ...

?The secret to enjoying your job is to have a hobby that is even worse.? - Calvin?s Dad

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There's a world of jobs within IT. Look for a firm and a job you will like

by DelbertPGH In reply to When a chiropractor is re ...

If you change fields without knowing what you want you can just go from dull to duller and make less money, too. You have experience in I.T., and I.T. is wide and pervasive. There are a million different job descriptions for a computer nerd, and each job is different in each company, and frequently differs from department to department within a company. Don't look at the one job you've got and the one office you're in and say that I.T. has lost its spark... look out in the world. Unless, of course, you've got secret suppressed ambitions that you've always wanted to fulfill, like bartending or running a store or teaching. In that case, make your plans, and go for what you want. But if you don't know, find out.

You live in a small town? I've lived in five isolated small towns and in metro suburbs and in cities, and I personally say the **** with small. But if that's the place you like, then you should probably accept commuting long distances in pursuit of money, diversity, and excitement.

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Programmers can do other positions

by BobRouseAtl In reply to There's a world of jobs w ...

Until recently I was a Tech Support guy who did programming as one of the "hats" I wore. I discovered I liked the programming part of my job the best. It took my company relocating to another state to give me the kick in the *** I needed to find another job. Now I am a programmer full-time.

You could try going the other direction. Tech Support can be rewarding with the right company, and programming skills can be helpful. They might need you to write a utility to solve a troubleshooting or conversion issue. There might also be an opportunity to travel (some might consider that a negative, but I still haven't used up all of the frequent flyer points I've accumulated).

The point is - there are a lot of opportunities for people who are willing to be brave and creative when assessing their desires and skills. You might consider a 3rd party company to help you with this. There's no reason to stay stuck in a sucky job.

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What color is the "hole" in your paracute?

by xina45 In reply to When a chiropractor is re ...

Yes the book what color is your paracute?, 2004: A practical manual for Job Hunters & Carerr-Changes by Richard Nelson Bolles is still available. It's a great investment of about $13.00 or so. Of course you can find this book at your local library as well.

I have never worked for the money. (Not that I don't need the money) but I work more for personal satisfaction and what I can contribute over the pay. If it was for pay, I'd have left my current position years ago! LOL

There have been co-workers that have gotten physically ill at the idea of having to come and face another day of work. DEFINITELY time to make a change. The change doesn't necessarily mean leaving your current employer. Maybe just mixing up the hours or duties is enough. Burn-out happens. You have to look at what is causing the burn-out, is it the task(s), environment, health? When I've left previous jobs, it was due to waking up too many times dreading having to go into work. For me, that's MY que that it's time to leave.

Good Luck to you!

P.S. I highly recommend you read What Color Is Your Parachute? It has some great (yet quick) self-quizes to help you discover (if you don't already know) what environment in which you do like to work. For example, I enjoy working in the law enforcement environment, I like the "language" here (language used in this sense is from Bolles book).

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Stay unless you can find something

by JimHM In reply to How do you know when its ...

Hang in there until you find something else and learn to relax ZaZen - or some form and don't take the job out of the office door. They don't pay you enough, even if they did - I wouldn't take it out of the office (health is more important than anything)

I was in programming for about the same amount of time and got out. The challegne departed - it was the same thing day in and day out. So started learning Unix/PC/Networking on my own, but didn't make a move until I had something solid to jump to. At the same company so the pay stayed at the same level.

Sounds like you are at the FUPM - point. A little term I coined - came to the attitude that "F.U.Pay Me" was the way to come and go from the office.

You want extra this from me - FU Pay Me ...
You want extra that from me - FU Pay Me ...
You want extra beyond - FU Pay Me ...
I will bust my hump for the 8.5 hours a day I work, beyond that - was F.U. Pay Me.

The employment contract called for 7.5 hours a day and extra only when ness - 8.5 was an extra hour every day.. they wanted more - Pay Me.

Life is to short - If you are moving up with the company then give them the extra - if they are just abusive to you - then FUPM is the word of the day.

But for you sit back - Get the FUPM attitude - learn to relax (ZaZen or Zen or some form) - You is stressed out ...

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thanks for the boost

by catleya In reply to Stay unless you can find ...

JimHM.. you just gave me a boost to stay in my office today. I am sick and tired of my job that I was going to leave today, 5 minutes before I read your entry. THANK!!! =)))

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When I feel like it or am not ecstatic about working there anymore.

by Oz_Media In reply to How do you know when its ...

There is no reason whatsoever that anything can or should dominate your lifestyle other than YOUR happiness. THe biggest mistake people make in life is feeling obligated to stay with an employer as it is a paycheck, it is a steady income and all that other insecure, comfort zone rubbish. "But I have bills topay, but I have a family waaaaaaaah! "
SO what, if you are that useless that you can't earn enough money to pay the bills without someone writing you a cheque and placing money in your account each month, you deserve any unhappiness that you have.

I am a firm believer and it was proven to me also that you do NOT have to work for someone else in orer to make do. You just need skills and or drive.

Do whatever your heart desires as you want to do it, don't let people tell you about security and needing other work first or ny of that, just get off your butt and do it. YOu will notice that most people who say to stay put until something else is available have also been working in the sameplace most of thier lives, can you say RUT.

Some people don't have the drive and initiative to get out on thier own, don't listen to them, you CAN do it, you WILL do it, so just go and do it. It really isn't hard to drum up a couple of grand a month to keep going as you setout on your own.

Good luck, don't be scared into staying put.


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True - But

by JimHM In reply to When I feel like it or am ...

That is true Ozzie - and no one or nothing is holding yours, mine or anyones feet from walking out the door. When the "Defecation hits the rotatory oscillator".

So rather than have him hang in until he could safely transfer between companies or jobs - you say quit now - depart -

So if he departs and can't find a job in a few months then he could move to Canada and go on Canadian welfare - were him and his family woud get food, clothing, housing and medical care for nothing right... Cool - idea... Let someone else do all the work and others get all the gravy. I like it ... send them all to Canada ..

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