Fallen Out of Love With Work? Here's How to Start the Breakup Process...
Updated: Jun 7
Statistics tell us that, over a 76-year lifespan, you’ll spend 21 percent of your life at work. If you spend 50 years in the workplace, then you’ll spend 35 percent of your waking hours on the job. Those numbers may sound depressing — but to be honest, they shouldn’t be.
The truth is, there are plenty of people who enjoy their work and take pleasure and satisfaction in doing their job. If you’re shaking your head in disbelief, then you probably don’t like your job — and that means it’s time for a change.
If you’re thinking about dipping your toe in the water, here are few tips to get you started.
Dating (the Job Market), Take Baby Steps
For Women, changing jobs can be an especially daunting proposition, because we're already conditioned to have lower expectations from the job market. For instance, there's still a significant gender pay gap in the US. In 2017, the median annual earnings for women totaled $41,997, compared to $52,146 for men.
Likewise, stories of workplace gender discrimination still abound. According to a 2017 study from Pew Research Center, 52 percent of women employed in mostly-male workplaces said that women weren’t treated fairly in recruitment/hiring, and 62 percent said that women weren’t given fair chances for promotion/advancement.
With numbers like these, it’s no wonder that so many women are apprehensive about changing jobs or re-entering the workplace. On the plus side, however, millions of women have jobs they enjoy — and they’re not only satisfied, they’re also earning enough money to pay for escalating childcare costs. In many cases, these women succeeded because they identified their niche employment market, and prepared for it by getting the training and career counseling they needed.
Start Toning Up (Your job search, that is)
In today’s economy, we’re constantly faced with employment pundits saying that you should take any job you can get; but as women, we’re confronted by companies that don’t always hire, pay or treat women equally. Plus, many women need access to affordable daycare, as well as flexible schedules due to childcare issues. All too often, women think that if they’re lucky enough to work for a company that will accommodate some of these issues, they should stay put, even if they’re treated poorly.
Being unhappy is never the right answer for anything. If it’s time to make a change, women need to learn how to do so without fear. In fact, reinventing yourself and learning new, marketable skills can go a long way toward revitalizing your career.
The best way to tackle employment obstacles is to arm yourself with knowledge — whether you get it from job training courses, vocational classes or career counseling. You can take your job prospects a lot further by spending 10 minutes with a career counselor than by sending out scores of resumes to a market that’s not right for you.
In order to retain the best talent, many of today’s top companies are fostering a more humanitarian work environment, with perks such as affordable family insurance plans and better daycare amenities for working mothers. These companies are also endeavoring to create a culture of belonging that encourages employees to feel valued, while also enabling them to maintain a satisfying work/life balance. These far-seeing businesses are considered to be among the nation’s best companies for women employees.
Likewise, many of these employers are also posting “work from home” jobs that enable employees to spend at least part of their work week at home. These remote jobs are especially sought-after by women with families and can go a long way toward mitigating daily childcare expenses.
If this sounds good to you, then you need to raise the bar for yourself by seeking out these exceptional, ethical companies in your job search. You’ll find them in every industry, from fast food and retail to medical, tech and software. To increase your chances of getting hired, you might need to develop some new marketable skills, or dust off and update some of your previous capabilities– but the payoff will be well worth it, in terms of treatment and earning potential.
Prepare for When The Right One Comes Along
As women, far too often we sabotage ourselves by tolerating too much because we think that we can’t get anything better. We trap ourselves by staying where we are and resisting change. But if you want to control your destiny, you can escape that bad workplace environment or stale, depressing job by preparing yourself for when the right one comes along. When it comes to landing a better job, timing is everything. Get yourself in shape for when the perfect opportunity presents itself.
If you can’t leave your job right away, then you can give yourself an advantage and some hope. Prepare yourself by understanding what’s required in your next great role and seek job search advice (from an expert – not a friend). Studies show that this is the key to job hunting success.. In 2019 looking for a new job can be as complicated as dating. To avoid feeling paralyzed or stuck, take action by creating a Google doc and adding all the relevant resources you can find — including interview and resume tip that will impress the toughest recruiter.
When you hone your skills and getting the advice you need to tackle today’s marketplace, you’ll be amazed at how much you can achieve. And you’ll also find that, as a woman, few things are as satisfying as being in control of your career, and owning your destiny.
1. Revise Sociology
3. Pew Research Center
5. Psychology Today