“Just do it. Don’t let your dreams be dreams.” Whatever Shia Labeouf intended by his 30-minute performance art, these two phrases are the most oft memed and gifed. He screams “JUST DO IT!” and softly speaks the next phrase.

It’s jarring and at the same time uplifting. Dreamers get a pedestal in our society only if they don’t keep their dreams to themselves. A dream ceases to be a dream once it becomes reality.

Are you converting your dreams to reality or are you biding your time? Would you rather be Mr. Anderson in a cubicle or Neo following the white rabbit? And how do you know the difference between the two?

Today I’m going to free your mind. By the time you finish this article, you will know whether you should continue in your current job or quit and make the dream a reality.

1. You’re Bored to Death and You Dread Going to Work

I’ve been here. You have nightmares about work. You wake up dreading work, you walk into work dreading work, and you continue to dread work as you attempt to work.

There is nothing exciting or challenging about your day. And you’re not alone. 20% of Americans find their workplace hostile.

It’s time to figure out what is making your either dread work or find it droll. If it’s something you can’t change like your boss or the kind of work, then it’s time to quit.

If it’s a lack of skills, a lack of education or training, it’s time to own up and make a change. You may still choose to quit, but you will still need to find a skill set to acquire and further enhance your career.

This skill set could be as simple as a short course in online marketing or a filmmaking course. But before you make the jump, know you have the skills to land.

2. You’ve Hit the Advancement Ceiling and You’re Still Not the Boss

One awesome thing about going freelance is that you’re the boss. You make your own schedule, you set your own goals. Sure, you need other people so you can make money, but they aren’t the boss of your company.

In a job, you almost always have someone else telling you what to do. But the further you climb up the corporate ladder, the fewer people there are above you.

In some companies, you can’t advance far. In fact, some bosses put a cap on upward mobility because they fear for the safety of their own position. If you’re in a company like this, it’s time to quit your job.

When you’re a freelancer or a business owner, you can always advance. You add value to your position when you take on new skills or new products and services. And you almost never have someone above you telling you what to do or how to do it.

If you’re self-motivated to continue to grow and learn on your own and you see no opportunity for advancement, then it might be time to strike out on your own.

3. You Could Make the Same or More in Less Time Pursuing Your Dream

Some people are willing to accept less pay to pursue their dreams. And you might have to max out your credit or find a poor credit credit card to live off for a while before you become profitable. But some people’s dreams can almost immediately replace a job.

Imagine this: You’re doing soul-sucking, back-breaking work at a factory. You work overtime every week and struggle to make ends meet.

A friend tells you about this online writing job that pays more per hour than your factory job. You take the position and work from home. You might still be struggling to make ends meet, but you’re no longer working overtime to do it and you’re not doing soul-sucking, back-breaking work.

Your quality of life suddenly went up 1,000% and now you have the time to ad skills, quality, and value to your own work. Soon you might find even more work that pays better per hour and makes even more money.

4. You Know More Than Your Boss About the Company and You Already Do Your Boss’ Work

Every boss/employee relationship should be based on trust. But if you can’t trust the person above you to do their job right, then you’ll end up doing their job for them. Doing both your job and your boss’ job can put you in a state of constant stress and anxiety.

And what’s more, if your boss is the CEO of the company, then you could be CEO of the company. Why not step out and start your own business?

You’ve already acquired the skills of leadership. And while you might have a “non-compete” you can always take your work online or to another location.

I’m not saying supplant your boss or create competition for your boss. I’m saying, become your own boss. Take what you now know and apply it to your dreams.

5. You’re Tired of Not Being in Control

One sure sign you have the entrepreneurial spirit is the fact you hate having a boss. If you’ve always wanted to steer the ship in your own direction, then maybe it’s time to “just do it.”

Imagine: no managers, no regulations, no rules about what you can and can’t do at work. You can work wherever and whenever you want.

Just Do It! Mr. Anderson

You’ve checked the list. You’ve said yes to every bullet point. It’s time to get off your desk chair, walk down to the boss’ office and tell them the truth.

You’re done. There’s no turning back. It might be scary, but the things in life that are most worth doing are sometimes the scariest.

If you’re looking for more entrepreneurial advice, check out Shoemoney’s Shoeintology.

By Ben Mattice

Benjamin Mattice is a freelance writer/editor, horror and sci-fi writer, SEO and affiliate marketing newbie, dog wrestler, cat wrangler, capoeirista, and long distance runner. He lives in the Palouse with his wife, three dogs, two cats, and two rats. Yes, that would probably be considered a mini-zoo.