Quitting a job is a big decision and there are many factors to consider.

I spoke to a few people recently who had terrific reasons for wanting to quit, but when it came down to actually leaving their employment, it was just too scary for them.  One person told me  “No matter how much I might dislike my job, it’s a secure paycheck, and as long as they keep paying me, I’ll keep showing up.” Another person said, “In this day and age, who wants to be looking for a new job?” One employee told me “I’m not a quitter.  I was taught not to quit.  If I quit, they win.  Plus, I think it would look bad on my resume”

These defeatist attitudes are common.

For most people, the thought of quitting their job comes after their attempts to resolve WHY they are unhappy at work.   Despite having tried everything to change the situation, they are still unhappy and the weight of the stress, anxiety and unhappiness is just too overbearing.

Making a life decision like quitting your job should be measured with realistic considerations about how this decision will affect your finances.

You should also consider the opportunities for new employment in your chosen field and work on developing a roadmap to pursuing a new job or a different career.

But there are good reasons to consider quitting and below are five common reasons why people decide to leave their jobs.

1.) You are fundamentally unhappy. People who enjoy their work have two basic measurements:  they are excited to go to work each morning and find their jobs challenging and fulfilling and when they leave at the end of the day they typically have a sense of accomplishment and look forward to the next day.  There’s a lot of things that go into being happy at your work: attitude, compensation, corporate culture, your job is exciting, you like your co-workers, the incentives and benefits are  terrific.

But if you truly agonize about having to go to work every day and the stress of your job is affecting your overall happiness, it’s probably time to start looking for another job.

2.) You aren’t making enough money. Money isn’t everything, but the reality is that a paycheck is one of our society’s greatest incentives for hard work.  So there’s two ways to measure whether you should quit because of money.  First, you are having a hard time paying your bills and simply can’t afford to continue working at your job.  Secondly, you honestly believe you are not being compensated for the value you bring to your organization and don’t foresee an opportunity for a raise or to be promoted.

3.) Your boss sucks. OK, maybe the chemistry just doesn’t work between the two of you.  But if you have tried everything to resolve the conflict and still don’t get along with the one person who is making decisions about promotions, raises, bonuses, vacation times, work assignments and office space, get out of there.  Saying that, it takes two to tango, so also take the time to do some personal introspection to figure out what happened and what you can do to avoid a situation like this in the future.

4.) The company is experiencing drastic business losses and rumors about its bankruptcy or failure are making you nervous. Measure this one with the possibility of a severance package in the event of layoffs, but you should at the very least start looking if every indicator points to your organization failing.

5.) Your values are at conflict with the mission of the organization or the way the organization is being run. It’s hard to be a productive member of a team if you don’t feel passionate about the mission of the organization.   The mission may have changed since you first started working there but if you are feeling a bit queasy about your company, it may be time to consider a change.  At the same time, if you believe your organization is being run unethically, you should consider leaving.

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