One of my goals for 2017 is to attend more professional networking events, so that’s what I’ve been doing. I attended the Moguls in Media DC Tour stop — a fun, trendy and informative networking event that featured a panel with speakers who have recently broken into the media industry, others who have long, thriving careers and some who didn’t even go to school to work in media. Needless to say, it was a diverse group whose unique experiences were very insightful.
As with any panel, there was one participant who wanted to know how best to transition from a 9 to 5 and into a less conventional career that involves work that you truly love. Her story is common — She hates her job and doesn’t feel fulfilled.
Now, I don’t know the girl who asked the question, but if this was not her first rodeo, I’m sure she has heard the responses given countless times.
“…Change your mindset about your 9 to 5.”
“Every hour you spend at your 9 to 5 is an hour less spent doing what you love.”
“…Think of your 9 to 5 as what’s funding your passion.”
We get it. Don’t quit your job, but don’t be afraid to take risks, but be grateful you have a job.
Truthfully, these are all great answers because there is no right answer to this question since it will vary from person to person. I think the best advice for this type of situation is to think of your job like any other relationship. When relationships become toxic, you break up. Simple. So simple that I’m going to lay out four reasons you should break up with your job (or significant other) so you don’t have to spend any more time thinking about it.
1. Break up if you’re not growing.
Contrary to popular belief (on social media at the beginning of the New Year), change is good. Growth is good. You don’t want to become complacent and be the same person that you were when you first started a job or first started dating. If your situation isn’t challenging you to be a better version of yourself, isn’t providing opportunities for you to learn, and isn’t helping you embark on new experiences, you need to cut it.
2. Break up if you’re not getting reciprocity.
Never give your all if you’re not getting it back in return. A relationship is not and should not be one-sided, whether it’s with a job or a bae. Would you keep calling a person all the time if that person never calls you? No. So why on earth would you keep working strenuous hours and taking on more responsibilities with no pay raise or promotion or other benefits? If the effort that you put into a relationship is not being matched, you need to cut it.
3. Break up if your wants and needs are not being met.
What do you want and desire? Do you deserve it? If so, demand it. Evaluate whether your needs and wants are being met. Needs are more important and should be a priority and always provided. Wants should always be voiced and acknowledged, but keep in mind that some people or jobs are not always equipped to deliver your wants, and that’s okay. You have to know when to move on. Your evaluation should deem what needs and wants are truly important to you and if they’re not being provided, you need to cut it.
4. Break up if you’re being drained.
You should never get to a point where you put so much energy into a relationship that it affects your ability to thrive in other areas of life. A balanced life is important (duh! You are tuned in to TheBalancedBlackGirl.com!). If you get to the point where you are mentally or physically drained –ALL THE TIME — you need to cut it.
You have to respect and nurture your mental and body, and having high levels of stress due to a bad relationship just isn’t worth it.
Do yourself a favor and break up.