To stay or not to stay. Is that the question?
Oftentimes professionals fall into the trap of viewing finding a new job as an all-or-nothing decision: “Either I stick with the status quo, or I try for something better. What to do?”
Sadly, framing the question in this way leads to indecision that can drag on months or even years, because we’re searching for perfect clarity (or waiting for a perfect gig to fall in our lap) before we take action.
But you can’t think or wait your way out of career indecision. It just doesn’t work. It takes more action -- and less thinking -- to either land that next job or come to a place of peace in your current one.
What you should be asking yourself is, “What small action could I take today to move my career in the right direction?”
Because every step you take, no matter how small, leads to new learning, inertia and insight into what you should do next.
In fact, simply starting your search can be the best way to figure out whether it’s time to leave your current gig -- and it carries tremendous personal benefits:
- I mean serious skills like strategic networking, turning contacts into advocates, storytelling, and negotiating.
- I mean self awareness like discerning your core values, which skills you want to develop further, and where you want your career to lead.
- I mean relationship building with people who will enrich your career and advocate for your success in the hiring process.
The job search doesn't have to be some black hole of doom that may or may not result in a better job. Rather, it can be a series of steps that make you a stronger professional and a stronger version of yourself.
That stronger version of yourself may very well land your dream job. Or, at the very least, you’ll gather enough concrete information to put your existential angst to rest and affirm that staying in your current job is the best possible decision (for now).
No matter your situation, there’s almost no excuse not to job search next year, and to make it one of your NYR staples.