Be Poor or Miserable – you choose!

This post on my Tumbler feed really spoke to me. I hate my job, and would love to do something – anything – else that I would actually enjoy doing, but I could not earn the salary or , more importantly, get the benefits that I have anywhere else (without going back to college.) I would be perfectly happy having a job with no supervising responsibilities, no customer service responsibilities, where I could just work on stocking shelves, or record keeping, or caring for animals, or organizing people’s home or offices, or a million other things I’m more suited for and interested in. But in order to earn what I want/need to, I have to do jobs that make me miserable. I’m not saying different careers shouldn’t pay differently (a Doctor SHOULD get more money than a retail clerk,) but everyone deserves to earn a living wage for what they do.

“It’s legitimately fucked how people view labor in the modern age. I’m Happy stocking shelves, why does that mean I shouldn’t make enough money to live? Don’t you think we should be cultivating a workforce that’s happy to do the things they want? Do you want a doctor whose only working for his paycheck & not out of an actual urge to help others? Do you want the garbagemen who keep your city clean to live impoverished because they’re not bootstrapping hard enough? Every single American institution is working backwards to solve problems that could easily be solved with compassion and empathy.”

“The way in which I’ve been pushed into fields that I don’t want to do and away from fields that I want to do is disgusting and I absolutely hate it. You want me to do law? You’re going to get one more lawyer who’s just there for the money. You want me to do medicine? You’re going to get one more doctor who treats patients like items on a list. And what can I do? The alternative is not being able to live comfortably because I chose to do something I like doing. I hate this so much that I cannot express it fully in any given form.”

11 thoughts on “Be Poor or Miserable – you choose!

  1. It is complicated. My advice to a college student this week, was to find work they are passionate about and that delivers a personal sense of value, and forget about the money.

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    • It’s a great sentiment, but unless you’re independently wealthy, or could afford to go to college and get a degree in a field that’s lucrative, or at least have connections to get your foot in the door, you can’t “forget about the money.” I’ve been poor, broke, homeless, and without medical care. I choose every day to suffer at a job I hate so I don’t suffer in my personal life and can help provide for my family. That’s the point of my post. We SHOULD all be able to do something we’re passionate about, or at least content (and not miserable) doing. I loved working at a coffee bar, for example, and could probably have done it all my life, if I didn’t want to live in a decent home, own a vehicle, get treatment for my health issues, or do anything beyond go to work and stay home. I could not afford to live on that salary without making massive concessions, giving up almost everything I enjoy, and watching every nickel and dime. We don’t all have the same skill sets, abilities, wellness, financials, or opportunities to “do what we want” and make a living at it. And we need laborers in every walk of life for society to run smoothly and obtain the services we all enjoy. Everyone should be appreciated for the job they do and be paid enough to live on it. That’s the “American Dream” but that dream doesn’t exist for most people anymore. It’s sad, especially since we live in the wealthiest nation in the world. Sigh…

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  2. Yeah, things are truly different nowadays. I’m now working in customer service. If I were still renting an apartment at current market rates and didn’t have an inheritance, I’d have to get a second job like everyone else. The jobs simply do not keep up with the higher cost of living.

    I fear we’re going to see a lot of empty homes and apartments soon because the people renting them will move away or out into the streets. That’s how bad it’s become.

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  3. I felt much the same way during my banking career. I was perfectly happy just being a remittance clerk in the Trudy department but was promoted/pushed into ever increasing responsibilities until I was the manager of other people writing performance reviews which I hated to do. When I finally hit out of banking and did front desk hotel work (which I lived), there came a time when they tried to promote: push me into management again. This time I said “No!” Never regretted my choice not to descend into that whirlpool of responsibility again. That’s fine fir some but not for me. Life is too short.

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  4. I think my biggest hope for you is that you will find that lateral transfer into a job you can tolerate better. Failing that, I hope that in a little while (maybe 1506 days or so?) you are able to find more rewarding things to do, and have enough good health to enjoy them.

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