Anxiety from changing jobs: how to cope and overcome


Fear of change is part of human nature, especially when it comes to your career. However, while a leap of faith into a new job is scary, the prospect of settling into an under-stimulating or unsatisfying position is at least as bad. Fortunately, anxiety from changing jobs is almost entirely in your head.

By facing our fears, we can overcome them. Here, we break down anxiety from changing jobs into its components, so that you can better understand the irrational worries that might be keeping you from a more fulfilling career.

Fear of the unknown

It is perhaps the most primal fear, but it’s also extremely unproductive in today’s society. In our highly dynamic world, fear of the unknown is a path to underachievement. For obvious reasons, entrepreneurs tend to be very knowledgeable about coping with and overcoming fear of the unknown in career decisions.

Getting comfortable

It can be alluring to stay put in a “good enough” job that doesn’t demand much of you. The problem is, not challenging yourself is pretty bad for you psychologically. Meeting new challenges and solving new problems is an important part of personal development, and it’s important to recognize that the instinct to get comfortable with “good enough” isn’t a particularly healthy one.

Fear of inadequacy

This is perhaps the most conscious reason people are reluctant to leave a stale job– even the most talented worker frets about not being good enough for a bigger-and-better position. But ponder this: if you were inadequate for a more serious job, you would not be experiencing anxiety as you would not be seriously considering a career upgrade. Feelings of inadequacy are often just unfounded manifestations of self-doubt, and there are ways to rise above them.

Job market pessimism

This concern hits especially hard for younger generations in the workforce, who have grown up dealing with an unpredictable economy and an unreliable job market. While it can be tempting to mope about adverse conditions for job-seekers rather than pushing through them, it’s important to remember that this kind of pessimism doesn’t help you at all. Regardless of your current situation, you are better off trying to stay positive about your career prospects, which might mean looking to upgrade your job.

Notice a pattern? When anxiety from changing jobs is dismantled into its root components, you see that most of this fear is irrational. We hope that any readers considering changing jobs are able to tune out these primitive fears and unlock their potential. Keep looking. Don’t settle.

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