Tuesday, 18 October 2016

A Dream Job Really Isn't Everything

So I turn 21 in less than three weeks - there's nothing quite like a milestone birthday to make you question how far behind everyone else you are. Alternatively you could just look at Facebook, no doubt that will remind you how far you haven't come. It's also a brilliant excuse to drink your bodyweight in Porn Star Martinis and relish in being young, free and most definitely single.

When I left college 3 years ago I felt lost because for once in my life I had nothing even remotely productive to do, I missed waking up at seven in the morning and having somewhere to be. I missed the struggle of having to finish an essay at one in the morning the night before it was due in, I actually missed being a student in education because back then if anyone asked me where my life was going I could at least pretend to have it all figured out. The only real stress I had to deal with was if the guy in my English class fancied me and if I had enough money to afford a McDonald's lunch.

Like I said, STRESS.

Fast forward 3 years and I'm still just as confused and completely clueless.

Feeling like I'm 28, 5876 steps behind everyone else isn't exactly how I imagined starting my grown-up life. I mean I kinda wanted my own kitten, a Fiat 500 and a whopping great load of savings by now, at the moment I can just about afford my fortnightly Pumpkin Spiced Latte. Oh and my card has been blocked so I currently have to withdraw cash to pay for everything and when I did call up the bank they said they didn't believe I was who I said I was so apparently I'm also a fraud.

If this is adult life then I don't want it thank you very much.

Then I look at my big sister, she doesn't have a Fiat 500 or a kitten but she has her ideal grown up job, the one she spent 9 grand to study for, she has a pretty lush looking salary and she's just put a deposit on a 2 bed house.


But then does she know what SEO stands for? No she does not.
So, I'm not completely failing.

My friends are all pretty much in their chosen fields, they have prospects and a 'grown-up forever job' as I like to call them. I on the other hand am working two jobs both in customer service, one without even a contract and one answering phone calls regarding people's green bin waste collection dates, sounds like the start of a sad film but honestly I am pretty damn happy, not because I am in my perfect career but because I've finally accepted that the grass isn't always greener.

In my eyes dream jobs are a bit of a fallacy.

I refuse to believe that everyday is like waking up on clouds and petting unicorns, regardless of how much you love what you do you will probably still have a face like a slapped arse when your alarm goes off at 6 am and you have to leave the warmth of your duvet. We are all pretty basic beings and we like the same things regardless of whether we are a senior account manager or a checkout assistant. We like financial security, we like a purpose and we like to be needed. You can get all of those things from a pretty average job that isn't in your ideal field of work even if it doesn't pay you a hella fortune or require a masters degree.

Are you earning money? Yes? Well then you are still nailing life.
If you're not then get off Netflix and go and do yourself proud, Gilmore Girls can wait.
I know, I can't believe I just said that either.

I waited a year and a half to land myself my dream job in what I thought I really wanted, turns out I really bloody hated it.  I hated it so much I cried every night when I got in and pulled far too many sickies because I just couldn't face it. That was the reality of my "dream" so I left, I worked for one last week, I had a lovely little send off and I even cried but not because I was desperately sad to leave, I was just sad that it hadn't been everything I had hoped for and more. Luckily I had my part time job at my local theatre to fall back on, they took me back after 3 months and they saved my arse from not being able to afford my car insurance, it's still not my forever but I'm pretty grateful that it is my now.

My dad then said "So when are you going to get a proper job again?"
Since then I have made a conscious effort to never ask him for a single penny or if I do I vow to have it paid back in less than a week. I may work a part time job in a Theatre serving tea and coffee but I work bloody hard and no one will ever tell me otherwise. I am fed up with young people feeling like we are letting people down, letting ourselves down. It takes an experience like that to be grateful for what I do have, I now work two jobs, one Monday to Friday and one part time as and when I can. Working in a call centre, as much as it doesn't relate to journalism or working with kids, it's well paid and local. It also means I can save as much as possible so I can treat myself to the things I really want like my own laptop and a decent blogging camera, I can also start to put away savings for my future.

It doesn't mean I'm giving up, I will still be a writer one day, just not now and that is absolutely fine.
Let's not forget J K Rowling didn't get her first book published until she was 32, just because it doesn't feel like it's ever going to happen, it doesn't mean it won't.

The moment you become at peace with the idea that you aren't going to just fall into your ideal career as soon as you hit your 20's the moment you can just enjoy whatever life throws at you. Chasing for perfection is all well and good but please consider that you may never actually find 'perfection', I certainly didn't. Walking into an amazing job in London with such a bright future ahead of me should have been the making of me but it wasn't, it made me question everything I had been working for since I held my A Level results in my hand and became an adult.

I thought I would be content and that life would all fall into place once I got my role as a PR account manager but it didn't. I thought my 3 week internship at Grazia magazine would give me so much confidence but instead it kinda swallowed me up.  So I started this blog and I write for free, I work two jobs dealing with shitty customers and I never have get much time to myself but I am happy, genuinely happy and that is worth more than any swanky job in London.