Stop Feeling Guilty about Leaving Your Job

Tyrion Lannister Looking Sad

How we feel about our jobs can often change depending on the day, our mood, how busy it is and even if we’re hungry or have low blood sugar. The decision to quit our job is never an easy one. It can come with a lot of emotions, and guilt is right up there. There are many reasons for feeling guilty when the time comes to tell your boss that it’s time for you to leave and move on. But you should never, ever feel guilty about this. Read on to find out why you need to stop with the guilt immediately. It will be much better for you and for everyone around you.

No bad job is worth the regular salary

Okay, so making money on a regular basis is a pretty important part of life, and there’s just no getting around the fact that you need to receive a salary. There are bills to pay and you have to buy food in order to keep yourself fed. But if you are miserable every single day, you need to quit your job, and it’s that simple. If you’re the breadwinner in your household and your spouse and kids rely on you, you’re going to feel pretty guilty that you’re giving up your regular paycheck because you have to take care of them. But you don’t need to feel guilty, because of course you can find another job. You found this one, right? So of course it can happen again. And your kids and romantic partner only want what’s best for you and want you to be happy. It’s very rare that they would want you to stay in a situation that’s a bad fit for you just for their sake.

Jobs can suck for a number of reasons, but the main ones are a nasty boss who insults you and never seems to appreciate you, being overworked and doing a million jobs at once, and generally feeling bored and undervalued. If any of those describe you and how you’re feeling at your job, don’t think twice about the need to say goodbye. It’s okay, and you’ll be happier at your next position. Just remind yourself that money doesn’t always buy happiness, as the popular saying goes.

Your boss will understand

Some bosses are nightmares who yell and throw tantrums that remind you off a hungry toddler who wants some candy, rather than an intelligent grown-up capable of leading an entire company. But other bosses are amazing and can be a mentor figure to their employees. You will most likely feel guilty if you leave your job and your boss was this type of mentor to you and your career. But they will definitely understand, as long as you give them some logical reasons for your decision. Explain yourself and don’t leave them guessing as to why you’re making this decision. There’s no room for guilt here because if your manager was your mentor, they will want to see you succeed more than anyone else at the office. They won’t want you to stay miserable and they will want you to find a better position that will be a much better fit. As long as you don’t insult them or the company, you’ll be fine and the guilt can go away.

Your coworkers will live


Of course the people whom you’ve been sharing an office atmosphere with are going to miss you and be upset with your decision. But you can’t stay on their behalf. And you definitely can’t stay in a job that you hate and are unhappy with just because of your office BFF whom you share gossip and daily coffee breaks with. These people will be sad to see you go but they will definitely be able to survive without you. Life goes on and people leave companies all the time. It’s just a fact of the working life. You’re not the first person to leave the office environment and you definitely won’t be the last. As sad as it can seem to think about your coworkers whom you love, moving on and finding a new person to laugh with and work with, that’s just the price that you pay for deciding to leave. It’s not a bad thing -- it’s simply the way that things go.

You deserve to love your job

Your feelings of guilt may be super strong right now because you think that you should just hang in there and stick it out. You may ask yourself, why do you need to love what you do every day? Shouldn’t you just suck it up and be glad for the work, especially in this time of financial insecurity and a difficult job market? But that’s just not true. Every single person deserves to enjoy their position. It’s as simple as that. If you’re spending more days at the office than at home, why would you want to hate your job? That’s crazy.

You’re not letting anyone down

If you feel that you’re disappointing the people you work with because you’re all team players and you guys work together to create an amazing product, stop right now and take a step back. You’re just one piece of the puzzle. Of course you’re important because every employee is. But the company won’t fall apart without you, because guess what? You’re not the center of the universe. So chill out, calm down, and breathe easier.

No place in happy life decisions


Once you reframe your choice as a good, positive thing, guilt will have no place in your head anymore. You’re not losing a job and the best coworkers ever; you’re gaining a better situation and maybe even coworkers that you will get along with even better wherever you go next. You could even change industries and careers entirely and find out that you want to do something totally different. So why should you feel guilty for discovering what you truly are meant to do with your life? That’s crazy. You should be welcoming the future with open arms and you need to be excited for the next phase of your career. It’s going to rock, so get excited and stop with the guilt already. You’re only going to annoy everyone around you with your moaning, groaning and whining, and that’s definitely not the person that you want to be.

See also: How to Know When It’s Time to Leave Your Job

When you stop and really think about it, guilt is a totally useless emotion. It shouldn’t even exist because it stops you from moving forward and it prevents you from feeling the happiness and total excitement that you need to be experiencing as you transition from your old position to a new job or something completely different. If you’ve been experiencing crazy amounts of guilt over your recent choice to quit your job, stop right now. You don’t need to feel guilty at all because you need to find a fulfilling and satisfying career. No one wins if you hate your job, so just focus on closing this chapter and moving onto the next one that is hopefully much better.