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Getting Over Leaving a Bad Job

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When you leave a bad job, you may feel discouraged and think you'll never find a satisfying one. An unfavorable job experience doesn't mean that future job opportunities will be just as horrible. In fact, they may be so rewarding that you'll wish you'd found them sooner. By taking valuable lessons you learned from your old job to your new job, you'll be able to avoid some of the pitfalls that made your previous employment a disaster.

Learn from Experience

Previous work experiences can help you narrow down what type of work and employer truly fit with your personality and career goals. If you were unhappy because the company was so large you felt overlooked, look for a new job at a smaller firm. Or if you didn't get along well with a micromanaging boss, seek an employer who gives employees freedom to do their work without continual oversight. You can use a bad work experience to find a new position that better suits your skill sets and work style.

Focus on Positive Relationships

When you're recovering from a bad job experience, it's almost like dealing with a horrible relationship break-up. You might feel angry, bitter, sad or depressed because the job didn't go as well as you'd hoped. According to Forbes, focusing on healthy relationships, things you love and positive future goals can help you deal with your frustration and disappointment. A bad job experience may be a small setback, but it doesn't have to affect your future outlook.

Update Your Resume

Your previous work experience might have left you feeling frustrated and discouraged, but you can still add your valuable work experience to your resume. When you update your resume, focus on positive skills you gained from your previous employment. If you held a leadership role or supervised employees, add those job responsibilities to your work experiences section. If you learned a new computer software program or advanced your technical abilities, include those proficiencies in your work skills section.

Forgive and Move On

Holding a grudge against your previous employer or a former co-worker won't help you move forward with personal and career goals. Forgive whomever hurt you and put past negative work experiences behind you so you can pursue new opportunities. If you wallow in self-pity or get lost in all the disappointment, your new boss and co-workers might think you're unfriendly, negative, depressed or grumpy. You need a fresh start, and forgiveness provides closure so you can move on to bigger and brighter things.


As curriculum developer and educator, Kristine Tucker has enjoyed the plethora of English assignments she's read (and graded!) over the years. Her experiences as vice-president of an energy consulting firm have given her the opportunity to explore business writing and HR. Tucker has a BA and holds Ohio teaching credentials.

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