Why do People Stay in Terrible Jobs?

Although workers change jobs more frequently today than in generations past, it can be quite nerve wracking to think about losing steady employment or to consider looking for a different job. Even if you hate your current line of work, are underemployed or find yourself in a negative office atmosphere, you may still come up with reasons why it’s better to remain where you are than to risk leaving. Job dissatisfaction is not a new occurrence, nor is it an uncommon one. There are numerous reasons why people stay in terrible jobs. Let’s take a look at some of the more common ones and ways you may be able to approach them differently.

Terrible Jobs

Hope That Things Will Get Better

Frequently, we convince ourselves to remain in an unsatisfying, or even harmful, work situation in the hopes that something will happen to change or improve our situation. Having hope is a good thing, but unrealistic hope usually is not. The chances that your horrible boss will suddenly be transferred out of state or that your boring position will somehow become stimulating and challenging are slim. Instead of just hoping that things will improve, it’s best to look for proactive ways to change your personal situation. Perhaps you could volunteer for a new committee if you’re feeling stagnant in your position or you could request a transfer to a different department in which the supervisor is more in line with your work philosophies.

Fear That Quitting Looks Bad

While it’s true that constant job hopping can trigger red flags to potential employers, changing positions occasionally is actually expected in today’s workforce. There is no magic number in terms of how long you should stay on the job before moving on. However, if you’ve given it a fair chance and tried to make adjustments, chances are good that you can safely look elsewhere. Besides, continuing to work at a job you hate will likely decrease your morale and confidence, making it even harder to get out there and look for something better.

Worry About Loss of Health Insurance

Yes, having health insurance is a benefit that is often worth a bit of sacrifice. If your job were mostly pleasant and only stressful on occasion, it would make sense to chalk things up to breaking even. But if your job is causing you so much stress or emotional upheaval that your health suffers, it would seem rather ironic to remain. The health risks associated with job stress are real, and they are an important factor to bear in mind. Take time to weigh the pros and cons related to your current situation, and remember that the Affordable Care Act may provide you with options when it comes to obtaining decent insurance at a fair price.

Dependence on a Certain Lifestyle

Sometimes the reason people stay in a job they hate is simply because they have become dependent upon the lifestyle that particular job’s salary has afforded them. They say money isn’t everything, but talk is cheap when it comes to the idea of leaving your comfortable lifestyle. Again, this is a situation in which you must take a look at the pros and the cons. What possibilities await you if you take the risk of leaving? If there is a good chance you’ll be happier in a different position and still be able to maintain the necessities in life, it may be worth the economic sacrifice to take that leap. On the other hand, jumping without a plan could be quite damaging. It’s okay to take the time needed to assess your situation and to plan accordingly.

Lack of Self-Confidence

Low self-esteem is one of the biggest reasons many people stay in terrible jobs. It’s easy to fall into a rut. Perhaps negative co-workers or overbearing family members have even convinced you as much. This is where some tough self-talk needs to come into play. It’s time to consider the harsh reality of remaining where you are out of fear. Think about what life will be like and the kinds of things you may be missing if you allow your self-doubt to prevail. Another way to reframe your thinking is to recall past successes and the steps you took to achieve them. Doing so can remind you of your capabilities.

If you’re feeling stuck in a job you hate, there are options. Feel free to fill up our contact form or call us at 1-800-354-1254 and a Brighton College representative to learn about our programs and the steps you can take to enroll on a new career path.