There has been many times in my life where I have felt like quitting my job. Sometimes I got frustrated by a boss who didn’t listen, or who asked me to do something that I didn’t agree with. Sometimes it was a corporate decision that I disagreed with. Sometimes rude customers pushed my buttons. Sometimes being short on sleep made me irritable and not willing to put up with office politics, lying, or impatience.

The advantage of the frustration and anger you feel is that it is easier to take action and quit because of the energy of those emotions. The disadvantage is that you might regret quitting. How are you going to pay your bills and your mortgage/rent? Do you want a positive reference from this company to help you get your next job?

I suggest that when you feel that frustration and anger, remove yourself from the situation and breathe deeply. If you can leave your workplace, it helps to go outside and yell to let off some steam. Going for a brisk walk in nature also helps. When you have calmed down, either the same day or  within the week, it is time to look at your work situation to see if it is the right place for you right now.

You can start by listing the answers to these questions:

  • What do you like about your current job?
  • What don’t you like about the job?
  • Are you still learning at this job?
  • Is this a job that is a good stepping stone to another job you’d like to do soon?
  • What would you like to be different?  A shorter commute?  A manager that appreciates you?  The independence of your own business so that you can set your own hours?  To be paid what you are worth?  To stop dealing with the public?  An environment that is less gossipy and more cooperative?  To feel like you are making a difference?
Discuss your answers with a friend, family member or career coach.  Look at options of changing departments, employers, careers, or just changing your perspective.  Is your current job bringing you closer or further away to living the values that are important to you?
Check with both your logical, analytical self and your intuitive side.  Your gut may tell you to quit even though your mother or spouse tells you that is a bad idea.  If you are in a good mood and feeling calm (not angry or fearful), trust your instincts.
If you decide to leave your current job, create a plan.  Can you afford to be out of work for several months while you find another job?  Start doing some networking, learning and preparing.  When you are ready, write a formal resignation letter and give at least two weeks’ notice.  Try to leave on good terms, so that management, co-workers and staff will have good memories of you.  Those connections may come in handy in the future, and even if they don’t, you’ll feel better if you’ve treated them as well as you could.