11 telltale signs you should quit your job and do what you really love

Some people hang on to a job they hate because the money is "too good." Some people hang on to a job they hate because the "prestige" of the title makes it too hard on their egos to quit.

And some hang on to a job they hate because they're afraid to start their own business --which to me is the worst reason of all. Keep in mind there are compelling reasons to hang on to your full-time job as long as you can while you get your startup going, which from an administrative standpoint is really easy: you can set up a new business in three or four hours.

If you're in a job you hate, I have four words for you: Life is too short.

Life is too short to go home every day feeling unfulfilled. Life is too short to work for a terrible boss. Life is too short to go home every day feeling taken for granted, feeling taken less than seriously, or feeling taken advantage of.

Life is too short to not be as professionally fulfilled -- and happy -- as you can possibly be. Say your adult child called and said, "I hate my job. I'm bored, frustrated, and feel like I'm going nowhere." Wouldn't you tell your son or daughter to look for another job?

Of course you would -- so shouldn't you follow the same advice?

And don't just take my word for it. One of the worst things you an do is fall prey to the myth of persistence. Instead of feeling you have to hang in there, Mastering the Art of Quitting says that sometimes the best thing you can do is have the courage to (gracefully) leave a job that doesn't make you happy.

So if any of the following applies to you, its time to stop being miserable and start looking for something better:

1. Your boss manages his boss, not you.

You know the type: As a leader, she should focus her time and attention on her direct reports, but she spends all her time "following" her boss. It seems like your only job is to contribute to the greater glory -- and advancement -- of your boss.

A great boss knows that if their team succeeds -- and each individual on that team succeeds -- then they will succeed too.

Life's too short to spend your time developing your boss's career at the expense of your own.

2. Your ideas are disregarded or even ignored.

Everyone has ideas. And everyone loves when his or her ideas are taken seriously -- and implemented. The feeling that you've contributed in a special way is incredibly gratifying.

But when your boss or company shoots down or even laughs at your ideas, it's not only insulting, it's de-motivating. And pretty soon you stop caring.

Life's too short to not care.

3. You get criticized in public.

We all need constructive feedback. We all need a little nudge. We all need to be told when we can do something better -- and how to do it better.

But we need to be told those things in private.

Life's too short to walk around waiting for the next time you'll be criticized--and even humiliated -- in front of other people.

4. No one ever says, "Thanks."

Everyone also needs praise. We all need to know when we do something well (and everyone, even a poor performer, does some things well).

Life's too short not to be recognized for the contributions you make.

5. You feel like you have no purpose.

Everyone likes to feel a part of something bigger. Everyone likes to feel they have an impact not just on results, but also on the lives of other people.

Life's too short to go home every day feeling like you've worked... but you haven't accomplished anything meaningful.

6. You feel like a number.

Everyone is replaceable. Everyone, ultimately, works for a paycheck. But people also want to work for more than a paycheck. They want to work with people they respect and admire, and they want to be respected and admired in return.

If your boss doesn't occasionally stop for a quick discussion about family, an informal conversation to see if you need any help, or simply to say a kind word, then you're just a cog in a larger machine.

Life's too short to only be a cog in a larger machine.

7. You aren't even a tiny bit excited to go to work.

Every job has its downsides. (I'm willing to bet even Richard Branson has to do a few things he doesn't enjoy -- like near-death ballooning experiences.) But every job should also have some fun moments. Or exciting moments. Or challenging moments. Or some aspect that makes you think, "I'm looking forward to doing that."

Life's too short to spend only looking forward to quitting time.

8. You don't see a better future.

Every job should lead to something: hopefully a promotion, but if not, the opportunity to take on additional responsibilities, learn new things, tackle new challenges. Tomorrow should have the potential to be different -- in a good way -- from today.

A decent boss works to improve the company's future. A good boss works to improve her employees' futures, too, even if -- especially if -- that might mean some of those employees will eventually move on to bigger and better things.

Life's too short to live without hope.

9. No one shares your dreams.

Countless companies were started by two or more people who at one time worked together and realized they had complementary skills--and realized they wanted to carve out a new future together.

If you plan to be an entrepreneur, working for a big company first is one of the best things you can do: It's a risk-free environment where you can meet future colleagues and co-founders. Pick a dozen companies at random and you'll find at least a few that were founded by aspiring entrepreneurs who met as co-workers and went on to launch an awesome business together.

Life's too short to spend working with people who don't share your hopes, dreams, and passions.

10. You're convinced you don't have other options.

That's the best reason of all to quit your job. I know what you're thinking: "I make too much in my current job; I'll never find something comparable." Or, "There just aren't any jobs where I live." Or, "I've put too much time into this company (or career or industry)."

Or, "I don't have what it takes to start my own business."

All those things are true -- if you let them be true.

You can do something else. You can do lots of something "elses."

You just have to believe -- and trust that your creativity, perseverance, and effort will take you to new, happier, and more fulfilling places. Thousands of people start their own businesses ever year. The only difference between you and them? They decided to take the chance. They decided to bet on themselves.

They decided that life's too short to just stay where they are instead of doing everything possible to live a better life.

11. You're tired of someone else limiting your future.

Work for a salary and no matter how well you perform, you can only make that salary. Work for someone else and you can only earn what it's decided you're "worth."

Work for yourself and your earnings are only limited by your creativity, drive, perseverance, and talent.

Money isn't everything -- but if you have to work, don't you want that work to pay off to the greatest extent possible? Life's too short to have your financial future determined by other people.

Go out and find out what you're really worth--both financially and in your ability to make a difference in other people's lives.

RELATED: The 20 best US cities for finding a job in 2017

The 20 best US cities for finding a job in 2017
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The 20 best US cities for finding a job in 2017

20. San Jose, California

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 72

Employment growth: 2.19%

Median annual household income: $53,915

While San Jose has some of the least affordable housing, its younger residents have some of the lowest annual transportation costs and highest monthly median starting salaries to make up for it.

Photo credit: Getty

19. Overland Park, Kansas

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 25

Employment growth: 0.14%

Median annual household income: $77,006

With a low number of employed residents living below the poverty line and a high number of them having health benefits, Overland Park ranks No. 19 overall.

Photo credit: Getty

18. Gilbert, Arizona

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 83

Employment growth: -3.30%

Median annual household income: $55,211

Gilbert ranks highly for safety (No. 1), employee benefits (No. 3), and housing affordability (No.5).

Photo credit: Getty

17. Garland, Texas

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 80

Employment growth: 3.52%

Median annual household income: $52,022

Almost half of the persons with disabilities in Garland are employed, earning it the No. 3 spot for "disability friendliness of employers." The Texas city is also the eighth best in terms of housing affordability and median annual household income.

Photo credit: Getty

16. Minneapolis, Minnesota

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 10

Employment growth: 1.08%

Median annual household income: $47,579

Minneapolis will appeal to both the single job-seeker and the job-seeker with family ties, ranking No. 17 for both. The Minnesota city also boasts the eighth-lowest unemployment rate.

Photo credit: Getty

15. Fort Wayne, Indiana

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 59

Employment growth: 5.27%

Median annual household income: $50,782

Fort Wayne's bright spots: housing affordability and employment growth. It ranked No. 1 and No. 3 in those categories, respectively.

Photo credit: Getty

14. Fort Lauderdale, Florida

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 12

Employment growth: -1.16%

Median annual household income: $44,464

Despite being in the red in terms of employment growth, this coastal city earns its spot on the list with its access to internships and bright economic outlook, which places it at No. 2 in the latter category.

Photo credit: Getty

13. Honolulu, Hawaii

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 65

Employment growth: 0.21%

Median annual household income: $32,647

The capital of Hawaii earns the No. 1 spot for employment outlook, based on the Manpower Group Outlook survey, which asks 11,000 American hiring managers about their hiring plans for the quarter. Most of its employed inhabitants have private health insurance, earning it a No. 5 spot for benefits.

Photo credit: Getty

12. Miami, Florida

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 13

Employment growth: 0.37%

Median annual household income: $27,650

What Miami lacks in average earnings it makes up for with access to internships and employment outlook, earning No. 1 and No. 2 spots in these respective categories.

Photo credit: Getty

11. Peoria, Illinois

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 92

Employment growth: 3.50%

Median annual income: $63,376

With Peoria's No. 7 ranking for median annual household income, it's easy to understand why the Illinois city also sees the seventh-smallest percentage of employed residents who live under the poverty line (4.3%).

Photo credit: Getty

10. Raleigh, North Carolina

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 34

Employment growth: 0.92%

Median annual household income: $61,213

Raleigh has the second-best employment outlook and the eleventh-best job security and median annual household income.

Photo credit: Getty

9. Tempe, Arizona

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 32

Employment growth: 2.84%

Median annual household income: $51,107

Coming in at No. 7 for workplace accessibility, Tempe offers a number of jobs accessible by a 30-minute transit ride. It's unsurprising, then, that its dwellers spend on average only eight hours a day working and commuting, earning it a No. 10 spot in the "Working and Commuting Time" category.

Photo credit: Getty

8. Salt Lake City, Utah

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 2

Employment growth: 2.89%

Median annual household income: $49,007

Ranking No. 2 for job opportunities and No. 7 for industry variety and low unemployment, Salt Lake City is a great place for today's job-seekers, according to WalletHub.

Photo credit: Getty

7. Chandler, Arizona

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 66

Employment growth: -0.02%

Median annual household income: $75,803

Chandler ranks fifth in the "median annual household income" and has near the lowest number of employed residents living under the poverty line.

Photo credit: Getty

6. Rancho Cucamonga, California

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 89

Employment growth: 5.76%

Median annual household income: $57,758

Despite its middling amount of job opportunities, this "sandy place" has the greatest annual job growth and a very low underemployment rate.

Photo credit: Getty

5. San Francisco, California

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 19

Employment growth: 2.43%

Median annual household income: $46,085

San Francisco may not offer the most affordable housing or the shortest workday, but it does rank No. 1 for low transportation costs and No. 7 for singles on WalletHub.

Photo credit: Getty

4. Sioux Falls, South Dakota

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 27

Employment growth: 1.58%

Median annual household income: $56,143

Sioux Falls has the lowest unemployment rate among all cities analyzed by WalletHub and is the fourth-best place for families, helping it land the No. 4 spot overall.

Photo credit: Getty

3. Orlando, Florida

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 1

Employment growth: -1.27%

Median annual household income: $43,094

With plenty of singles, access to internships, and the most job opportunities, Orlando is a great place for young professionals to search for jobs.

Photo credit: Geetty

2. Plano, Texas

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 29

Employment growth: -0.11%

Median annual household income: $83,128

Plano may be in the red in terms of employment growth, but this Texas town ranks No. 1 for the number of full-time employees compared to part-time, No. 3 for disability-friendliness of employers as well as for housing affordability, and No. 3 for families.

Photo credit: Getty

1. Scottsdale, Arizona

No. of job opportunities rank (out of 150): 22

Employment growth: 3.29%

Median annual household income: $76,421

Boasting some of the highest median annual household income numbers and best employee benefits, Scottsdale comes in at No. 1, according to WalletHub. Its access to internships and low transportation costs also helped this Arizona city land the top spot.

Photo credit: Getty


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