The economy is fairly healthy these days, which means your chances of getting a new job are pretty good if you apply for a role you're qualified for. If you're unhappy with your current employer, it pays to explore your options for getting hired elsewhere.
But many people balk at the idea of pursuing a new job, and resign themselves to remaining miserable. Rather than go that route, it pays to face your fears head on -- and overcome them. Here's how to get past some of the reasons you may be hesitating to blast out your resume and land an offer.
1. You're worried you'll get caught looking
Looking for work can be a full-time job itself, and if you're currently employed, it's natural to worry that your boss will get wind of your job search and retaliate by firing you before you're hired elsewhere.
To prevent that from happening, don't conduct your job search at work. Rather, limit that search to when you're not at the office. Don't even respond to calls or emails from recruiters or prospective employers when you're on your company's dime.
Also, schedule your interviews strategically. If you agree to lunchtime meetings, you'll need to repeatedly explain why you're wearing a suit to work when you normally show up in jeans. But if you schedule interviews early in the morning or late in the day, you may be able to squeeze them in outside of your regular working hours, thereby eliminating suspicion.
2. You're nervous about interviewing
If you've been at the same job for quite some time, you may be rusty on the interview front. But don't let that be a reason you don't apply for a new role.
Instead, brush up on your interview skills. Read up on the questions that are commonly asked, and prepare for curveballs that may be thrown your way. It also pays to recruit a friend and run through some mock interviews together so that you can get a feel for how those conversations might go, and work through any kinks you identify.
3. You're worried about hating a different company's culture
Sometimes, the evil you know is better than the evil you don't. Even if you're displeased with your current employer, you may be tentative about working for a new one, for fear that you'll stumble into an even more unpleasant situation.
The solution? Read up on each company before you apply, to get a sense of what its culture entails. Sites like Glassdoor let you access employee reviews so you can see whether workers are largely satisfied or overwhelmingly miserable; from there, you can decide which openings to pursue. Another option? If there's a job you really want but are unsure about the company, reach out to your personal network of professional contacts and see if anyone knows someone who works for that employer. If there is someone you can be put in touch with, you'll have a great opportunity to vet that company in advance.
It's not easy to move from one job to another, but if you're not content in your current position, whether because of your boss, your salary, or your colleagues, then it pays to explore your options elsewhere. And while getting over your fears isn't easy, if you do push forward, you could find yourself with a much better job and a highly improved outlook on a whole.