How to Get Out of a Job You Hate - The Definitive Guide to Self Improvement

How to Get Out of a Job You Hate

Hate is a pretty strong word, but I think a lot of people out there will agree that its use is justified in this article.  I don’t need to cite any statistics or reports to tell you that there are a lot of people out there who absolutely hate their jobs.  You probably know at least one person in your social circle who can relate to that.

They hate it to the point where they feel sick to their stomach going to work every morning.  They feel dread on Sunday afternoon, knowing that in less than 12 hours, they have to go back for another week of hell.

The reasons vary – the job is not well suited to their personality, bad management, bad co-workers, meager pay, with most people feeling like small cogs in a well oiled business machine.

So how do you get out of a job you hate?  It would be really easy to say “Just quit” wouldn’t it?

But alas, life is not so easy.  There are bills to pay, stomachs to feed, things to buy, so these circumstances chain us in a seemingly never ending cycle.

What’s even worse is when you’re stuck in a career you hate.

A lot of people pursue a career for the money only to find they don’t like it, and get stuck in it in the sense that they only accrue experience specific to that career and unknowingly  pigeon hole themselves in that career by doing so.

To help with this hidden epidemic, here is a step by step method you can use to help get you out of a job/career you absolutely hate and into one that you’ll absolutely love.

1.  Simply your life.  Simplify, simplify, simplify. 

What a lot of people seem to do is purchase expensive or unnecessary products and services to alleviate and distract them from the pain of working in jobs they hate.

Big screen HDTVs, cable TV, expensive cars, etc., and what this does is further dig them in a hole.  How so?

With these new purchases, they become more enslaved in debt AND time.  Not only are their resources put toward things that won’t help them get out of a job/career they hate, their time is diverted elsewhere, time and resources that can be used to tackle the problem dead on, rather than avoid it.

I constantly get emails from people who “have it all” from society’s point of view.  Expensive car, the latest gadgets, beautiful wife, yet they feel unfulfilled and dread going to work everyday and that’s no way to live at all.

Most people get the whole equation backwards.  They work in jobs they hate but do it anyway and buy material items to look “successful” in other people’s eyes, and continue to do so in order to keep up the charade, all in the meantime having their insides twist and turn every time they pull into work.

The main reasons why you should simplify your life are to give you the time and resources to focus on getting out of the job you hate and into a job/career/business you’ll love.

There are tons of ways to simplify your life.

Cut the TV and the cable. (so you can free time and brainpower)
Buy a used car.
Move to a smaller residence.
Stop eating out so much (huge factor)
Learn to cook.
Sell what you don’t need.
Keep track of what you spend everyday (it really adds up)
Do you really need Starbucks everyday?
The bus is a great way to travel (especially with gas prices these days).
Save your loose change.

By no means am I telling you to become a monk and live in the mountains.  All I’m saying is start to differentiate between needs and wants and discipline yourself to simplify your life and what you’ll find is that you’ll be pleasantly surprised at just how much time and money you can actually save.

When you simplify your life, you’ll find yourself with more time and resources on your hands.  What do you do with those precious resources?

2.  Develop Cross Marketable Skills.

This is where a lot of people get stuck.  You can spend all the time you want accruing experience, but that will only serve to trap you in your current career, which is exactly what you don’t want if you hate your job/career.

Developing cross marketable skills is what will help free you to pursue other job opportunities and careers.

Cross marketable meaning that they will serve you in any job or career, regardless of industry. 

What are some cross marketable skills to develop?

Selling/Persuasion – selling yourself and your ideas to others – this skills is needed more often than you think.

When you’re on the interview, what are you essentially doing?
When you want a raise, what are you doing?
When you suggest implementing your idea, what are you doing?

There is nothing sleazy about selling.  Many people associate selling with ripping the other party off.  Not so.  If the product/services is good, which is YOU, learning how to sell yourself and your ideas should be your top priority.  There are a ton of books on this subject and it wouldn’t hurt to read some of them.

Creativity – technology is replacing a lot of jobs that involve routine.  A simple example is the cashier.  Most places are equipped with self check out stands now.  Creativity is the ONE thing that will NEVER be replaced by technology.  NEVER.  Developing this quality will separate you from the pack.

Effective Communication – I don’t think I need to explain this one.

Social Skills – most jobs will require interaction with people so it would be prudent to learn how to interact with people.

Self Leadership – nothing is more satisfying than knowing you can count on yourself to get the job done.  And nothing is more satisfying to employers than knowing you have the self leadership to get the job done as well.  No looking over the shoulder.  Complete peace of mind.  It’s been delegated, it will be done.

Time Management – this is a subset of self leadership and it wouldn’t hurt to learn how to manage your  time efficiently as well.

Technology Skills – especially computer related skills.  If you’re still having trouble with computers, it would be wise to invest some time in money and learn how to utilize them.  Technology is one of the most effective forms of leverage for any business and businesses will continue to use them so you might as well hop on board if you haven’t already done so.

* Note:  These skills will help regardless of whether you choose to go down the employee or entrepreneur path.

Develop these intangible skills and you’ll have a nice edge you can bring to the table.

3.  Find What You Love to Do in the Meantime.

Again, if you’ve simplified your life, you’ll have time and resources on your hands.  You use these precious resources to develop your cross marketable skills AND to find what you love to do.

How do you find what you love to do?  I’ve written an article about it .  I’ve also written a very comprehensive book on the subject due to huge demand from readers entitled: How to FINALLY Find What You Love to Do AND Get Paid For Doing It:  The DEFINITIVE Guide To Finding and Successfully Pursuing Your Passion.

When you find what you love, spend time on that subject.  Become an expert on it.

The great thing about this is that you will naturally become on expert on the subject you love because you spend so much time on it.

You read books about it; you think about it all day long, you practice it.

If you think about it, that’s ultimately what we get paid for – expertise.  That’s the bottom line.

Programmers get paid because of their expertise in programming software.
Project managers get paid because of their expertise in managing projects.
Accountants get paid because of their expertise in crunching numbers.

Expertise is a natural byproduct of pursuing what you love to do and people will pay for expertise.

4.  Develop Skills, Knowledge, and Experience Related to What You Love to Do.

With your newfound time and resources, this should be easy and natural to do as well.

Skills will become a natural byproduct of spending time doing what you love to do and practicing it.

Knowledge will be a natural byproduct as well.  You’ll want to know all about the subject you’re passionate about so you’ll read the newspapers, books, articles, etc., that are related to what you love to do.

With all the time and knowledge and skills you accrue, all of that morphs into experience. 

Here’s a really simple example to put together everything we’ve discussed so far.

You’ve simplified your life.  You’ve cut down on expenses.  You find yourself having freed the precious resources of time and money.  You develop your cross marketable skills.  You spend your time figuring out what you love to do and you find it and let’s say for example’s sake, it’s making people laugh, telling jokes, stand up comedy, etc.

What now?

Rather than spending money on buying rims for your car, you start buying stand up comedy material from Chris Rock to Jerry Seinfeld.  You spend your time thinking of jokes and anecdotes to tell rather than watching the latest episode of Lost.  You seek out a mentor and convince him (thanks to developing your cross marketable skill of persuasion) to help guide you in this new career.  You read the books.  You try some stand up at a local bar.  You apply for a night gig at the local comedy shop, etc.

You see how all of these steps intertwine to help one another?

5.  Job Hunt / Start Your Own Business

When you’ve done all this – simplified your life to free up time and resources to develop cross marketable skills and find what you love and developed skills, experience, and knowledge related to that, something inside of you will begin to shine.

You begin to have purpose.  You have direction.  You’re going somewhere, rather than having that hopeless feeling of being “stuck” in the job/career you hate.

And with that newfound momentum, it’s time to job hunt or start your own business doing what you love to do.  This will be easier to do since you’ve developed those cross marketable skills and accrued skills, knowledge, and experience doing what you love to do, hence making you an expert.

6.  Quit Your Job.

The time in which you quit your job is entirely up to you.

Some people may be able to do steps 1-5 while working at their job.

Others may find that to not be the case.

In any event, steps 1-3 CAN be done while working at your current job (simplify your life, develop cross marketable skills, find what you love to do).

If you feel that you won’t have enough time to do steps 4-5 while working at your current job, you can wait until you’ve saved enough money from step 1 to live for three months.

You can then find a part time job that will keep them afloat while you engage in steps 4 and 5.

Quitting your job is a powerful motivator because when you MUST do something, you WILL do it.  If you keep telling yourself that you’ll do it later, you’ll always be stuck at your job.  Quitting your job serves like a good kick in the pants. Just make sure you have something to fall back on before you do it.

When you’re doing what you love to do, the payoff is so much better.  Your health will improve.  You’ll be less depressed. Your relationships with friends and family will improve as well.  You’ll actually be eager to wake up Monday morning.

The journey you go through from simplifying your life to pursuing your passion, it may be full of ups and downs but in the end, it’s worth it.

It really is worth it.

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