Career Choices

I have talked very little about my career choice since starting this blog.  I know I’ve mentioned becoming a teacher in my “priorities” blogs, but I’ve questioned this career choice since I majored in elementary education for 2 semesters back in college.  I keep coming back to it though; I don’t know if that says something.

Career choices overwhelmingly influence how you spend your time, how exhausted you are, and how slow paced your lifestyle will be.  Teaching is a great slow paced career because you most likely get summers and major holidays off from work. I love the whole concept. Yes, you bust your butt 9-10 months out of the year working with students.  It is a great career for anyone who likes the idea of built in breaks.

And it’s a great career choice for me because working with kids is rewarding (even though it is exhausting), I love reading and writing, and staring at a cubicle in a windowless office all day is a miserable endeavor. I planned on easing into teaching and getting more experience by becoming a substitute teacher first.

Yet, the certification tests, fingerprinting and all of the other requirements seem daunting, and every time I seriously start thinking of teaching as a career I freak out and back away.

Last night, however, it occurred to me that I need to get a full-time job pronto. I’m 25 (about to be 26) and I haven’t had a full time job since I first graduated college in traumatic 2008. I’ve only had two full-time jobs (ever) and both laid me off in less than 4 months.  The summer of 2009 I started my part-time job hopscotch.  Needless to say, I’ve been rather pessimistic about the job market.

I’m still not sold that a full-time job is the way to go in terms of the slow life. Full-time jobs may provide some benefits (literally), but I’ve found that full-time fosters an overwhelming commitment to work. There is nothing wrong with loving your job or enjoying what you do, but I know people who answer work emails, call into meetings, and tell people to call them when they are on vacation.  I don’t want that.

That doesn’t change the fact that I’ll need the full-time income come January.  Mistakes in my past require me to work to pay for them.  And I didn’t pay for grad school with cash, either. I’m going to have to suck-it-up and work a little more than I’d like to for a while.  I will not, however, work myself into complete exhaustion. Hourly, wage jobs seem to encourage that.  The best thing I can do is minimize consumption of goods and services, and maximize my saving potential.

So, I came up with a solution to my “I need a full-time job” problem:  First what I’ll do is get work as a writer.  I should have no problem finding a “writing job” because my master’s degree is in, you guessed it, writing. After I’ve settled, I’ll slowly obtain the requirements to become a substitute teacher. That way, I can work on them when I have time, not when I’m focused on other things.  Once I’ve fulfilled all of the requirements, come November after I’ve defended, I can look for a part-time substituting job. The idea would be, by January, to earn full-time income by working both jobs part-time.  I like the variety it provides.

Both career options offer flexibility.  Substitute/full-time teachers are off in the summer and during holidays, and writers can often work from home.  I get the best of both worlds…

Sorry about the super late post everyone.  It seems I may have too much on my plate and need to cut back even further. New changes in my life coming about soon.

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