Sometimes our jobs keep us so busy that we never have time to pause and think about whether we are doing the right thing in the first place. Many graduates and people in the early stages of their careers go through this. And by the time they realise it’s the wrong job, it’s probably too difficult to start over. Here are some of the signs you should look out for to know that you are in the wrong job:

1) You get stressed out on Sunday nights because work starts tomorrow

People who love their jobs always look forward to the start of the work week. They might jokingly tell you “Oh no, it’s Monday”, but they actually don’t mind it at all. So for those who really feel awful that Monday is coming, you’re definitely in the wrong job, or at least, the wrong company.

2) You feel you need to complain every time you talk about your job

When chatting among family and friends, it’s difficult to avoid a conversation about your job and career because that’s the thing that takes up the most of your time. But if every time someone asks you about this, and you feel a strong need to complain about your job or your boss, you know you’re doing the wrong thing.

3) You seem to struggle at work when others find it easy

With most jobs, any skill can be trained, whether or not you are actually made for the job. As an example, a person who is not made to be an accountant could still go through his Chartered Accountancy training and successfully be a qualified accountant. The only difference is, as time goes by, a person who not made for the job will find that everyday seems to be a struggle, while his or her colleagues find it easier. So don’t fall into the trap of thinking the job is made for you just because you have successfully gone through a lot of early stage training. Ultimately, ask yourself if you can see yourself doing this long term and still be successful?

4) You’re not proud when you tell people what you do

When you meet someone new and they ask you about your job (and that’s such a common question), do you feel yourself swallowing your words because you’re not proud of what you do? If you’re not even proud of your job, the chances of you excelling at it would be very slim. And when you’re not excelling, you will continue to not be proud of your job, and the only answer is for you to try something new in order to escape this cycle.

5) You don’t have many friends at work

This is a bit tricky, because it may not be your job that’s the problem, but perhaps you are not a culture fit for your organisation. Ask yourself if you might enjoy what you do if you had different colleagues, or in a different company. Be honest with yourself and if you realise that you’re not fitting in because of performance issues, then perhaps a different type of job would suit you. But if it’s not the job, but your colleagues, that you struggle to fit in with, then you could try looking at a different employer.



Posted by Derek Toh

Derek is the founder and CEO of WOBB.CO. He was part of the pioneer batch for the Stanford-MaGIC Entrepreneurship Program, and is also a mentor for McKinsey & Company's Youth Leadership Academy. Derek is on a mission to revolutionise work culture in Asia. He cares about initiatives that improve education and the talent market. Derek is also a big fan of superhero movies, and has been told that he drinks too much coffee during the day.