It’s scary to leave a comfortable job. I definitely get it.
But I’d also argue the most dangerous job you can have in your 20s is a comfortable one.
Comfortable is a quicksand — the job you never wanted becoming the job you can’t escape.
Worse than no-job, frustrating job or a demanding job, is a job that demands nothing. Like taking basket weaving your senior year. Sure you’ll get an easy A, but what did you lose in return?
Sure, it is scary to make a change. It’s scary to leave a comfortable job. But there is a stark cost for time wasted on comfortable.
Because you don’t grow with comfortable. You don’t learn. You don’t refine who you are or what you’re capable of.
No, comfortable is the leading cause for R.E.A.S – Rapidly Expanding Ass Syndrome. Your body, mind, and soul turning to goo. Because challenges refine. Remove challenges, remove growth.
The crux of your 20s is not how much you make, but how much you learn, grow, and change. Those of us who refuse to change, as Professor Robert Quinn writes in Deep Change, will enter into a “slow death”. Before comfortable kills you, here are three signs it’s time to escape.
3 Signs Your Job is Too Comfortable (and it’s time to leave)
1. Culture of Complacency
Need to know if your office suffers from complacency? Pretty simple. How are new ideas received? Are they explored or instantly exploded with a shotgun of “that’s not possible.”
Are the unspoken rules of the office to keep your mouth shut and not rock the boat?
Are you allowed to tackle projects outside your “job description?”
Does your boss want to work there? Does your boss’s boss want to be there?
Complacency is a disease. Extremely contagious. Easily passed from one employee to another.
If your office permeates with a culture of complacency, especially from the top down – game over. Pack your bags. Time to leave.
I’m serious as a heart attack.
Because you, starry-eyed twentysomething, who comes in with new energy and ideas will be crushed over and over by tsunami waves of complacency. Until you shut your mouth, settle in, and catch the disease yourself.
In a culture of complacency there is a sick, perverted love affair with status-quo. And honestly, you’re probably not going to change it.
2. You Feel Drained By Doing Nothing
If you come home absolutely drained from work. If you need to watch 2-4 hours of TV a night to escape. Then you think back to your day and realize you really did nothing at work. You’re really just drained because your mind wasn’t stimulated.
You’re drained because you spread one hour of actual work over a span of eight.
Being drained by comfortable is a scary way to start living. Because it’s incredibly hard to escape. Like a carousel ride that never stops spinning. Jump and roll. Now.
3. “We Want to Promote You” is the Phrase you Fear Most.
If the idea of being promoted makes you more nauseous than the time you ate cotton candy and three churros before jumping on the spinning teacups ride, then why are you freaking working there? Simple as that. I can hear lots of “but Paul you don’t understand…”
No, I do understand. Comfortable is your drug. I’m checking you into a clinic.
Comfortable Will Kill You
Comfortable is like smoking — addictive and killing you with every puff. Quit before it’s too late.
What do you think — is a comfortable job as dangerous as I’ve made it out to be?