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A job that loves me

Countdown to the career fair: two days! AAAAGH!

I got to thinking this morning about my retail job at the Discovery Channel Store. I almost cried at the end of the summer when I had to leave that job, I'm serious, I loved it. I loved cleaning out the water fountains. I loved getting to watch every Crocodile Hunter home video that came out. I loved how to store smelled and felt and the expression on people's faces when they walked in the door. It was the opposite of my job at the engineering firm - there I got paid very well to live a pointless, meaningless existance. At DCS I got paid $7 an hour to make people happy, really enrich their lives. Yes, the stuff was expensive and mostly useless, and we conveyed the message that materialism will make you happy, so in that respect it was shallow and dumb. But it was common for people to leave with a smile on their faces after they shopped our store, because there were pretty things and it was clean and pleasent. People smile when they leave an engineering firm because they're not coming back, that's about it.

So what if I went back there? I might get a management position, but even that would mean earning less money than I did as an electronics intern. I'd be helping people. I'd be inspiring others to put passion into their work. I like helping people and creating an atmosphere. I'd lose respect from the outside world... retail is just above waiting tables in their minds.

I also sometimes think I'd like to be an electrician or something. You know, the guys with pants that show their butt-cracks, rescuing housewives with broken air conditioners. Then I could help people, get to know customers.

The goal here is to make an impact on the world, a few people at a time, and if it costs me money/respect I guess I'm okay with that these days. I have tons of respect for anyone who can find a job they love doing and be passionate about their life every day, and if everyone around me can't see me doing that then I should just learn to blow them off and not care.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
katlynel
Feb. 5th, 2002 12:48 pm (UTC)
I'm struggling with the same thing ... I'm starting to think I might actually like to teach high school. And it's hard picturing myself in a job that's so little respected by people. Which is sad. But, I don't know ... what good is prestige and money compared to happiness?
fuxx0r
Feb. 5th, 2002 01:00 pm (UTC)
Once again proving that you aren't being swept away by modern society's greed for money...I love that. It's a very admirable thing! *admires*
spacefem
Feb. 5th, 2002 06:34 pm (UTC)
I think I've learned that money can only buy happiness by returning after long absences. If you just have money all the time it can't be a constantly rewarding thing, that's just how life is. I just hope I can use this bit of insight to make my life worth something.
aliki
Feb. 5th, 2002 01:28 pm (UTC)
i agree with the philosophy of having a career that makes you happy. sure, get a boring job and get paid a lot, but think about the stress and the misery of waking up every morning and just DREADING to go to work.

my mom used to say "do what makes you happy and it will show, and then, the money will come"
not so sure the money will come (heh, can imagine myself being a teacher too... and gosh, dont think money would be coming anytim soon) but i think there is some truth in what she says..

plus, an italian proverb: "at the end of the chess game, the king and the pawn both return to the same box." remember, no matter how much money you make, you can't take it with ya.
echthroix
Feb. 5th, 2002 08:47 pm (UTC)
Life and Money
Kimmy,

I used to work for Schwans Sales Enterprises...you know, the Ice-Cream guys. I worked 40 hours a week in a VERY COLD Freezer with bad pay and a HUGE infestation of Brown Recluse spiders.

But I had good people to work with, and I got to laugh.

I'd go back in a heartbeat. It's nice to know I'm not the only one who feels that happiness is sometimes a better paycheck...
missniceness
Feb. 6th, 2002 04:13 am (UTC)
Damned if you do...
I understand your struggle; I went from being an industrial engineering major to an aviation electronics major just because I didn't want to study this facinating field, and then deal with the crazy cut-throat antics of the professional engineering world. If anything, I would want to become an engineering professor were my creativity and "Vs. the grain" attitude would be an asset other than a hinderance.
So now I learn to do the hands-on stuff...not as much money, but I think I've found my niche.
But even if I'm wrong, it's not like I would be the 1st American to change their career for the upteenth time.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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