Tell-Tale Signs Your Boss Wants You to Quit

Is it just work stress you’re feeling, or are you actually just witnessing signs your boss wants you to quit?

Every single person out there has experienced stressful days, weeks, or months at work. There are no jobs in existence that don’t have stress attached to them, and while it’s normal to have a rare day when you end up crying, you may need to think twice about seeing this as par for the course if it’s happening too often.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again—work is a lot like dating these days. With many kinds of people, they will send subtle hints when a relationship is dying out and hope that the other person will dump them. Managers, believe it or not, will often do the same thing. If you’re noticing the tone of work changing, you might be seeing signs your boss wants you to quit.

Not sure what’s going on? These signs suggest that you’re being given the subtle push to find a new place to work with the higher-ups.

They are being very condescending to you.

Do your higher-ups act like you’re five years old? Do they take a needlessly formal way of talking with you, as if they want to make sure you know that they're better than you? Do they talk over you, or otherwise make it sure that you feel small around them?

If you notice this stuff happening fairly regularly, especially after you've told them to knock it off, they may be doing that just to try to make you upset enough to quit. It's actually one of the signs your company wants you to quit

Honestly, if they're doing this, they are telling you that you don't matter to them. Worse, they're telling you that you're not even worth the respect you want—even when that's free. 

If you really think about it, would you even want to stay in a place that does this to you? As much as it's one of the more obvious signs your boss wants you to quit, it may actually also be the universe's way of saying you don't belong. 

You keep getting passed up for responsibility.

You were told you'd be getting promotions and responsibility galore... but here you are, watching the very things you were expecting to be given being handed to other people. This often means one of two things: your boss wants you to quit, or they don't appreciate you.

If you regularly find yourself getting placed beneath people who have less experience than you, it may be time to call it quits. You probably could get better pay, more respect, or job security elsewhere. 

The assignments that you're being given are getting increasingly difficult.

One of the most classic signs your boss wants you to quit is when they give you tasks that are increasingly difficult without giving you the resources to help. When you DO manage to complete a task, many managers who are trying to fire you actually will find some reason to complain about it regardless.

The reason why they're doing this is that they want you to tell them you can't keep it up—and then nicely go on your way. Many of them just can't bring themselves to fire someone, so they think it's better to just make the environment as unpleasant as possible for those they want to get rid of.

If you feel like you're regularly being set up for failure, then it could be that they are also working on documenting a case on firing you. 

You're being ignored.

One of the biggest signs your boss wants you to quit is when they ignore you. If they don't acknowledge you, don't even bother replying to you when you message them, or otherwise just keep you out of any conversation, it's safe to say that they are trying to send a message. 

You don't owe your boss your dignity, so stop acting like it's part of the game. By ignoring you, they're saying, "You're not needed here. Please go. I don't care if it hurts your feelings." 

Sadly, there's not much you can do to fix this. Rather, at this point, looking for other jobs is your best line of defense. 

Actual verbal abuse has happened.

Generally speaking, it's a good idea to take a manager's verbal abuse towards you as signs your boss wants you to quit. If you're ever called "an idiot," put on the spotlight by them, or are openly mocked by your manager, it's safe to say they do not want you to be happy at work.

In this case, I also consider berating and/or scolding you specifically in front of others abuse. It's humiliating and can be handled with more tact—and most management knows this.

Stop trying to cope with hating your boss if this happens; it's time for a quit. Even if they say they don't want you to quit afterwards, you owe it to yourself and your dignity to ensure that you do right by you. 

You're never really included in decisions, and you're finding yourself constantly out of the loop.

Does it feel like getting details turned into a Herculean task? Do you feel alone at work? Would you have better luck pulling teeth out of your mouth with a pair of pliers than it would be to get information that you keep asking for? 

If so, make no mistake about it, those are usually signs your boss wants you to quit. The psychological effects of being left out are very well-known, so it's not like they don't know it's upsetting you. It's also a pretty good indicator that your boss doesn't care about your input enough to keep you in the know.

You find yourself working in a broom closet.

Out of sight, out of mind, as the saying goes. Being moved further and further away from the action is a good indicator something's up—and that you're not going to like it. Most of the time, it's one of the more visible signs that your boss wants you to quit, or that they want to fire you. 

Your boss never shows you eye contact.

Eye contact is unifying. It's a sign that says, "Hey, we're on the same level." When people avoid eye contact, they are saying that they're hiding something. They do not feel like you're on the same wavelength, and in many cases, it's a sign they are worried you'll detect hostility in their eyes. 

While it may seem really subtle, it's actually a profound thing to pick up on. Make no mistake about it, if you notice this, it's not time to learn how to impress your boss. It's time to realize you're seeing signs your boss wants you to quit. 

The water cooler banter turned into ice.

Do you get the feeling like your boss is hoping you'll stop talking to other people? Or worse, do you feel like you've stopped being included in the friendships in the office?

If you notice the general tone of the office shift in a colder way, it could be that they've already heard that you're going to be fired. However, if you notice that it's usually just your boss singling you out, it could be one of the signs your boss wants you to quit. 

The subtly hint that you should quit or "take a break."

Last but not least, one of the most obvious signs your boss wants you to quit is that they tell you that you'd be better off quitting. They may slowly insinuate that layoffs are happening, or that you "really should reevaluate what you're doing with life."

At this point, they're overtly trying to get you to quit. Make no mistake, it's better to just brush off the resume if you see this happening. You can do better than grinding in a place where you're not wanted. 

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