So I came across an article about how there were too many K-5 teachers & not enough teaching positions and the question arose in my mind: Why study something that you know will not pay off?
I remember when I was applying to college (many moons ago) my father always warned me to not major in underwater basket weaving. Yes, because it’s not a real major but also because it’s a profession that isn’t highly valued in this society. So in the same respect if you know that philosophy isn’t a highly valued field why major in it?
Yes, there are plenty of majors that were popular 20-30 years ago that may not be as relevant now (think archaeology, library science, etc.) but back then people knew that there would a job waiting for them. Right now the unemployment/under-employment rate for fresh college graduates is over 50%. I mean, let’s face it – the economy has been in the toilet since at least 2008. And everyone knows that bad economies don’t just turn around overnight. So those who are just now graduating (who entered college around 2008) must have known that when they graduate they might not have a job waiting for them in their field. And those who entered college after 2008 have had time to change majors to something more relevant. Of course no can tell the future or when the job market will pick up. But until it does, wouldn’t it be fair to say you should secure your future by majoring in something more mainstream instead?
Sure, it’s great to follow your passion but if your passion can’t pay the bills when you graduate, then maybe you should consider pursuing something that will instead.
So my girlfriend called me crying because the man she was dating doesn’t make enough money. I know what you’re thinking – who complains about how much money a man brings to the table unless they’re superficial? Well, when you have aspirations of being a stay at home wife & mother and you’re with someone whose finances can’t support that you’re not being superficial at all. You’re being realistic.
So how much money did this man make? I asked my friend exactly how low this man’s salary was and she told me that he only made $150,000 a year. Yes, only $150,000. At first I laughed (at my friend) for being so ridiculous. But then I really thought about it. To a lot of people, that may seem like a lot of money. And considering that the median household income in this country is around $50,000, a $150,000 salary is a lot. But is it enough?
You see my friend is a highly educated, attractive, down-to-earth woman with a career of her own. Her dream has always been to build her career but slow things down after getting married. She has wants to trade her briefcase for an apron after settling down. She has also maintained that she does not want a life where she has to “settle” or sacrifice just to be a stay-at-home mother. With that said, it is very important that she find someone who can support her current lifestyle and still have enough income to raise a family. Not to mention that she lives in Los Angeles where the cost of living is extraordinarily high (the average house costs over $400,000 – and that is just for an small to average size home). And while $150,000 may seem like a hefty salary, once they purchase a home & have a few children, it’s really not that much money after all.
Is my friend wrong for complaining about his salary? Is she wrong for wanting to maintain the lifestyle that she has already developed for herself? Is she wrong for relying on his salary to support their future family? Or is she just wrong for questioning when that salary just isn’t enough?
After all, sometimes even a lot just isn’t enough.
A woman I know recently decided to go from working full time to part time so that she could stay home & spend more time with her family. Not wanting to completely be a stay-at-home mom, she decided that the only way to sustain her career would be to keep one foot in the working world and one foot at home. I’m sure her husband is glad to have her around the house more & her children will benefit from increased attention, but where does that leave her career?
Currently, the unemployment rate is hovering right around 8%. Depending on what part of the country you live in that percentage may be significantly higher. After working long & hard to build a solid career and then starting a family, you are now willing to possibly through that away? It’s one thing to start working part-time after not working at all, because of a company mandate, or if you have special circumstances (disability, spouse is deployed to another country, etc.). But to purposely cut back your working hours and your household income right when you might need it the most? Some of the women who do this are the same women who complain about not moving up in their careers. Of course, returning to full time employment is always an option but they should be glad to even have a job, given that so many people (with families) are still looking for work.
Family should always come first, but is it worth sacrificing your career as a woman? Especially in such an unstable economy? People are being laid off left & right and pink slips are becoming more popular than pay slips, so why risk providing less for your family, or at the very least why risk not being able to provide at all?
It’s so ironic to me that decades & decades after women fighting to work outside the home and earn equal pay (although we’re still not quite there), we now have women who are fighting to stay at home and NOT work at all. I can’t say that I agree with this woman’s decision. I think that she should continue to work full time and raise her family at the same time.
I’m not saying it will be easy but if she doesn’t really want her job someone else will.
I’m bound to repeat the same mistakes if I don’t learn from them. How many times have you done the same thing expecting different results? According to Einstein, that’s called insanity.
I’ve dealt with this so many times – situation after situation would occur but instead of making better decisions, I would repeat my efforts thinking that everyone else needed to change, not me.
Here’s a prime example: In an effort to be more active in my community I volunteer for various events and always get so involved that I end up overworked. I usually get asked to either help raise money, solicit other volunteers or assist with clean up duties. While I don’t mind helping out, when I volunteer for one event it seems like I’m asked to volunteer more & more. And since it’s hard for me to say no to a good cause, I end up spending more time on other people’s activities than I do working on my own. And this cycle continues. After repeatedly being overwhelmed by “over volunteering”, I am now learning to say no more often.
As long as we continue on the same path, we will continue to make the same mistakes. But when we decide to change directions our past stays in the past. After all, that is what’s meant by the expression “live and learn.” I am now ready to make new mistakes, not the same ones from my past.
My pastor always says, “I see you in the future, and you look much better than you do right now”. Don’t let the mistakes of your past keep you from having a great future.
I understand the importance of showing up on time. Whether it’s heading to church, work or a social outing, arriving on time (or even early) shows respect for other people’s time and allows you to get the most out of the event that you’re attending.
With that said, I actually think that there are many more benefits to showing up late than most people think. Here are my top reasons for showing up late:
- I don’t have to deal with awkward chit chat with strangers. I don’t have to mix & mingle with anyone before the event begins if I’m not there
- I get a lot of exercise. Arriving late forces me to park in some obscure parking space far away from the event. The further I have to park, the more I have to walk and the more exercise I get
- I get better seats. Late people always get ushered directly to the front of the room since all of the other seats are usually taken
- Arriving late means that there’s a possibility that there are no more programs or handouts, so I’m not stuck with any flyers that I’ll end up throwing out anyway.
- I miss the non-essential parts of the program. All of the announcements & introductions, etc. have concluded by the time I arrive
- There’s no waiting to be seated. Since the program has already begun, I’m usually shown to my seat right away
- I get to show off my outfit. Everyone is looking me up & down as I walk down the aisle to my seat (in the front, no doubt)
- I get to make new friends when I am forced to squeeze by you to get to an empty seat. Since it’s the perfect opportunity to make eye contact, I usually greet these people and offer a friendly greeting right before I step on their toes
- No one ever expects me or asks me to take notes because they know that I won’t be there to hear the program in its entirety.
- Other people show up late too. And I wouldn’t want them to feel bad, now would I?
A male friend of mine was telling me of a conversation he had with one of his guy friends about the cost of dating. He figured that in one year he spent close to $10,000 in dating alone, between dinners, the movies, taking trips, black-tie events, gifts, concerts, etc. Now he may have been exaggerating a bit, but the discussion continued on about how expensive dating can be and how women don’t have to spend hardly anything. I adamantly disagreed with this and explained to my male friend that women have to spend money too. Dating isn’t free for us either.
After this conversation, I started to really think about how much I spend on dating. On average, men spend around $50 on a date – depending on where he lives – give or take. As a woman, my money is mostly spent on preparing for the date not to mention the dates that I do occasionally pay for. Hair appointments and nail appointments can cost over $100 easily. Not to mention new outfits, shoes & accessories. My friend was quick to point out that buying new clothes for a date isn’t necessary; therefore I couldn’t count that as a “dating expense”. I told him that it does count because although we women can wear the same clothes after a date, the new outfit would not have been purchased had it not been for that date. For example, if a man takes a woman out to dinner & spends $25 on her meal & $25 on his meal he won’t say the date only costs $25. Instead, he’ll say that the date was $50 – the total cost of the dinner. The argument is that he would not have spent $25 on his meal unless he was out on that date. So, it’s the same thing with a woman buying new clothes for a date. And as for getting my hair & nails done, it may not be necessary but it’s something that men certainly enjoy seeing.
And there’s more to it than just money. Women take a lot of time getting ready than men (between hair, makeup and the like) so not only does it cost us more money, we lose more time preparing for the date. And we all know that time is money.
So gentlemen, yes dating is expensive for women too!