Dealing with your emotions when leaving a job

In today's job market, changing careers or companies has become more of an accepted practice than ever before. But exiting a job doesn't come without a series of emotions. It's a good idea to remember that just like yourself, others within your present organizations will most likely move companies.

The old saying, "You never know when you'll meet someone again," becomes an important mantra when planning your exit strategy. You don't want to burn any bridges that you will one day not be able to reassemble.

In the case of going out on your own, your present employer can become your best client or source of future clients. Mergers and acquisition can also bring professionals back on to the same playing field. Being aware of the emotions you and your co-workers will experience as you depart, can help you avoid future conflicts.

Here are some emotions you may feel and ways to handle it:

Feeling: You can't stand your boss and he's made your life hell for the past 4 years and you'd like nothing more than to tell him to stick his job.
Wiser Thoughts: Think twice before you act. Your boss may become a reference in the future.

Feeling: You are going to make millions in salary at your new company and you'd like to jump for joy as soon as you give notice
Wiser Thoughts: Refrain from a touchdown dance. Consider the feelings of your loyal co-workers and don't forget every job has its challenges.

Feelings: You feel bad that you are leaving and you know you could have given more last year so you work harder during your last week.
Wiser Thoughts: Finish what's doable, train others and go.

Feelings: You've quit and accepted another position but you are having second thoughts.
Wiser Thoughts: Remind yourself of all the reasons you began the interviewing process with your new employer. Reflect on your first day jitters with your present employer.

Feelings: You should be happy but you feel a longing for your former employment.
Wiser Thoughts: Remember why you left. Pick one reason that was motivating and reflect on it and the feelings it generated.

Feelings: When co-workers find out you are leaving for a better opportunity will begin to give you the cold shoulder.
Wiser Thoughts: Understand that they may feel you are abandoning them.