I don't want to reveal the field I'm working in, but hopefully my question will be general enough that I don't need to.
I've been at my job for a couple of years now. The team I'm on has to work closely with other departments. While I love working with the people in my office, the other departments are making my life (and virtually everyone else of any standing's life) sheer hell. They ignore any and all planning we do to try and accomodate the needs of everyone we work with, bombarding us with "urgent" issues that they need addressed immediately. Recently a couple of my teammates have experienced the next level of this- essentially being required to do work for the other departments (and when I say "do work for", I mean actually doing the tasks the other teams are supposed to do). Deadlines are subject to change for the worse at any moment; last year a project we were originally given two months to do (and would have been difficult to complete in even that amount of time) suddenly became required in two weeks when one of the departments decided out of nowhere they needed something ASAP. It should be a measure of my team that we did, in fact, complete it during that span, but I feel like we lost a few years off our lives in doing so.
Needless to say, the stress is getting ridiculous, and I'm starting to get burned out. Upper-level management is as frustrated as we are, but there's nothing that can be done, for reasons I won't explain here. Some of my coworkers have the (possibly healthier) attitude that we can only do as much as we can do and we have to let the chips fall where they may, but I'm not the kind of person that can do this easily; I identify with my job, my performance, and the performance of the team I'm on too much.
Do I need to learn how to do this, however? Or- and I realize my description is brief, because I can't reveal too much about any of this on a public forum- does it sound instead like maybe I ought to start looking around? If so, how do I deal with the guilt I'll inevitably feel over leaving my coworkers with even more work to do once I'm gone? Will prospective employers understand my reasoning for wanting to leave my current job?