If you’re feeling guilty about leaving a job this is perfectly normal, especially if you’ve been there a while and enjoyed your role.
But you really shouldn’t feel guilty, no matter what circumstances you’re leaving under!
You have to make the best decisions for your personal and professional development, it’s as simple as that.
To help lessen the guilt you’re feeling, here are 10 reasons why you shouldn’t feel guilty about leaving your job:
Feeling Guilty About Leaving a Job? 10 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t!
1. You Have to Make the Best Decisions for Your Own Development
No matter how bad you feel about leaving your job, looking forward to the future and your own professional development is way more important.
You need to make the decisions that are best for you, it’s as simple as that.
Working for a company is just business, if you can leave and get paid more or have better opportunities to further your career you’d be crazy not to take it!
Related – Have mixed feelings about leaving your job? Here’s what I did.
2. You Don’t Owe Your Job Anything More than You’ve Given
There is often a feeling that you ‘owe’ something to your job, coworkers, or boss when you want to leave.
But this couldn’t be further from the truth!
You don’t owe anyone anything more than what you’ve already given them.
You’ve worked hard and been loyal, it’s now time to move on if you’ve found a better opportunity.
Feeling guilty about leaving is natural, especially if you’ve made some awesome friends and loved your job, but don’t let these feelings stop you from moving on.
3. Employment Is a Business Agreement, It’s Not Personal
It’s easy to forget that employment is a business agreement between an employer and employee as emotions start to come into play.
This means that it’s not personal, if you want to leave then you can without feeling guilty.
Your boss may be upset, but they’ll get over it quickly when they realize there are plenty of other people out there who would love to have your position.
I’m sure you are awesome at your job, but there are other people out there who can fill your shoes.
4. They Wouldn’t Hesitate to Fire You if It Made Sense
This reason is a tough one to hear, but it’s the truth.
Your boss or company wouldn’t hesitate to fire you if it made sense for them, so why should you feel guilty about leaving?
It’s not personal, it’s just business.
I know it might not feel like it if you’re part of a family at work, but if things aren’t going well financially you’d be let go.
5. They’ll Do Just Fine Without You
This is another reason that’s hard for a lot of people to take, but honestly, it’s just your ego making you feel like you’re indispensable.
The fact is, your company will do just fine without you.
There may be a period of adjustment as they find someone to fill your shoes, but they’ll get there.
Something one of my first managers ever told me was, “No one is irreplaceable!” and it’s true.
You’re not leaving your company in the lurch or causing them difficulties by leaving, that’s what a notice period is for, so they can find someone to replace you before you leave.
6. Your Coworkers Will Not Be Disappointed, They’ll Be Happy for You
You may be worried about what your coworkers will think when you give notice, but the fact is they’ll probably be happy for you.
If any of them are not happy for you, that just shows you that they’re not real friends and they’re either jealous or just hating on the fact that you’re moving on to better things and they’re not.
Remember, most of your coworkers are not your friends unless you hang out with them outside of work, they’re just people you work with.
So don’t feel guilty about leaving them behind, maybe you’ll even inspire someone to find themselves a better job and follow in your footsteps!
7. You’ll Resent It if You Stay out Of Guilt
While it’s hard not to feel guilty for leaving your job, you need to think about the fact that if you did stay you’ll certainly regret it.
It’s not worth it to stay somewhere out of guilt, you’ll just end up resenting your employer and the situation.
You need to do what’s best for you and your career, not what’s best for your employer.
If they can’t see that and they make you feel bad for leaving then it’s their loss, not yours.
8. There Is Never a Perfect Time to Leave (Other than Now!)
There is never a perfect time to leave a job, you’re always going to feel like you’re letting them down to some extent.
The fact of the matter is that it will only get more difficult to leave the longer you wait and if there is a perfect time it’s always going to be right now!
Don’t put off making a decision because you’re worried about the timing, these are doubts creeping in that will never go away.
9. The Guilt Will Go Away, I Promise
The main thing to remember is that the guilt you’re feeling right now is only temporary.
I promise it will go away, especially once you start your new job and you realize that you made the right decision.
You’ll look back on this time and wonder why you ever felt guilty in the first place, I can guarantee it!
You’re not doing anything wrong, you’re just moving on to better things.
10. It’s Natural to Be Scared of Change, But Change Means Growth!
It’s human nature to be afraid of change, and this is often what makes us feel guilty for doing something that’s out of the norm or out of our comfort zone.
But change is good!
It means you’re growing and moving forward in your life and career.
Don’t be afraid of change, it’s what will help you progress and become the best version of yourself.
So, there you go – no matter how guilty you feel for leaving your job the reasons to leave far outweigh any reasons to stay and the guilt will go away, I promise!
What are your thoughts? Have you ever left a job and felt guilty about it? Please share your experience in the comments below to help others going through it!
Image credits – Photo by Jura on Unsplash
Phil lives in England, UK, and has around 20 years experience as a professional life, career and executive coach. He started this blog to help others find and define their own self development journey. Blogging about a wide range of topics to help facilitate a better future.