1. M. Adkins says:

    I think we all need to go through those experiences. Not only does it make you appreciate what we have when we are done with those types of jobs but also to make us realize that we need to take our education/work experience seriously otherwise that could be what we end up doing as adults, or worse yet working in the government (just kidding)!

    I would make the argument that the vast majority of adults hate or at best tolerate their jobs. I cannot imagine not liking what I spend 1/3 of my day at. Everyone always says to me “you’re so lucky you have always enjoyed what you do for a living, I hate my job etc etc.” Well lucky has nothing to do with it, it was because I knew what I wanted to do and a big part of that was finding out what I didn’t want to do.

    So there you go, a Half-lifer point of view.

  2. V. Washington says:

    Sometimes I think, well I should have done this or should have done that. Yet most of my jobs have been quite interesting and challenging. Most have brought me into contact with a good group of people. I have learned much and enjoyed it so far. True, some of this work may not be what I would spend my free time doing but overall, like many others, I am satisfied so far.

    A lot has to do with your attitude and one of the most important criteria is self-improvement. If you reach a stage where you become stagnant in your work, don’t blame the job, see if you can change it – or move on and find something better.

    I came across a good piece of advice once: “Look for choices in all aspects of your life and try to be aware of them at all times”. I like that – keeping track of your options at all times forces you to think about and create opportunities. And as far as the ‘should have or could have’ – well the timing may not always be perfect but it is really never too late to go for it! Kick some butt!

  3. Mari McGrath says:

    Part of what bothers me about McJobs is that typically, you are a big fish in a small pond- and not in a good way. If you know how to do more than check email and use Word (hell, if you can use Excel you’re a superstar. Factor in Photoshop and you’re a Wunderkind) then people are overwhelmed by you. For me, it belittles my actual talents and skills. Excel is not a skill, its a tool. I could be an incredible asset to a company, if only I could get to where I need to be. Unfortunately, it seems that to get there, no matter how kick-ass your spreadsheets may be, it requires you to start at the bottom. That’s my other beef- whats the deal with my superstar education if it isn’t really opening doors for me?

  4. alli says:

    Yes, that’s exactly what gets under my skin about the cons of a McJob too. I’ve always found it odd when I’m the only one in the office who knows how to mail merge or animate a power point presentation – it’s a weird duality of being the most skilled/experienced person in the office with a particular set of tools but at the same time being the inexperienced, bottom-rung office monkey who has to clean out the shredder. I definitely agree with some of the other folks who made the “you have to start somewhere, grin and bear it” point, but given the fact that some of us are coming to these entry-level jobs with superstar education (as Mari put it), and especially because we’re coming from institutions who are constantly reminding us how valuable our education is and to celebrate our valued position in the academic world, it’s a big, degrading and questionably unecessary shift. I guess we’ll just have to seek out careers that provide a balance between the two?

  5. Jim S. says:

    I’ve done it before part time when I was in High school. I refuse to do it again – I won’t have the energy to pursue my actual goal anymore if I have to do it again. I especially won’t do it full time.

    No one’s hiring in my field, and the few that are want prior experience. A part time job from almost 10 years ago with nothing else but freelance crap that didn’t work out doesn’t say much, in fact, it makes them raise questions about holes.

    Makes me want to lose it on them, because if I admit the truth that I have a mental condition, no way in hell will I get hired.

    Everyone else says grin and bear it, but that’s the problem. I CAN’T deal with service jobs. No one wants a shelf stocker, they want someone who deals with other people.

    I’m not strong or healthy enough for most physical labor, either. I honestly feel a bit of envy, rather than the stereotypical contempt, for those of you who are.

    All I have is my fucked up brain, and no one wants that.

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