Most people work just hard enough not to get fired and get paid just enough money not to quit.” – George Carlin
A regularly debated topic to get a job or to go self employed. I always found it interesting though how people (including myself in the past) who are for the ‘job as an employee’ side always use safety and a peace of mind as reasons why you should remain at a ‘stable job’. Which leads us straight into reason number 1:
1. IT’S NOT SECURE.
Contrary to what most people have been led to believe getting a full time job as an employee is not secure. You can’t have security if you don’t have control of the situation and in business, employees have the least control. “Your Fired”, there it is, two words and your entire income has been cut off, the business had to make sacrifices and it’s all out of your control, does that sounds like a safe and secure position to put your self in? I go into realistic alternatives later…
Market turbulence affects all organisations and all industries. In more dynamic and turbulent conditions there is no such thing as long term stability. People get tossed around from place to place, companies go under, new companies emerge, and this cycle happens increasingly more often.
Even machines are replacing people through automation. Eliminating the need for “human resource” as “machine resource” takes over– self-serve checkouts at retail stores is just one example. Employment came as a result of Industrial Age and as we transform into Information Age this evolution in the way we work is naturally going to happen. Is your job something that could be automated now or in the future?
“We can create the ultimate job security by becoming less dependent on the organisation for which we work and more dependent on our own resources.” – Bo Bennett
2. LOSS OF TIME, YOUR MOST VALUABLE ASSET
“The most dangerous risk of all is trading all of your time not doing the things that you love on the bet that you’ll be able to buy the time to do it later.”
How does actually living only one third of your life sound?
There are 24 hours in a day. On average you use eight hours for sleep. You trade another eight of those hours for money doing things you likely don’t enjoy. And so you are left with 8 hours per day to spend exercising your freedoms, that’s before you’ve commuted, eaten and watched a few hours of mindless television. When compounded over your lifetime, you will have actually only lived one third of your experience on Earth.
Trading hours for money is placing monetary value on a priceless commodity. What is your time worth to you? Remember, you can always get more money, but you can never get more time.
“Find a job that you like and you add five days to every week.”
3. LIMITING YOUR LIFE EXPERIENCE
Getting a job to gain experience has some merit but ask yourself if you are actually learning anything new as opposed to becoming stagnant in your position repeating the same tasks over and over again. That’s limiting experience and time that could be better invested into a new skill set. For example, getting a job to gain experience is a bit like saying you should play golf to get experience playing golf. You gain experience from living, regardless of whether you have a job or not. A job only gives you experience at that job, but you gain ”experience” doing just about anything. What if your limited skill set ever becomes obsolete, then your experience won’t be worth anything. In fact, ask yourself what the experience you’re gaining right now will be worth in 20-30 years. Will your job even exist then? Will machines replace it?
Trust not what inspires other members of society to choose a career. Trust what inspires you. From this decision alone will come over a third of your satisfaction or misery in your life. – from The Lazy Person’s Guide to Success
4. YOU BECOME DOMESTICATED
Not only does full time employment limit your time and experience, it also limits your creativity, full potential and income. Unless you are on a competitive commission basis (which can be even more stressful when lack of sales is out of your control) then your income is limited not by your performance but by a pre-agreed pay cheque. So then, from here arises the obvious problem of lack of motivation to work harder in a position that gives you a fixed return. Sure, you can beg for a pay rise, for your time to be valued more, which normally involves the expansion of responsibility (which really means more work to do) but that’s the point, you have to beg.
The infinite potential within you is crushed and constrained into the activities your master orders you to do, limiting creativity and stopping you from obtaining control over your own income.
Steve Pavlina said that “Getting a job is like enrolling in a human domestication program. You learn how to be a good pet. Does your master reward your good behavior? Do you get told what you need to wear? Do you get disciplined if you fail to obey your master’s commands? Look around you. Really look. What do you see? Are these the surroundings of a free human being?”
5. YOU PROBABLY DON’T ENJOY IT
Trading time for money doing something you love to do is entirely worth it and there are innumerable examples of people that genuinely do but it seems they are generally a minority. A recent study even showed as many as 70% of Americans hate their line of work, so there’s clearly a trend here.
Ask yourself, is my only goal in this job to generate income? If so, I feel that solely trading your time for money by doing something that you do not love could very well be the biggest mistake to be later regretted I have ever heard of. In our article ‘top 5 regrets of people dying’ from elderly people on their deathbeds I quote “All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.” as the second biggest regret of their lives.
Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. – Confucius
Still want a full time job?
Social conditioning often promotes alot of defensiveness when it comes to discussing this topic and that is expected. We’re challenging your choice in how you spend 1/3 of your time and challenging the current system that your survival and livlihood entirely depends on. But consider that if the above didn’t have a grain of truth to it, you wouldn’t have an emotional reaction at all.
“This is only a reminder of what you already know. If any of this makes you mad, that’s a step in the right direction. Anger is a higher level of consciousness than apathy, so it’s a lot better than being numb to the situation. Any emotion — even confusion — is better than apathy. If you work through your feelings instead of repressing them, you’ll soon emerge on the doorstep of courage. And when that happens, you’ll have the will to actually do something about your situation and start living like the powerful human being you were meant to be instead of living through a domesticated mindset that’s limiting your entire existence.” – Steve Pavlina
So what are the alternatives?
Realise that you earn income by providing value — not time – so find a way to provide your best value to others, and charge a fair price for it. One of the simplest and most accessible ways is to start your own business. Whatever work you’d otherwise do via employment, find a way to provide the same value directly to those who will benefit most from it. It takes a bit more time to get going, but your freedom is easily worth the initial investment of time and energy.
Another is to forget the money and ask yourself, for example, would I be happier earning less money in a job I really enjoy doing? One example is recently a friend quit her job as a banking clerk to work with the RSPCA helping injured animals part time, a job that she finds far more rewarding and which she’s far happier with, despite a large pay cut. Additionally, she now uses her extra time saved from full time employment to start developing her own business.
One of the greatest fears you’ll face the feeling you may not have any real value to offer others. That being an employee and getting paid per hour is the best you can do. That you just aren’t worth that much. This line of thinking is all just part of your conditioning. It’s absolute nonsense. As you begin to dump this limiting mindset, you’ll soon recognise that we all have the ability to provide enormous value to others that people will gladly pay for. There’s only one thing that prevents you from seeing this truth — fear and do you know what fear stands for? False-Evidence-Appearing-Real. Fear of an experience that hasn’t happened. All you really need is the courage to be yourself. Your real value is rooted in who you are, not what you do.
‘There is only one success – to be able to spend your life in your own way.” Christopher Morley