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Happy Valentine’s Day!

It’s time to end that toxic eight-hour-a-day relationship. You wouldn’t put up with all the negativity in a romantic partner. Why are you putting up with it at work?

Every February, I write a column about why it’s important to love your job. This year, however, I’ve decided to take a different approach. I’m going to encourage you to break it off with your job — provided, of course, you don’t love it anymore.

I know, it’s a hard decision to make. Your job has been so reliable, so stable. You don’t want to be left in the cold with no job to your name. But is holding onto this gig worth it?

Are you really happy? Does your job put you first? Or does your job sap your strength, drain your energy, and even take money out of your wallet?

You may spend more time at work than you do with your spouse, so it’s important your job be one you love. If it’s not, now is the time to make a change — and I do mean right now!

The job market is the best it has been in a generation. Many economists say it hasn’t been this great since the late 1960s. New jobs are showing up every day. Do yourself a favor: Look and see what’s new in your field. You might be surprised.

Make a list of all the things you want in a job. What would make you really love your work? Do you want a great boss? A great team? A product you can get behind? Are you looking for a company with integrity?

Write down your list of goals, and then use it to guide your search. What you’re hoping for is out there. Don’t stay committed to a company that is not committed to you. Look for something better, something more fulfilling. Make your happiness a priority.

Breaking up with your job isn’t as hard as it sounds. Just follow a few simple tips:

  1. Don’t tell anyone you’re leaving until you’ve secured a new job.
  2. Once you’ve found a new job, wait until you’ve accepted it in writing to tell your company.
  3. Start with your boss. Thank them for the opportunity and let them know you’ve found something new. Give at least two weeks of notice, but no more than four. Things can get stressful if you give too much notice. After you’ve shared your news verbally, confirm it in an email to your boss.
  4. Come up with a plan for how and when you’ll share the great news with the larger team.

Before long, the breakup will be complete, and you’ll be off to a bigger and better opportunity you truly love!

A version of this article originally appeared on Copeland Coaching.

Angela Copeland is a career coach and CEO at Copeland Coaching.

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