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When The Need For Money and Sanity Collide

Written By Tiffany Hall

 

“In this economy, you’re lucky that you have a job”

“Most people hate their jobs. It’s called work for a reason.”

“But you have great benefits!

When deciding whether or not to leave my job, these were some of the responses I was met with.  I had only been working at my company for a little less than a year, but was finding the work-life balance to be non-existent. Spending nights and weekends on-call, and having to take work home with me was starting to wear on my mental health. It was time to make a change.

I was hesitant at first. My mother had just passed away and I had been trying to heed the advice of every article on grief that warned not to make any major life decisions in the first year after a loss. However, after talking with my partner and my therapist about it, I realized that the demands of my job were actually worsening my grief rather than helping me to heal.

I began applying for other jobs with the hopes of being able to find a position that would be less stressful and would allow me to properly separate my personal and professional life. I ended up interviewing for a job that would require me to take a pay cut, but would shorten my commute by 75% and allow me to work less strenuous hours. With less time spent at work, I’d have more time to do other things I’m passionate about. I decided to accept the position.

So, yes, I’m leaving my job to work a job that pays me much less, but allows me to care for myself so much more. Many of us struggle with the decision between working a soul-sucking job for the sake of income and wanting to quit to save our sanity. It is not an easy decision to make. However, while money is extremely important, a paycheck should not supersede your mental health.

If you’re struggling with a job that is stressing you out, consider the following:

  1. A Small Change Can Do You Good
    What is it about your job that you don’t like? If you’re bored and feel unchallenged, ask your supervisor for more responsibilities. If you’re feeling overworked, try not to take work home so that you can use your off-time to recharge. Sometimes making these little tweaks can make your job more bearable.
  2. Make Time for Fun
    Work is only one aspect of your life. Use your days off to do things that you enjoy. An after-work happy hour every once in a while can’t hurt either!
  3. If All Else Fails, Move On.
    If your job is so stressful that it’s making you sick or depressed, LEAVE. No amount of money is worth your sanity. It’s easier, of course, to have another job lined up before quitting, but sometimes this isn’t an option. Do what is best and healthiest for your situation.

In this economy, it is hard to give up a decent-paying job with benefits. However, the effects of job stress can cost you much more in the long run. Take care of yourself. I know I am!

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