Making the decision to quit your job isn’t one that comes easily. Unless you’ve waited far too long to move on to your next opportunity, there are probably a few things you’re going to miss about the company you’re leaving.

It’s totally normal to feel some guilt when it comes to resigning from your job, but those guilty feelings are not necessary, especially if you’re leaving your job on good terms.

leave your job without feeling guilty

The first thing you should do before you begin looking for a new career is to identify the reasons you want to leave your current role. Once you’ve clearly identified the reasons you want to move on, it will be easier to find opportunities that align to your career goals. Further, clearly understanding your career goals will give you the information you need to talk candidly with your boss about your opportunities within your current organization.

Once you’ve decided it’s time to move on, don’t look back and absolutely don’t feel bad about the decision you’re making. Remember, you’ve vetted out the choices and decided it’s what’s best for you. Here are a few other things to consider to help you leave your job without feeling (too) guilty:

  1. You don’t have to burn bridges to leave your job. Yes, you’re leaving, but as long as you do so gracefully, you don’t have to burn bridges with your coworkers, or even your manager. Give at least two week’s notice, document processes you use in your day-to-day, train others to do your work and give your former employer your all until the end of your very last day. In some cases, it may even make sense for you to offer to serve as a consultant for the company while they transition someone else into your role. While you should never feel guilty about moving on, doing these things will help ensure a smooth transition that no one feels bitter about.
  2. Professionals are expected to change. Whether you’re wanting to charge ahead in your career and your current company just doesn’t have the growth opportunities, or you’d prefer to make a shift to a new industry, professionals are expected to grow and change. The company you’re leaving may be a great organization, but if it’s not right for your current needs and goals, it’s okay to part ways.
  3. It’s never the perfect time to leave. There will always be upcoming projects, deadlines and commitments. With one thing or another always on the horizon, it will never feel like the right time to move on. If you wait for the “perfect time to leave,” you’ll be stuck in your current role forever. Realizing that the time will never be right should help you feel better about the timing of your decision.

By the time you’ve made the decision to accept another offer, you should be fully committed to your resignation and able to leave without feeling guilty.

If you’re still feeling guilty or unsure, you may find yourself in a tough spot if your employer tries to give you a counter offer – a big red flag for most employees. In fact, for one reason or another, more than 80 percent of people who accept a counteroffer will not be with their current employer in just six months.

Ready to make a career switch? Our recruiters can help you prepare for the change. Visit to learn more about our career services.

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