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Old 03-07-11, 11:59 PM
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Career disappointment

Since I've been out of work and totally confused about what I should be doing, my parents and a lot of other people have been telling me I should just get a job, really any job that pays well enough, has health insurance, etc. When I say I can't do something meaningless, people tell me to grow up, that everyone does something meaningless, and you just have get up every day and do it to make a living.

How do other people do this and not just kill themselves? I've had jobs that are just jobs and don't provide anyway for personal growth and learning, but that was before I went to grad school so I was just looking forward to going to grad school.

I was raised that your education and career is everything. Then I went to college and all the professors and everybody treated you like you needed to have knowledge and understand how science and art work to be useful to society, like you were going to do something important. But now I'm 33 and all I see is buying and selling stuff, management consulting, and a lot of bull****. Unless you become a doctor or get a PhD and become a scientist or professor, there's really nothing real you can do with life. And how can you live with that?

I mean I just don't understand it, there's nothing else in life really other than your job/career. There's not enough time or money to do much else. How do you live knowing your job is bull**** and never will mean anything? How do you live waking up every day and spending the vast majority of your time knowing that you'll never be doing anything real?

I just feel like life has completely let me down. I'm 33 and I've suddenly realized there's nothing to look forward to. I'll never do anything really important or even interesting. I just don't know how to deal with this. How can I do well enough not to get fired if there's no motivation to get me out of bed in the morning?

I'm single and while I might be in a relationship again (no one ever knows) I don't make it part of my plan because you can't plan on that. I don't have many friends where I live. I don't have any talents like being able to play music or something. I have a few light "hobbies" but nothing I'm passionate about. I never had time to focus on things like this because I was always so consumed with school and work and finding jobs and stuff. My career is all I have in live, and it's bull****. How do I live knowing this? Without a meaningful career, my life basically doesn't exist. I just don't know how to live knowing this.
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Old 03-08-11, 12:38 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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Originally Posted by buggie View Post
Since I've been out of work and totally confused about what I should be doing, my parents and a lot of other people have been telling me I should just get a job, really any job that pays well enough, has health insurance, etc. When I say I can't do something meaningless, people tell me to grow up, that everyone does something meaningless, and you just have get up every day and do it to make a living.

How do other people do this and not just kill themselves? I've had jobs that are just jobs and don't provide anyway for personal growth and learning, but that was before I went to grad school so I was just looking forward to going to grad school.

I was raised that your education and career is everything. Then I went to college and all the professors and everybody treated you like you needed to have knowledge and understand how science and art work to be useful to society, like you were going to do something important. But now I'm 33 and all I see is buying and selling stuff, management consulting, and a lot of bull****. Unless you become a doctor or get a PhD and become a scientist or professor, there's really nothing real you can do with life. And how can you live with that?

I mean I just don't understand it, there's nothing else in life really other than your job/career. There's not enough time or money to do much else. How do you live knowing your job is bull**** and never will mean anything? How do you live waking up every day and spending the vast majority of your time knowing that you'll never be doing anything real?

I just feel like life has completely let me down. I'm 33 and I've suddenly realized there's nothing to look forward to. I'll never do anything really important or even interesting. I just don't know how to deal with this. How can I do well enough not to get fired if there's no motivation to get me out of bed in the morning?

I'm single and while I might be in a relationship again (no one ever knows) I don't make it part of my plan because you can't plan on that. I don't have many friends where I live. I don't have any talents like being able to play music or something. I have a few light "hobbies" but nothing I'm passionate about. I never had time to focus on things like this because I was always so consumed with school and work and finding jobs and stuff. My career is all I have in live, and it's bull****. How do I live knowing this? Without a meaningful career, my life basically doesn't exist. I just don't know how to live knowing this.

I am going thru the same thing. I have been seriously underemployed for over a year and just able to get temp jobs here & there. Everyone says what a 'great background' I have and I do have 2 degrees in in demand fields but I cannot get hired. I have been on many interviews as well in many cases spending literally hours at a company or even being invited back for lunch at the company and then never hearing another thing.

I don't understand how people in their 20's & 30's are able to get jobs so easily. If they lose one or worse quit without another lined up they are able to get rehired quickly or so it seems.

At this point I am looking to buy an existing business since I have come into some money from a deceased relatives estate. The whole interview 'process' is complete BS not to mention all the background & credit checking that is required to get hired now
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Old 03-08-11, 12:44 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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Originally Posted by NickL30 View Post
I am going thru the same thing. I have been seriously underemployed for over a year and just able to get temp jobs here & there. Everyone says what a 'great background' I have and I do have 2 degrees in in demand fields but I cannot get hired. I have been on many interviews as well in many cases spending literally hours at a company or even being invited back for lunch at the company and then never hearing another thing.

I don't understand how people in their 20's & 30's are able to get jobs so easily. If they lose one or worse quit without another lined up they are able to get rehired quickly or so it seems.

At this point I am looking to buy an existing business since I have come into some money from a deceased relatives estate. The whole interview 'process' is complete BS not to mention all the background & credit checking that is required to get hired now
It's not even about just getting a job for me, I don't want one if it's just going to be bull****. Why did I spend 20 years of my life learning about science and math and art and culture if there's no way to use to that knowledge afterwards? I feel like the majority of us should just die after we finish education, because there's no point in being alive anymore. I literally have no idea why I'm alive.
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Old 03-08-11, 12:46 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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Originally Posted by buggie View Post
How do other people do this and not just kill themselves? I've had jobs that are just jobs and don't provide anyway for personal growth and learning, but that was before I went to grad school so I was just looking forward to going to grad school.
That is why psyc drugs & alcohol are a big business. But why is it looked upon so badly if you take a year or so off and goto graduate school full time.??
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Old 03-08-11, 12:52 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

It's frustrating finding work in this economic climate let alone having the desire to find meaning in a job.

I guess I've felt the same way about life. I used to love my life and yet as an adult, I stare down the dark corridor of life with little ambience. I have intermittent levels of hope, but I'm often looking elsewhere to find a model for me to follow (ie my journalism prof- she's got ADD).

It's so easy to get desperate and wonder if and when it will all change. Add to it when you have less successful moments, and you are forced to think about them when you begin considering another job.

I've just sent my resume to a guy a few states away form me. I have no idea if it'll work out or not, but I figured I would just try it.

I do hope for great things for you buggie.
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Old 03-08-11, 12:54 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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Originally Posted by NickL30 View Post
That is why psyc drugs & alcohol are a big business. But why is it looked upon so badly if you take a year or so off and goto graduate school full time.??
I already went to grad school full time for two years. You can't just keep doing it over and over again, it's too expensive. My loan payments-- just from grad school-- are $700/month. I don't think anyone looks down on grad school, everyone I know went to grad school full time. Everywhere I've worked, it's been expected that anyone who hasn't been to grad school yet will be going. Do people look down on it?

I guess I will become an alcoholic at some point.
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Old 03-08-11, 12:58 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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It's frustrating finding work in this economic climate let alone having the desire to find meaning in a job.

I guess I've felt the same way about life. I used to love my life and yet as an adult, I stare down the dark corridor of life with little ambience. I have intermittent levels of hope, but I'm often looking elsewhere to find a model for me to follow (ie my journalism prof- she's got ADD).

It's so easy to get desperate and wonder if and when it will all change. Add to it when you have less successful moments, and you are forced to think about them when you begin considering another job.

I've just sent my resume to a guy a few states away form me. I have no idea if it'll work out or not, but I figured I would just try it.

I do hope for great things for you buggie.
But what kind of job am I supposed to get? I haven't had one yet that I've thought was fulfilling enough, and most of my jobs were supposed to be for very smart, knowledgable people and were supposed to be about real science and economics. Now I'm looking at these jobs that don't even pretend to be about real things. How am I supposed to get through life just working for some company? Not learning anything, not being challenged, not caring about what I'm doing? Only hoping to survive long enough to keep getting paid so I can live, and then why am I even bothering to live at that point? Your job is EVERYTHING.
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Old 03-08-11, 01:21 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

A couple of things -

Especially in this economy, a job is something you do to make some money. A job will never love you back. You're doing stuff to help The Man make more profit.

That said, any job can be what you make of it. If you're curious about things and open to trying new things, every day can be sort of an adventure. But again, you have to have some perspective or your job can become all-consuming.

To stay sane, I try and have a life outside work. I havent yet found the right fit yet. I tried golf but I suuuuuuck at it. Im going to look into volunteering at Habitat for Humanity or some other charity. I think helping others might help give my life a little meaning outside the office.

Good luck with things - youre not alone!
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Old 03-08-11, 01:27 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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A couple of things -

Especially in this economy, a job is something you do to make some money. A job will never love you back. You're doing stuff to help The Man make more profit.

That said, any job can be what you make of it. If you're curious about things and open to trying new things, every day can be sort of an adventure. But again, you have to have some perspective or your job can become all-consuming.

To stay sane, I try and have a life outside work. I havent yet found the right fit yet. I tried golf but I suuuuuuck at it. Im going to look into volunteering at Habitat for Humanity or some other charity. I think helping others might help give my life a little meaning outside the office.

Good luck with things - youre not alone!
If I can't find the paying job I'm supposed to do with my life, I can't find the volunteer job either. It's the same thing, really.
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Old 03-08-11, 01:28 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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Originally Posted by buggie View Post
But what kind of job am I supposed to get? I haven't had one yet that I've thought was fulfilling enough, and most of my jobs were supposed to be for very smart, knowledgable people and were supposed to be about real science and economics. Now I'm looking at these jobs that don't even pretend to be about real things. How am I supposed to get through life just working for some company? Not learning anything, not being challenged, not caring about what I'm doing? Only hoping to survive long enough to keep getting paid so I can live, and then why am I even bothering to live at that point? Your job is EVERYTHING.
I don't view a job as everything. It is very important. It seems as if you have been taught or learned somewhere that having a job where there was intelligent and smart people would bring you fulfillment. I'm not sure this is the best way to look at things, especially given our ADD brains.

I'm not saying that we can't have those types of jobs. I'm saying that our needs are different and those types of jobs may not be the best ones for us. Consequently, we may need to choose jobs based on different types of needs.

What are "real things" to you?
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Old 03-08-11, 01:30 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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Originally Posted by anonymouslyadd View Post
I don't view a job as everything. It is very important. It seems as if you have been taught or learned somewhere that having a job where there was intelligent and smart people would bring you fulfillment. I'm not sure this is the best way to look at things, especially given our ADD brains.

I'm not saying that we can't have those types of jobs. I'm saying that our needs are different and those types of jobs may not be the best ones for us. Consequently, we may need to choose jobs based on different types of needs.

What are "real things" to you?
Science (natural and social) and applied science or even art. Basically any job that is about how the world really works and not just a construction to give people something to do. I know this isn't really what jobs are about, and in 2011 most jobs are about just giving people something to do, but I can't do that. I need to get something out of it. If it were possible, I would just go to school forever. Sometimes I think that's the only point of life, and once it's over, life is over for the majority of us who do not have jobs that give the benefits of education.

It's not about being with intelligent or smart people, it's about doing something real and using those 20 years of education I put in. I mean we need farmers and stuff, but that's not what I know about so it's not what I'm talking about here.

If you never do anything real, interesting, or important in life, why are you here? To hate every day of your life making barely enough to pay your student loans while some other guy you don't even know gets rich off you? I just don't understand why I'm alive if this is all there is. How can you sit every day in your office and pretend to do a good job if your job is boring and meaningless?
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Old 03-08-11, 01:40 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

So you desire something in the field?
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Old 03-08-11, 01:41 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

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So you desire something in the field?
what do you mean? what field?
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Old 03-08-11, 01:45 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

You desire the application of science, so I thought maybe something really getting out there in the field kinda like a land surveyor but on a different scale as opposed to focusing on theoretical constructs. Do you know what I mean?
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Old 03-08-11, 01:46 AM
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Re: Career disappointment

Your job ISN'T everything. Your value is not tied to income and credit rating. You don't have too sell your soul to a job.

Most of our society expects you to be a good little cog in the machinery. Go to school, go to college, get a job, pay your loans, buy a house, be a good little minion, don't step outside the lines, and slowly wither away until the machine has sucked everything that they can out of you then tosses you aside to make room to the next victim.

It's wrong. However, I believe that you can 'use' the system to your advantage when you figure out what your real priorities and what your real hopes and dreams are. I've never had a job that helped my grow as a person or made any profound impact on society. Usually, if I'm trying to find fulfillment in a job, it's quite the opposite as far as personal growth goes. It's soul crushing.

But if know what's really important to me, and societies expectations be damned, I can handle the soul crushing, tedious work knowing that it's funding things that are important.

It irritating to me that some many of the self help books out there, including many of the ADHD related books, are geared toward giving you coping skills to function at work while ignoring that a persons worth and value isn't based in their job, but who they are as a person with unique gifts, talents, views, and relationships.

Instead of looking at your resume to figure out who you are and what you have to offer, maybe it's time to take stock of who you are are as far as your dreams and visions go. Not just careers focus, but who do you want to be to your kids and grandchildren.
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