Bad Reasons To Change Careers

reasons change careersYou know what they say: "The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence." If you've been coveting the greener grass of a different career, be sure to stop and reflect before you plan a major shift. While transitioning careers sometimes makes sense, many people mistakenly believe a career change will solve all of their problems. Even successful career changers may be surprised to find that they encounter the same (or worse) problems in their new careers. Before you start to explore what's on the other side of the fence, consider the following reasons not to change careers.

You hate your job. There's nothing worse than spending 40-plus hours a week doing something that you really hate. Before you plan a change, evaluate the situation. Do you loathe the work itself, or is your overbearing boss too much to take? Are you really unhappy because of the work itself, or do you wish you could wave a magic wand and send your annoying co-workers up in a cloud of smoke?

Statistics show that people tend to leave positions not because of bad jobs, but to flee bad bosses. Make sure you aren't allowing a difficult supervisor or co-worker to dictate your career trajectory. Think about how you can improve your relationship with your boss. Unfortunately, you are likely to encounter unsavory colleagues and employers in any field.

Your hours are too long. You yearn for flexibility, but your employer demands 24/7 dedication. It would seem that a career change may be the answer, but unfortunately, you may find that starting over in a new career puts you at the bottom of the proverbial food chain. As the "new guy," you could be tasked with weekends on call and long hours. Most employers expect longer hours from their workers due to layoffs and a need to produce more with less. While a shift may help avoid certain unfavorable characteristics of your current career, make sure you aren't jumping from the frying pan into the fire. Research new options carefully to be sure you won't be trading one problem for another.

You can't get a raise or a promotion. It's tempting to plan to throw in the towel on an entire career if you've hit the earning ceiling or if the money and recognition aren't worth the effort. Is a new career really the answer, or might some key changes in your current job put you in a position to win the praise and raise you seek? Have you been coasting along while new team members push ahead with new ideas? It's probably a lot easier to shift your attitude and work ethic than it is to carve out an entire new career. Make sure you think carefully before trading in what you have for something new.

More: 4 Signs It's Time To Quit Your Job

You crave predictability and consistency at work. It can be unsettling when new requirements, policies and procedures come down the pike every other week. If you hate uncertainty, it's tempting to dream about a career where you can do your job and the rules don't change, but it's not realistic.

You think a new career could be more exciting. You've been doing the same thing for years; wouldn't making a change put a new spring in your step? It might. However, many career changers are disappointed to learn that they bring many of the same negative feelings about work to their new careers. Even a new career becomes old in time. Before planning your career shift, make sure you think about what you need to change in your life and consider the various opportunities to incite that change. For example, if your job isn't challenging, maybe you could spend your extra energy creating a freelance business to bring in extra money on the side. Or, if you're not entrepreneurial, identify some activities you've always wanted to try and join a club with other aficionados.


Work isn't the only place where you can make changes in your life. Before you jump over the fence to walk on the greener grass, be sure to consider other alternatives and clarify your expectations. You don't want to be surprised to learn that every lawn has some weeds.

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Melisa

I had to double check the title and saw that it said careers, because I guess it pretty much means your area of expertise. If it had said jobs then, first of all there are several kinds of jobs in just one particular career and these reasons would DEFINITELY be reasonable enough to want to leave...I'm so tired of seeing and hearing people getting taking advantage of, working too many hours for too little money. It seems like everything goes up in price and wages don't and if you say you've seen wages go up slightly then it sure is not rising as fast as everything else that is needed to live. If these reasons are not reasonable enough then what is? People at the top, CEO's, and corporations must be the ones agreeing with this article. We the people need to stand up and not settle for the schemes because if we continue on this path there will no longer be a middle class. The rich become richer and the poor become poorer. The minimum wage should be at least $10 all ready and that's with things priced the way they are now. If we raise the min wage to $10 they better not dare raise things again, because in that case raise the $10 too! You guys got me right? Anyways I'm just tired of seeing how things are going! I pray for more justice and less corruption and if our law makers won't do it who will? God bless our president for striving for the people, I just hope these other "top people" stop bickering and do what's right for everyone and not the few!

March 07 2013 at 6:22 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Melisa's comment
viviglam

Well said!

March 08 2013 at 6:39 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
liondog96

What careers? I've heard of jobs----underpaid tasks. There are no careers other than emergency surgeons, orthopedics, pediatricians and State Attorneys. Do something that makes you feel like getting out of bed in the morning.

March 07 2013 at 2:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
gklehner

A well thought out, intelligent article. Good advice that easily expands outside the current context.

March 06 2013 at 8:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
cherkobak

Sometimes you have to change because what you were doing is obsolete now.

March 06 2013 at 7:25 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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