Are you sick of your job? Do you wish you were somewhere – anywhere – else when you’re at your 9-5? Why is it that we have to get totally fed up before we take steps to find a workplace that is a better fit for us? The answer might lie in one of these nine common limiting beliefs that keep you trapped in a job you hate.
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Limiting Belief #1: I don’t have time to look for another job
I get it. When you’re already working a full-time job the one luxury you don’t have it time. So no, you don’t have time.
The truth is that time is a limited commodity. We all get 168 hours in a week and that’s it.
Since it’s a given that you don’t have time – or at least that you don’t have extra time – the question you have to ask yourself is how badly you want to get out of the job you currently have and in to a new one.
Because if you are honest-to-goodness sick-and-tired of your job, you’ll just have to figure out how to squeeze job-hunting in to an already packed schedule.
It may mean that you spend your lunch hour updating your resume or filling out applications. It might even mean you take a half day off to attend an interview.
Yes, it’s a pain. No one is denying that fact. But this limiting belief keeps you trapped because you don’t even try to find something else.
The only thing that’s up for discussion is how badly you want out of your current job.
Limiting Belief #2: I’m not trained to do anything else
Were you completely trained and competent for your current job when you started it?
You may have had the “right” degree and the “right” experience for the job you have now, but odds are that there were still things you had to learn on the job. Every job is different even – within the same field.
So what makes you think you can’t be trained to do something else? Assuming you’re intelligent, competent, and an able -learner (and I definitely assume you are or you wouldn’t be here!) then you’re more than able to learn a new job.
If you’re buying into this common limiting belief then you might want to ask yourself why. Chances are good you’re using this limiting belief as an excuse to avoid putting yourself out there and taking a chance that you might not get some other job you’d really like. If that’s the case then maybe admitting that there’s always some fear that goes along with taking a risk will help bolster your courage.
Looking for a new job IS scary! Admit it to yourself and get moving.
Limiting Belief #3: No one else is going to want to hire me
This limiting belief is another version of the one just above. You may not be happy with your present boss, but at least you know what he/she expects. What’s that saying about “the devil you know versus the devil you don’t”.
Even if you have the boss from “down under” (and I don’t mean Australia), at least you know their quirks. The thought of learning how to get along with a new boss is intimidating. But you learned how to co-exist with your present boss – you can do it again.
Limiting Belief #4: Job hopping will look bad on my resume
Gone are the days when we went to work for one employer and stayed there until we were presented a gold watch at retirement (is that even a thing any more?). These days it’s not unusual for people to move to different jobs as opportunities arise – and fortunately, the stigma that this might have had in the past is disappearing (younger people have already figured this out – those of us who are past a “certain age” seem to struggle with it more).
I remember when we used to look at the job history on an applicant’s resume and wonder if there was some bad omen when we’d see that an applicant had held several different jobs without staying at any one for too long. Now I’m not advocating that you change jobs as frequently as you change your underwear, but most of us are probably too cautious and are more likely to stay at a job after it’s time to leave.
This common limiting belief belongs in the past so don’t put off searching for a better job because you’re worried that it will look bad. Besides, if you’re moving in to (hopefully) better jobs, it’s easily explained.
Limiting Belief #5: I’ll have to start at the bottom if I switch jobs
This limiting belief is based on the fear of losing job status or salary. And while it’s true that you might have to start at the bottom depending on what type of new job you move in to. But here’s where you’ll need to ask yourself those hard questions about whether the reduction in salary or prestige might be worth it if it enables you to get out of a job you hate.
Ultimately, you’re the only one who can answer this question, but that doesn’t mean that making the switch won’t be worth it in the long run.
Limiting Belief 6: I’ll be lonely if I leave my work friends behind
Honestly, you might be.
At least for a little while until you make some new work friends.
This limiting fear of being the “new kid” or outsider is a tough one. I can empathize 100% with this concern because I’ve experienced it – several times actually. And it’s hard to leave behind friends.
But here’s the deal….there is a difference between real friends and “work” friends.
You do know the difference, right? If you’re not sure then ask yourself how and where you see these friends. If the answer is that you only see them at work and work-related events, then they are just work friends.
Not that there’s anything wrong with “work” friends. In fact, our work friends make your jobs happier and more pleasant. But in the big scheme of things these friends are ultimately only friends because you’re thrown together through your job. Your shared interest is work. Your common topic of conversation is sharing work news. When you take those elements away you may find that you don’t have as much in common as you thought you did.
On the other hand, it’s possible to truly bond with people you’ve met through work. You talk about things other than your job. You become close and feel like sisters.
However, the real test of friendship will be whether that person continues to pursue the friendship with you when you’re no longer there at work. No matter how close you thought you were, if the friendship withers and becomes distant, then you have your answer.
And I’m not going to lie….it’s painful. I’ve been there.
Limiting Belief #7: I might not like the next job either
This one is true – you might not like the next job.
It might turn out to be just as distasteful as the job you’ve got now.
On the other hand, you already know that you don’t like your present job. So what’s the difference between hating this job or hating the next one? It seems that the only real risk you run is that you just might like the next job.
You’ll never know till you give it a shot.
Limiting Belief #8: All jobs are horrible these days
Now this one is untrue and if you’re buying into this common limiting belief then you’re just wallowing in a pity party.
All jobs are not horrible! Granted, some jobs are better than others. Some jobs offer better pay, better benefits, better working conditions, or better surroundings, but all jobs aren’t awful.
But if you’re rather use this as an excuse to stay trapped where you are then be my guest.
Limiting Belief #9: I’m too old to move into something else
I’ve got mixed news for you on this one, unfortunately.
This limiting belief does have some validity because there’s no denying that age discrimination is a thing. It seems like there does come some undefinable age where your experience (and age) is no longer an asset. Obviously, I can’t tell you what age that is (thus the “undefinable” part) and it probably depends on the industry.
But here’s the deal – if you do manage to move into something else you can be pretty confident that it was because the new employer did value your age or experience.
And here’s the other fact about this concern: you aren’t getting any younger. If you’re ever going to make a change now is as good a time as any.
So do you see yourself in any of these beliefs? Have you ever uttered any of these things to yourself – or even thought them for a minute?
Sometimes we try to ignore the signs that it’s time for a change. And it can be very hard to break free and take the chance on moving into another job or even into a whole new field. But when it gets right down to it you’ve got two choices: stay where you are and be miserable or take a chance that you might find something that you actually enjoy.
For more help, check out this article on How To Overcome the Limiting Beliefs You Have About Your Career Change.
More before you go:
Making changes in our life is tough. Here’s How To Get The Life You Want: 8 Things You Must Give Up