You hate your job. It makes you miserable. But you finally worked up the courage to search for a new one. And not only did you get an offer, but it’s one you’re really excited about.
Now you’re counting down the days until you can walk out the door and leave behind your horrible boss, those terrible co-workers, that hideously gray cubicle, and [insert whatever else you loathed].
All your problems are solved. Right? Well, um, wrong.
Look, I don’t want to rain on your parade. I’m thrilled for you, I swear! You’ve identified a source of your discontent and you’ve eliminated it from your life. That’s awesome. Many people let fear stop them from doing that, but you didn’t.
But before you gallop off into the sunset and start your new job, I need you to understand that this role won’t be all rainbows and unicorns. And to truly get that, you need to stop telling yourself these two lies.
1. I Won’t Be Stressed Out Anymore
A few weeks ago, I chatted with a close friend who quit her teaching career and landed a corporate sales gig. When I asked how she was feeling about this big life change, she said she was really pumped to leave all the stress behind.
I smiled. Kind of.
Believe me, I wish she was leaving it all behind. But, frankly, that’s just not reality. The fact of the matter is, no matter what job you have, you’re going to feel some type of stress.
And, sure, it might be for different reasons than before, and you might not feel it quite as much, but it won’t be nonexistent. I’m sure my friend will no longer have to worry about one of her student’s parents screaming at her in the hallway, but she’ll probably feel a little pressured and overwhelmed when trying to meet her sales goals for the very first time.
Stress is a part of life. Learn how to deal with it and you’ll be golden. (And, yes—if it starts taking over every moment at the office and bleeding into your personal life, something needs to change.)
Need help learning to deal, here are a few places to start:
2. I’ll Be Totally Happy Now
I’m a firm believer that, for the most part, your happiness is in your hands. Yes, there will sometimes be horrible situations out of your control that interfere with that. Big time. But, in general, it has a lot to do with our decisions and our mindset.
Sure, choosing to get out of a position that’s ruining your life will probably make you smile more. But it won’t automatically make everything better. There’s not one external factor in your life that can do that—not money, not occupation, not other people. They all play into the overall equation, but they’ll have little impact if you have a crappy attitude.
If you consistently let negativity permeate your thoughts, you’ll quickly identify the things you don’t like about this new position and be right back to where you started—miserable.
And don’t worry—I’m not completely daft. I understand that, no matter how happy you are with your job, you’re going to have bad days. And bad weeks. Heck, you might even have a bad month at work. But your happiness shouldn’t rest solely on the shoulders of your occupation. Instead, you need to have multiple sources of it. That way, when one of them runs dry for whatever reason, you don’t enter into a full-on drought.
To get started on that, here a few suggestions:
Again, I truly commend you for taking this step and moving on from a role that just didn’t belong in your life. I’m just telling you all this because I don’t want you to set yourself up for disappointment. I learned this the hard way.
Two different times I started a brand new job on top of the world, telling myself I’d be there for years, if not forever. I left the first opportunity in eleven months and the second in just two years.
I’m hoping that, if you confront these lies before you move on, you won’t be completely thrown off when your new job stresses you out or when you don’t feel elated every minute of every day. Instead, you’ll be able to take those moments in stride and focus on the good parts of the new gig and how much better it truly is than the last.