BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – A new study led by labor management platform TimeForge claims the number of Louisiana workers who’ve been quitting their jobs is so high, the state now has the third-highest resignation rate in the U.S. 

Analysts with TimeForge say a total of 4,553,384 resignations already have occurred in 2023. Their research indicates that most who give notice in Louisiana are accommodation and food industry workers.

TimeForge analysts believe these resignation statistics imply the vast majority of Louisiana’s workers are unhappy in their jobs.

How can deep dissatisfaction on the job affect one’s overall well-being? And most importantly, what can be done to remedy such a situation?

Unhappiness at work becomes unhappiness at home

Many experts believe our happiness at work impacts our ability to enjoy life in general.

“Our careers are so intertwined with every facet of our lives that happiness and a sense of fulfillment with one’s work are crucial to good relationships and overall enjoyment of life,” said Dr. Mary Feduccia, a Baton Rouge-based career counselor and professional development coach who runs CareerWorks360.

She added, “We cannot separate our lives at work and our lives outside of work because one carries over significantly into the other.”

Feduccia’s decades of experience in career counseling led her to say, “Most people are unhappy at work for two predominant reasons: the job is not a good fit for who they are, or the environment in which they work is unreasonable or sometimes hostile. In my experience, the first reason is the cause of unhappiness in nine out of 10 cases. There are so many people who made poor choices about their career direction.”

In such cases, Feduccia suggests a person take some time to explore their skills, talents, interests, personality and values. Once they’ve assessed what they’re capable of and eager to pursue, this knowledge will help them find a career they’re better suited to.

‘Sometimes changing careers is not necessary,’ expert says

But must the unhappy worker resign? Their job may provide medical benefits necessary for survival. Or perhaps they’ve forged irreplaceable friendships with co-workers.

“Sometimes changing careers is not necessary,” Feduccia said.

If a worker who once loved their job slowly begins to dread it, this may not be a red flag to resign. Instead, it may be an indicator to reassess who they are and what they want from life.

Feduccia explained, “As humans, we grow and we change and situations and conditions in our lives change.  It’s important to take stock of who we are at these different turning points and evaluate whether or not the career we are in is the best choice for us at that point.”

“After a thorough evaluation of oneself, it may become evident that doing a different type of work within the same career field solves the problem of discontent with the type of work,” she advised.

To properly evaluate one’s current needs, working with an experienced career coach or advisor can be helpful. After the assessment, employees might find precisely what they need in a different department at their current job.

Same job+ new goals = happiness rekindled

Some people recognize the value of remaining with their current employers while looking to the future for more exciting career possibilities. This helps rekindle their appreciation for life and work.

Instead of feeling “stuck” in a job they can’t quit, they begin to see all the possibilities open to them. Many are in the form of education.

Feduccia said, “Upskilling or reskilling has become possible and attainable with certifications that can be acquired in a reasonable amount of time while one continues in the current job.”

But mapping out such an education plan may require a shift in mindset and expert guidance.

“Oftentimes people mistakenly think that a completely new degree, trade program or specialized training opportunity is necessary but realistically not possible for them,” said Feduccia. “However, this is often not the case. Again, a good career counselor can help an individual understand the best career direction and how to pursue it.” 

When quitting is the most logical option

“There are an incredible number of people who are unhappy in their jobs but feel that they just need to learn to love them,” Feduccia said. “Signs that a person needs to abandon this way of thinking and pursue a new job or a new career include the following: not being able to leave work at the end of the day and go home ready to engage in healthy relationships and activities, feeling stressed to the point that conversations with others or sleep are affected, or experiencing a sense of dread when one’s alarm clock goes off in the morning signaling it’s time to get up to go to work.”

She said, “When situations at work are so that they cause disruption in relationships and other aspects of life outside of work, it’s imperative that a change is made. Fear of change or not knowing how to change often prevents a person from taking the steps needed to make a healthy change.”

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