‘NCIS Los Angeles’: Maybe Nell Should Leave the Team for Good

NCIS: Los Angeles Season 11 ended without Nell (Renée Felice Smith). She was struggling with whether she should leave NCIS or tough it out. Here’s why it might be time for Nell to leave for good.

Nell isn’t happy

Renée Felice Smith | Monty Brinton/CBS via Getty Images
Renée Felice Smith | Monty Brinton/CBS via Getty Images

Working for NCIS will wear you down after a while. During Kensi’s talk with Nell and Fatima, she admitted it can be really tough to be a member of the agency. It’s clear Nell isn’t happy where she is. Hetty persuaded Nell to take some time to think about her decision. She offered to let her take her vacation time and then decide at the end if she wanted to return. Hetty told her if she doesn’t hear back, she will consider it Nell’s official resignation.

Since Nell isn’t happy, it doesn’t seem like there’s much to think about. If you’re miserable at your job, you’re not going to perform well. Nell should trust her gut and move on. Laura Handrick, a contributing human resources professional at Choosing Therapy, told Showbiz Cheat Sheet it’s best to trust your instincts when it comes to job satisfaction.

“The most obvious sign that you should leave a job comes from inside you — your gut,” said Handrick. “You often know it’s time to start looking for another job when you feel underutilized, disrespected, or pushed beyond your values limits.”

Nell seems to have checked out

Nell definitely needs a break | by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images
Nell definitely needs a break | by Sonja Flemming/CBS via Getty Images

From what Nell said to Kensi and Hetty, it seems like she’s not fully there when she’s at work. She’s present, but her head just isn’t in the game. Nell’s job requires her to work with a team, so if she isn’t giving her best every day, it’s not going to work. She needs to be fully engaged and ready to dive in. Her team needs her. If she can’t show up and support everyone when they really need her, she should step aside and let someone else apply for her job.

Working with Devin Rountree will be a nightmare

FBI Agent Devin Rountree (Caleb Castille) is offered a position with NCIS during season 11, episode 22,  (titled “Code of Conduct”). Unfortunately, Rountree is terrible at his job. He almost got himself and others killed on two separate occasions (and counting).

Rountree acts before he speaks, and he’s been making major errors since his first day on the job. If he accepts the offer to join NCIS as a full-time agent, we’re scared for anyone who will be working closely with him. Nell should dodge that bullet while she can. Interacting with Rountree is sure to add a lot of unnecessary stress to Nell’s day.

What Nell should do during her sabbatical

Nell needs time to think about what she’s going to do next, so a sabbatical is a good choice. Damian Birkel, founder and executive director of Professionals in Transition® Support Group, Inc., suggests focusing on self-care during a break from work.

“First, do nothing. Rest, relax, and eat for as long as it takes to restore your energy and feel relaxed and calm,” says Birkel. “Travel or do the things on your bucket list. As you relax and energize, your mind is at work. Insights about your work style and situation will begin to bubble up. Listen to the inner voice within and don’t be surprised if you emerge from your sabbatical singing a new song.”

Read more: ‘NCIS: Los Angeles’: Nell’s Leave of Absence Seems to Be Causing Trouble

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