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Declare Your Independence From Your Employer (But Not the Way You Think)

First things first: do not quit your job, without having another one lined up. No matter how lousy your current gig feels, being unemployed is almost certainly worse. However, if you really hate your job, and you're trying not to think about the horror show waiting for you back at the office on the other side of this lovely holiday weekend, we have a few tips to make things better today – no new gig required.
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First things first: do not quit your job, without having another one lined up. No matter how lousy your current gig feels, being unemployed is almost certainly worse. However, if you really hate your job, and you’re trying not to think about the horror show waiting for you back at the office on the other side of this lovely holiday weekend, we have a few tips to make things better today – no new gig required.

1. Be on your own side.

Employers want you to be loyal. It’s in their best interests if they can convince you to think of them before you think of yourself. A dedicated employee works harder, for more hours, and is less likely to jump ship for a new opportunity. All of this makes and saves them money they’d otherwise have to spend hiring and training your replacement … or a few more employees to help make your day more manageable.

The problem, of course, is that it’s not in your best interest to be loyal. By all means, work hard. Give your company what they paid for. Just remember that they’re renting your time, not buying your soul. You don’t have to sacrifice your interests for theirs.

2. Keep your resume up-to-date…

…and not just when you get a new job or promotion. Are you heading up a project, or learning a new skill, or earning a certification? Even if none of these apply, make time to look at your resume on a regular basis. You might be surprised what’s still on there, or what you’ve left off.

Do You Know What You're Worth?

3. Evaluate your job as if you were interviewing for it anew.

If this were a brand-new opportunity, would you take it? Also consider your actual – as opposed to originally advertised – job responsibilities. How much salary would you ask for, if you were negotiating today?

PayScale’s Salary Survey is a great place to start gathering information. Generate a free Salary Report, and find out whether you’re getting paid what you deserve. Then, start making a plan to ask for it.

This post was updated from an earlier version previously published on PayScale.

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Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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