Do you know what wanderlust is? It’s a really strong desire or call to travel. One who feels the call of wanderlust doesn’t sit still in one place too long. They need to go. Where they choose to go could be anywhere, but it’s a passion to get out there and travel. Do you think it can apply to jobs? Sometimes, I have such a deep yearning for a new job. I’m not talking about changing a long-time career or quitting my job when things get crappy. No, I mean a tug on my spirit to move on to the next thing out there for me in a work-related capacity, even if I’ve only been at the previous job for a short time. It’s more than not wanting to do a job I don’t like or a lack of commitment. Instead, I just have a strong desire to move on whether up or lateral, but usually to a different job field and workplace.
Do you ever feel like this? Do you ever just get a sense that you need to be somewhere else, whether it will be good for you or not? It’s really challenging because constantly switching jobs isn’t a professionally acceptable societal standard. For people who hold more than two jobs in a year, retail not included, it’s always assumed that they’ve done something wrong. It’s happened to me more than once. I was questioned, pitied, whispered about, and given the “side-eye” for this very thing. What a lot of people don’t know is that I always choose to move on.
Yes, I have been fired before, but it was the one and only time when I tried to work as a waitress in high school. That waitstaff life is not for me. I will be the first to admit. I chose to leave every other job I’ve ever had because I felt like I needed to. It wasn’t always because something was wrong or because I couldn’t do the job. It wasn’t because of hostile or untenable work environments or my lack of experience. Aside from my very brief stint at Perkins in high school, I have actually been a very model employee at all my other jobs. I fully believe that if someone were to ask my previous employers they would agree. I’m a rule follower and over-achiever – sue me!
No, I don’t usually do anything wrong that warrants having to use the line, “It was due to creative differences” in a job interview. I just can’t help but go. I like being somewhere different. I like learning new work skills. I like spending my workday switching things up. If you know me on a personal level, you’re probably wondering who the heck I am right now, lol! My personality screams dependable, predictable, comfortable, but my heart and my soul are more than that.
So, how do I handle this career wanderlust? More often than not, I give in to it. Even now, I like the job that I am at and I learn something different every other day, which keeps things from being boring. However, the feeling that I need to move on has already called to me. It’s especially hard this time around because I have financial and personal goals that require a deep level of stability. Sometimes goals like this really keep a person from moving on, and I know you know what I am talking about. Think about the mortgage, the children, the student loans, or the credit card debt you might have. Those are reasons enough to keep people from taking different jobs. I’m not even going to expand on the fear of the unknown that comes from giving up one job for another. If you want to read a little bit of my thoughts on that, do so here.
What if I didn’t give into the itch to switch jobs? Well, I probably would have felt supremely stuck. Or maybe, I would have already climbed the career ladder in a chosen field. No one knows, and I’ll never know, but I don’t let that hold me back. I have learned something new about myself and I’ve gained new skills in each job I’ve ever had. I’ve worked in retail, customer service, and food and beverage distribution – Charlotte Russe, Big Lots, Target/Starbucks, The Asbury Hotel, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield, and more. I’ve worked as an office assistant at Rider Financial Aid, a Requesting Manager at a law firm, and I am the Data Coordinator at my current job. I get around… in the respectable, professional sense. Personally, I think that is okay. I might always be that one person who switches jobs as frequently as I switch clothing. Who’s going to stop me? Will it always work out okay? What kind of life will I really have if I keep at this? How am I going to achieve any of my goals?
Maybe you’ve had a million and one jobs just like me, and I would love to hear about it. Maybe you’ve been stuck in one job and you’ve had the job switch itch that you’ve chosen to ignore. Everyone is different, but if you have that calling in your heart and it soothes your soul to move on and try as many jobs as you want then go for it! Not everyone is meant to stay in one place forever. I’m certainly not meant to do one thing for the rest of my life, and that is a fact.