Twelve Telltale Signs it’s Time to Create an Exit Strategy For Quitting Your Soul-Sapping Job


Article by Sophia Marsh-Ochsner
Photo Credit: Dasha & Mari
Magazine: Issue #29

Signs it’s Time to Create an Exit Strategy For Quitting Your Soul-Sapping Job

Signs it’s Time to Create an Exit Strategy For Quitting Your Soul-Sapping Job

When it comes to climbing the success ladder, I’ve worn all the labels. Corporate careerist? Yep. Wantrapreneur? Check. Entrepreneurial small-business owner? Absolutely – in fact, still going strong. So believe me when I say with wholehearted empathy that I’ve walked many-a-mile in your Louboutin shoes.  

So let’s get real. During my nine-plus career lives, I’ve seen my share of flashing red lights telling me it was time to leave the latest “dream job” that turned sour. But there were other times when I missed the career forest for the trees entirely, languishing in a no-future position far longer than I want to admit. If only I had learned to recognize these emergency signals, I could have circumvented some of the self-inflicted drama and dove head first into my destined sweet spot years earlier.  

Save yourself the heartache and learn from my good (and not-so-good) experience. Here are 12 signs that your job or business isn’t a good fit or you have outgrown your career aspirations. Warning: If you identify with three or more on the checklist, or find yourself virtually high five-ing me and hollering, “Yes, me too!” then take it as a cue to begin creating your exit strategy NOW versus someday. 

1| You’ve lost that loving feeling. You can’t seem to muster up the passion or motivation you once had for your job or profession  

2| Your self-esteem and confidence are slowly spiraling down. The stress and anxiety are now affecting your physical and mental health and impacting your relationships. 

3| Energy Leaks. You’re beginning to lack the internal stamina to keep doing what you’re doing. Instead, your job is one big energy drain. 

4| Who am I? You find yourself asking existential questions like why am I here, what’s it all about, what’s wrong with me, why can’t I be happy, what’s my damn purpose?

5| If only… Quitting your job feels like walking the proverbial plank but you can’t seem to muster the courage of Jack Sparrow to jump ship. 

6| Misery loves company. You whine and gripe to your loved ones and eventually to anyone who will listen about how much you hate your life (hint...probably because you spend two thirds of it at your job).  

7| Truth or Dare. On your drive into work you imagine walking into your boss’ office and throwing down the “I-quit-this-soul-sucking-job” gauntlet. 

8| Personal vices. You use distractions (alcohol, food, shopping...pick your poison) and personal sick days to try to recalibrate and come up for air, so you can suck it up and do it again next week. 


9| Excuses, excuses, excuses. You find yourself saying, “I would love to quit but (fill in the excuses blank...”I need the money honey, now’s not the right time, I’m not really ready, I can do this another year” (yeah right).

10| Sunday Night Sadness & Monday Morning Blues. Your Sunday night pit in the stomach transitions into Monday morning madness. You know you’re on the “wash, rinse and repeat” career spin cycle but don’t know how to plan your great escape.

11| Reality dawns. The excruciating fear of never reaching your potential, fulfilling your purpose and living out yours passion becomes intolerable for your soul to bare. 

12| No self-expression = expect depression. Abraham Maslow, the American psychologist identified five critical human needs that sustain and motivate human behavior. It’s no surprise that self-fulfillment and realizing one’s potential ranks high up on the totem pole. However, Gallup polls show that 70% of Americans hate their stinkin’ jobs. So it doesn’t take a genius to see that there may be some correlation with the rampant rise of depression and anxiety in our society, given that most of us are walking around with a prolonged sense of hopelessness.   

So whether you are thirty, forty or fifty-something, the midlife career crisis happens to almost everyone. When the lack of fulfillment finally becomes too much to bear, it’s time to jump or no-jump...take flight or deal or no get my drift. 

While success is created in the mind, happiness is cultivated in the soul. Your mind can only fool you for so long but your soul knows better. So thank your soul for giving you those pesky cues and pointing you in the direction of truth. Jumping into uncertainty is far better than dying a slow death with your song unsung.

Believe me, I know. I “discovered” the disconnect early enough to do something about it.

It’s a Sign is a compilation of self-improvement articles written by entrepreneurs seeking to bring holistic solutions to everyday problems. Read more articles from this feature.

Sophia is a UK-born, LA-based empowerment coach, chief rally crier and conscious entrepreneur that inspires anew. She speaks on the importance of gaining clarity, cultivating confidence, and creating a soulfully aligned life and purpose. 

She now supports women globally to discover their destined sweet spot in life and business through her Milk & Honey™ Method. This process supports women at pivotal points in their life and career to make powerful transitions by charting soulfully aligned careers and exit strategies. Uncertain about your next career or business step? Email  to get your FREE Milk and Honey™ Exit & Encore Roadmap, a mindful tool to help you navigate your next professional leap.

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