Four Steps to Take If You Hate Your Job

Financially speaking, your career is your biggest asset and you need to do all you can to maximize the financial benefits from it. Furthermore, most people also want to enjoy what they do for a living since a good part of their lives is lived at work. So if you’re in a dead-end position or if you really hate what you’re doing, Yahoo offers some concrete steps you can take to make a change:

Step 1: Assess your situation, review your strengths, and dig in your heels.
Step 2: Explore your options, set goals, and make plans to develop yourself to fit your new career path.
Step 3: Acquire new skills, like by returning to school and/or volunteering.
Step 4: Do something you enjoy.

If you’re in an unrewarding, low-paying position, what’s stopping you from taking action? Resolve not to become complacent about the situation. Start developing your strategy towards taking the next step in your career.

I Hate My Job — Now What? [Yahoo HotJobs]



Edit Your Comment

  1. enm4r says:

    Step 4: Do something you enjoy.

    I’ve never read Yahoo HotJobs, but this is pretty much the typical advice I’d expect to read if I did go there.

  2. Sucko-T says:

    Here’s a tip: Don’t use Yahoo hotjobs, Monster or Career Builder. They just change the date on their jobs so they can trick people into believing that they actually have new jobs. Use Craigslist or a local job board that actually gets updated.

  3. B says:

    Which step is stabbing your co-worker with the scissors? I suppose it comes after they took away the red swingline stapler.

  4. peggyhill says:

    @B: That or burning the place down.

  5. morydd says:

    What do you do with an unrewarding high-paying position. The so-called “Golden Handcuffs”. I’ve got great benefits and and 401k in an industry where such things are very very rare. However, I have zero job satisfaction and zero potential for advancement. What next?

  6. Chryss says:

    Another reason to always try to have “FU” money in the bank. I like my job, but just 9 months ago I was in a position that was so stressful I was throwing up before coming to work every day. I was sending out CVs like mad, but there was a hiring delay…fortunately a freelance job came in, I got FU money, I gave notice and temped until I was in my current gig.

    I also swore I was never, ever, ever going to find myself in that situation again. Ever. I still have nightmares about my previous job.

  7. castlecraver says:

    Step 1: Cut a hole in a box…

  8. topgun says:

    Gee I was hoping for something a bit more insightful like how to get the goods on your boss, or other ways for the company to pay big dollars for you to go away. This was no-duh, no-brainer stuff.

  9. SOhp101 says:

    Thank you, Captain Obvious!

    @morydd: Life’s full of trade offs. Unless you’re willing to potentially give up those benefits and work for a competitor (who might pay you more if you use that as leverage), it sounds like you’re stuck. Good luck.

  10. Trai_Dep says:

    Another reason to avoid Yahoo hotjobs, Monster or Career Builder like the plague: they seek out (or allow un-vetted – same thing) “jobs” from those sleazy multi-level marketing hacks. Last time I looked, there were twenty real jobs and somewhere around 130 make $30k/wk – no experience! – jobs: ask me HOW!! ones.

    Until they realize that jobseekers are ALSO a market they need to serve, they’re beneath contempt and deserve to be avoided.

    Not that these scammers shouldn’t be allowed to post jobs (free country) but job categories should be strictly enforced, then banned when they violate them.

    Until then, avoid Yahoo hotjobs, Monster and Career Builder.

  11. Reg says:

    What about branching out with some part time consulting? Nothing boosts the ego like being appreciated for your expertise.

  12. bohemian says:

    You should have that FU money in case something else happens too. Companies close, surprise let go the entire department many times without warning. Then there are those situations where you get in an accident or fall ill. Things like disability insurance, workers comp or even car accidents can take months to years to finally settle. You could potentially not see money for years.

    Our FU money saved our bacon. My S.O. was not expecting the company he worked for to suddenly quit doing business in the state we worked in with absolutely no notice.

    Keep some FU money. If management starts behaving strangely or is secretive start looking at the advice articles on how to deal with a merger or layoff because that is probably what is coming. Keep your resume terminally active and updated, always be looking even if your not seriously interested in changing jobs.

  13. DeliBoy says:

    @strum40: Actually, a previous and my current job were via Monster, so call me a convert. Seekers just need to apply common sense to the postings. There are a lot of MLM schemes, and the adage about things being too good to be true applies in spades here. Know your industry and do your research.

    Quiting the shite job I had for 18 months was a 9 month process, but it was definitely worth it. My process was:

    1. Read the writing on the wall: there is no future and you need to get the f*%$ out.
    2. Apply elsewhere. Tell no one inside the organization. No one!
    3. Bide your time. Do not quit your job without having another one (learned that the hard way once). Tell yourself that things will get better someday. As hard as it is, remain professional and discrete.
    4. Repeat 2 – 3 ad nauseum. Vent to family & friends about the Michigan job market. Curse employers that send your applications into a black hole.
    5. Celebrate the day you get your ideal position and never take it for granted.

  14. Pelagius says:

    @trai_dep: Or the “Exciting International Opportunities!” jobs that turn out to be recruitment ads for the Navy…

  15. JuliaD says:

    Here is some practical advice for those of us who have decent management. Most of us used to enjoy our jobs until it slowly mutated into the soul-eating hell that it is now. Identify the parts that you hate and figure out what you would rather be doing. Schedule some time with your boss and tell them that you are quitting (and mean it!) unless they can figure out some way to help you eliminate the suck and get you performing more things that you would rather be doing. I know this isn’t as dramatic as changing companies but yes, it worked for me. It can work for you.

  16. infmom says:

    @topgun: We’ve done both of those in this household and I can tell you that neither is all it’s cracked up to be. My husband got decent money as a golden handshake and I got the civil service commission to validate most of the worst stuff about my former boss–in writing–but he was still out of work for months and my former boss is right where she always was and I took early retirement.

  17. “Step 4: Do something you enjoy.”
    Genius. Thanks again Yahoo.

  18. Trackback says:

    Earlier today, I wrote Four Steps to Take If You Hate Your Job for The Consumerist. The post dealt with how to get out of a job that was unrewarding or low-paying.

  19. dieZukunft says:

    More vague and worthless advice from yahoo. This article appeared the same day Yahoo also told us to “stay up later than your man, and play online! He’ll be jealous and want you more!”. W. T. F.????

    Thanks Yahoo. I might have a heathly dislike for my job, but this craploa is of no help…..

  20. Spaceboy says:

    I really feel the need to step in the defense of hotjobs and monster.
    In the past three weeks I got interviews for one position through each, and I hope for more. I have evry specific qualifications and I am looking in a very small geographical area, so I think both services are doing an excellent job of finding me opportunities, spam notwithstanding.

  21. alpha says:

    let’s see…

    Step 1: Realize you hate your job and may not be “qualified” to do anything better

    Step 2: Realize that corporate life sucks and you’re too afraid to do anything else

    Step 3: Think about going back to school, but realize that without a plan (and probably even with a plan…) you’ll just end up with student loan debt and still no closer to something worthwhile

    Step 4: Start using cliches like “Do something you enjoy” to make it sound like everyone is dumb for not having a job that they like because OBVIOUSLY it’s as easy as “doing what you enjoy”

    Step 5: Stop reading re-hashed, un-imaginative step-by-step article from people that are probably written by people just as un-satisfied as you are. Win the lottery so you can quit your job and waste away watching cable television all day.

    Yeah that sounds about right.

  22. BowlingForDollars says:

    @MoryDD: I just quit a 6 figure job in April. I saw the writing on the wall about a year ago, so I started banking as much money as I could. I now have enough cash to live for at least two years. I just started taking freelance jobs, I work in a t-shirt and shorts, make conference calls from my home office, and only work with people I like. It doesn’t get much better than this.

    The thing is, you get to a point where you feel like you won’t find anything better. I certainly felt that way. Trust me, I thought long and hard before I left, but my mental health is better (For the first time in my life, I had to see a therapist who promptly sent me to a psychiatrist – that’s how bad it had gotten by the end of my old job) and I actually enjoy what I am doing again. Jump and the net will appear.

  23. acambras says:


    Yeah, you know it’s probably time to get out when the psychiatrist takes out his prescription pad and instead of writing you a scrip for antidepressants, he writes “QUIT YOUR JOB.”

  24. Transient says:

    @alpha: No kidding. Despite being drastically more capable than your crap job might allow you to show, arbitrary qualifications that have little to no real-world relevance for higher-than-crap positions keep the roadblocks in place.

  25. mrearly2 says:

    @morydd: Stick it out for as long as you can, then pull out the scissors.