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Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 05:50 PM
Serious question.

"It's basically impossible unless you're either interesting in boring things or outrageously lucky" is an acceptable answer, although one that's already occurred to me, obviously.

Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 05:56 PM
I wouldn't mind so much if all areas of human endeavour were like professional sports, in which success is very largely proportional to some kind of product of natural flair and effort put in. You're never going to be a famous (let alone rich) footballer if you're shit at football. Some guys might get more ancillary sponsorship work if they happen to charismatic, good-looking or whatever but someone who can't kick a ball and gets tired after five minutes of running around is never going to play for MUFC.

But what kills me is that we live in a world in which Katie Hopkins is a successful columnist, E. L. James is a successful novelist and Daniel Radcliffe is a successful actor. And Michael Gove is a cabinet MP!

craner
30-03-2016, 07:34 PM
I thought you had a good career designing ballistic missiles in cool European cities?

mixed_biscuits
30-03-2016, 08:24 PM
You could get a job that allows you to do *something else* that's interesting while you're at work.

luka
30-03-2016, 08:26 PM
I thought you had a good career designing ballistic missiles in cool European cities?

Lol!

vimothy
30-03-2016, 08:50 PM
Start with what you're interested in and go from there.

mixed_biscuits
30-03-2016, 09:15 PM
Or start with something you know little about and, having learnt on the job, either then find it interesting or find discovering its uninterestingness interesting - "Who would have thought that captaining a team to its first Champions League triumph would have occasioned such ennui" - and leave to repeat the process.

The more ignorant you are of the particulars of your prospective role, the better; be prepared to convey supremely confident indifference at the interview stage.

Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 09:34 PM
Start with what you're interested in and go from there.

Aaaargh! Come on man, is that meant to be helpful? My problem is I'm interested in far too many things. I'm a dilettante. Really, the way to be successful at most kinds of jobs is to be very good at one specific thing and not interested in other stuff, not very intelligent, even. Being interested in stuff just means you get bored quickly with the same thing over and over, which means being bored in about 99% of jobs.

And if you mean "interested in" in the sense of "enjoy doing" - well, I love the idea of making a living by writing short stories and/or knocking out tunes in Ableton, but honestly. It's 2016 and I'm 35 years old. It's not going to happen, is it?

Edit: if it achieves nothing else, at least this thread has awoken mixed_biscuits from his aeon-long slumber. Alright mate! How's things?

mixed_biscuits
30-03-2016, 09:41 PM
Edit: if it achieves nothing else, at least this thread has awoken mixed_biscuits from his aeon-long slumber. Alright mate! How's things?

Alright chap! Things are all well and good :D

Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 09:43 PM
Glad to hear it. I'm OK too, I guess, just a bit unthrilled about being out of work again and seeing all these fucking jobs ads that start with "Do you have a passion for .... ?!?!?!" like an excitable Labrador puppy that's trying to hump your leg, and thinking "No of course I fucking don't, you'd have to be a lunatic to be 'passionate' about any of that bollocks."

craner
30-03-2016, 09:44 PM
Wait, Mr Tea, from what I can gather you have advanced scientific (or mathematical or something) training. Are you saying there's nothing more interesting you could do with that than write short stories? I mean, it's different for us Humanities graduates, lumbered with useless degrees that offer no realistic or interesting career prospects outside of teaching or publishing.

craner
30-03-2016, 09:47 PM
MI6 are hiring. They've put ads in The Guardian.

I once answered an ad for MI5 from the back of The Times, and got through to Round 2 of 6. It's a good story that I often tell at parties. I was too thick to get past Round 2, thankfully. But Round 2 was absolutely fascinating.

DannyL
30-03-2016, 09:52 PM
I can suggest some depressing but interesting reading if you are interested? Lanier's "Who Owns the Future?" and "Deep Work" by Cal Newport. The former suggests we are all fucked so should design a system that insists on basic restitution from big companies for sharing our information (good luck with that), the latter identifying an exclusive skill that's in demand and working hard at it. Weirdly enough I read the first chapter of this (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Chaos-Protocols-Techniques-Navigating-Economic/dp/0738744719) on Google books the other day and he's banging the same drum which is weird, but interesting for an occult book. His solution is to become a chaos magician which maybe a career shift too far for you.

My partner said something interesting recently (not implying this has a one off - she says interesting stuff literally all the time, but this was germane to the topic in hand) - we are most of us, only 10 years or so into our careers. We have maybe another 20-30 years to go so now is the time to think about retraining and considering your options (this is part of my reasoning behind starting an MA this year).

Otherwise, start agitating for Basic Income?

Edit - the first chapter of that book is very good actually, well worth reading. Which is not something I would say about 99% of occult books.

Benny B
30-03-2016, 09:56 PM
If everyone made a living doing what they are interested in, who would do all the boring shitty jobs?

DannyL
30-03-2016, 10:01 PM
[QUOTE=craner;323140realistic or interesting career prospects outside of teaching or publishing.[/QUOTE]

With the first of these career avenues rapidly being made more worse and worse.

Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 10:01 PM
Wait, Mr Tea, from what I can gather you have advanced scientific (or mathematical or something) training. Are you saying there's nothing more interesting you could do with that than write short stories? I mean, it's different for us Humanities graduates, lumbered with useless degrees that offer no realistic or interesting career prospects outside of teaching or publishing.

Well I've got a degree and an advanced degree (not a doctorate) in physics from a half-decent school so yeah, I'm better off than if I had a BA in Internet Studies from the Uni of Southeast Bedfordshire. Clearly I should count my blessings (and I don't mean that sarcastically). But the last three jobs I've had have been in engineering and it really doesn't enthuse me at all, I mean I like technology but I don't really give a toss about it. Pure science is out of the window since I fucked up my PhD and in any case, from what I can gather academia is becoming more stressful and less rewarding with every year that passes, at least in the UK, and I'm a complete klutz when it comes to programming so I can't do anything remotely interesting with software.

Edit: plus the mental straightjacket of having been academically successful at school is revealed by your concentrating on choice of degree subject - choices us mid-thirties types made half a lifetime ago! - I mean, I'm not knocking you, it's hard for anyone who's been to university (and finished it, and got a degree they're not ashamed of) not to think in those terms, and I do it myself. Then I think about my brother, who's a hugely successful self-employed entrepreneur, who left education at 18 with a couple of A-levels and a GNVQ, or whatever. But then, he's extraordinarily skilled in a particular, and highly desirable, applied discipline. I'd fucking love to be self-employed but the fact I don't have an iota of entrepreneurial acumen kind of puts the kibosh on that.

I love writing and thinking about science but then we're back to the problem of trying to make money from writing, which is all when and good you've got the right combination of chops, bankable choice of subject, drive to succeed and blind luck, but really, "Unemployed 35-year-old harbours laughable dream of 'making it' as a writer" is just all too plausible as an Onion/Daily Mash article. I mean, I've got this friend who does freelance journalism for a living. She's been published in 'proper' papers and magazines, knows plenty of impressive and influential people, co-authored a book about civil liberties under the Blair government before she was 30 and wrote a children's book a couple of years ago that was very well received, won awards I think. And she does shift work in her local to keep up with her mortgage.

Sorry, I know I'm whingeing and things could be far worse, and also that - the small minority born into select socio-economic circles aside - no-one just gets handed a glittering career on a plate.

craner
30-03-2016, 10:05 PM
As you get closer to 40 that sort of optimistic thinking gets harder to stomach. When I turned 30 I panicked and basically went mad, attempted to become a teacher because I decided I needed a good pension. Then I was faced with the job, the dreadful English syllabus that I was expected to impart with enthusiasm, and realised that I had absolutely no interest in teaching children anything. It was an awful moment, in a classroom, struggling with a shit PowerPoint display I'd cobbled together the night before fuelled by desperate bottles of Shiraz, and finally thinking, "well if you're not interested in Shakespeare, kids, that's your problem." It was the wrong job for me.

But I fluked into the right one 2 years later, after a lot of pain and sacrifice, and in the middle of a recession. It's not easy, though, so you can't afford to be airy about it. I would stick to science, Tea, make ballistic missiles in cool European cities and write short stories about that in your spare time. Do the Michael Lewis thing, two sets of books, your job and the creative material you can leach from it. It's more interesting to be a ballistic missile engineer or an investment banker who writes brilliantly in their spare time than being an unemployed and unpaid, failing writer.

mixed_biscuits
30-03-2016, 10:10 PM
Become a data scientist w/machine learning freelancer, work six months a year and write in the other six.

Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 10:11 PM
If everyone made a living doing what they are interested in, who would do all the boring shitty jobs?

ROBOTS!!!!!!

craner
30-03-2016, 10:12 PM
OK, got your last post, but with a few adjustments, I stick by my advice. I empathise, obviously, I have been in a similar position. You have to adjust your expectations in your 30s. I've hated my 30s, they've been a painful wasteland, but it is still early enough to change while you are still relatively young. But you have to choose more carefully, because it seems to me (still) that by 40 the die is cast for the rest of your life.

Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 10:13 PM
ROBOTS!!!!!!

OK, so robots can't do everything that's boring/unpleasant/dangerous/emotionally draining (yet). But there could easily be enough money made available to make these jobs a lot more lucrative than they are, which would be something at least.

Mr. Tea
30-03-2016, 10:23 PM
I would stick to science, Tea, make ballistic missiles in cool European cities and write short stories about that in your spare time. Do the Michael Lewis thing, two sets of books, your job and the creative material you can leach from it. It's more interesting to be a ballistic missile engineer or an investment banker who writes brilliantly in their spare time than being an unemployed and unpaid, failing writer.

I dunno if you're being funny with the missiles thing, but not wanting to design missiles is why I'm unemployed at the moment.

And yes, of course if you're going to do something that doesn't hugely interest you intellectually it's obviously better if it's well paid, because then you can at least go on decent holidays while you write the novel that (by rights) would make you the next David Foster Wallace if it were ever to be published. And face the prospect of old age with an attitude of something other than panic terror.

craner
30-03-2016, 10:25 PM
If I sound glib, I don't mean to. I'm being as serious as I can be. I've seen a few 40-somethings quit good jobs to pursue their, for example, "passion for script-writing" - invariably they have then spent every night in the pub and every morning in the gym, with a fortnightly stop at the Job Centre to collect their JSA payments while lying about their non-existent Asda job application.

craner
30-03-2016, 10:27 PM
I feel a bit like your Dad, talking some sense into you.

craner
30-03-2016, 10:31 PM
If I was you, I would've designed missiles. And then written a Bellow-esque novel about the anxieties and sex life of an average ballistic missile engineer in a cool European city, an updated Scandinavian version of 'The Dean's December'.

craner
30-03-2016, 10:36 PM
With added missiles.

HMGovt
30-03-2016, 10:49 PM
If I was you, I would've designed missiles. And then written a Bellow-esque novel about the anxieties and sex life of an average ballistic missile engineer in a cool European city, an updated Scandinavian version of 'The Dean's December'.

That's similar to the plot of Youth by Coetzee.

"At 18 he might have been a poet. Now he is not a poet, not a writer, not an artist. He is a computer programmer, a 24year old computer programmer in a world where there are (yet) no 30 year old computer programmers. At 31 he is too old to be a programmer: one turns oneself into something else - some kind of businessman - or shoots oneself"

craner
30-03-2016, 10:53 PM
Conceptual irony that confirms the truth.

HMGovt
30-03-2016, 10:59 PM
Gentlemen, lady, we've been here before. Get in on the ring hustle.

http://www.dissensus.com/showthread.php?t=1630

craner
30-03-2016, 11:02 PM
Bitch.

luka
31-03-2016, 12:13 AM
It's all a load of shit whatever you do and never ever take advice from craner.

luka
31-03-2016, 12:18 AM
Don't start by thinking of something cool and interesting start from wanting to make a contribution to society. So no missiles, more CAB.

Mr. Tea
31-03-2016, 08:27 AM
If I was you, I would've designed missiles. And then written a Bellow-esque novel about the anxieties and sex life of an average ballistic missile engineer in a cool European city, an updated Scandinavian version of 'The Dean's December'.

I had this sort of epiphany last year when I went to see Psychic TV play live, and it occurred to me that I can be the sort of person who designs missile guidance systems for a living, or the sort of person who goes to Psychic TV gigs, but I can't be both. And I know which I'd rather be.

And I think I'd be flattering myself if I thought anyone wanted to read about either my anxieties or my sex life.

Mr. Tea
31-03-2016, 08:55 AM
Become a data scientist w/machine learning freelancer, work six months a year and write in the other six.

I'm attempting to teach myself Python, so this sort of thing could be an option.

I'll admit that pride has a certain amount to do with my antipathy towards a straightforward career in IT, as I'm well aware that I'd have to pay to go on a course to learn how to do stuff my (younger) brother could toss out in his sleep when he was 17. That, and that fact that I'm fundamentally not very good at it.

baboon2004
31-03-2016, 09:54 AM
It's a noble question, and do tell me when you find out the answer.

I think mixedbiscuits' suggestion is a good one, when generalised to: prioritise finding something you can do on a freelance basis, and get paid pretty well for doing so. The people I know who have managed to make a freelance career are probably the happiest with their working lives (excluding those who actually like simultaneous boredom and suffering for 12 months a year). It likely (but not necessarily) means compromising and going for something you don't find fascinating, but it gives you time to do the things you do find fascinating, obv.

Mr. Tea
31-03-2016, 10:48 AM
Thanks Hywel, some good stuff in there I think.

I think a big part of it is that quite a lot of things, including many that are not necessarily immediately obvious as 'fun' or 'cool' or 'interesting', can become interesting if you stick at them long enough. I don't mean that anyone who studies inheritance tax law for long enough suddenly has this Zen-like epiphany of awesomeness, more that it can be fun to be good at something but to get to this stage, you have to do the drudgey stuff first. Like how it can be pleasurable to drive a car on a country road (assuming you have the good fortune to find a stretch with no other traffic on it, which is a rare thing in southern England in 2016, but anyway) but long before you get to that level of competence, you have to complete the usually not-terribly-fun stuff of learning how to navigate roundabouts and parallel-park and all that bollocks.

I've had little glimpses of this in programming before so maybe there'll be a greater pay-off if I stick with the Python. Let's see.

Mr. Tea
31-03-2016, 12:11 PM
Become a data scientist

http://i.imgur.com/0jUFNH0.jpg

https://media.giphy.com/media/BAJEfS99cIUHS/giphy.gif

Woebot
01-04-2016, 10:48 AM
hi mr tea

well i must say craner has been very generous with his sound opinion

your idea to learn python seems like a good plan.

i have a pretty good idea for you too. i met a former engineer recently working in my business. he found engineering a bit boring - now he uses a software called *houdini*

http://www.sidefx.com/

(they have a free demo or educational license)

it's a pretty complex procedural special effects software. because it is as forbidding and geeky as it is people like me (from arts backgrounds) kinda stumble when they come to it - but there is a reasonably strong demand in the vfx community for houdini programmers.

if you taught yourself houdini i reckon you might be able to find yourself work in vfx. but don't ask me (perilous giving advice innit)- have a good look on google first.

one other thought - this might seem a bit rude or odd (!) or even blatantly obvious - but i wouldn't be in a hurry to get married. once you're hitched it becomes a lot harder to carve yourself a niche - especially as it sounds like you need to be mobile...

craner
01-04-2016, 08:03 PM
I must say, when I was on the skids Matt offered me kind words and support, a good idea and even a contact for it. I appreciated that a lot and have never forgotten it.

Mr. Tea
01-04-2016, 09:34 PM
Cheers Matt, you know that really is not something I'd ever have considered but it sounds pretty cool.

I've just watched the promotional video on their website and frankly I was sold by the Chinese lady with the nice boobs.

I'm not married but I've been with my girlfriend for about six years now and lived together for nearly three, so in effect I sort of am already.

craner
01-04-2016, 09:53 PM
"Nice boots", surely. Are you looking to be no-platformed, T? That's no way to get a job.

craner
01-04-2016, 10:04 PM
I'm not sure if Matt was being serious, but I was trying to be serious with my advice. My life, until the age of 35, was a series of catastrophic mistakes, but now I have a job I love, live by the sea, and own a house and a car. My love life is still a disaster, but that's always been the case. I was only trying to offer some pointers from what I've been through. Luke and I have diametrically opposed views as to what constitutes a successful or happy life, but we're still pals and agree on many other things. I just know I couldn't have continued to live in a London bedroom at the age of 40 writing prose poems nobody read and smashing cheap bottles of Bulgarian wine. I would have probably killed myself. There's no afterlife, you have to make something of and with what you have. Etc.

craner
01-04-2016, 10:14 PM
I thought about it at the age of 29, it sent me insane for a while, I made destructive choices that in the end proved creative, and came out OK. You have to think about the future, in lots of ways. One of my calculations, for example, and this was even before my father's young wife dropped dead unexpectedly, was, how will you take care of your elderly parents if you're on a crap wage and they need full time attention? Life gets more complex. What about if you fail to do yourself in with booze and fags? Do you want to be a destitute wreck with no income aged 70?

craner
01-04-2016, 10:16 PM
It's a deadly serious thing, life, if you take it seriously.

luka
01-04-2016, 10:23 PM
You're drunk Oliver.

craner
01-04-2016, 10:28 PM
Lucid.

craner
01-04-2016, 10:31 PM
Luke always knows when I'm posting drunk. And yet, I always manage full sentences with exquisite punctuation. And usually make more sense than when I'm sober.

droid
02-04-2016, 01:02 AM
We all know when youre posting drunk - every Friday night!

(And FWIW I wouldnt have it any other way)

Woebot
02-04-2016, 02:10 PM
I'm not sure if Matt was being serious Etc.

always serious :cool:

vimothy
07-04-2016, 10:36 PM
Aaaargh! Come on man, is that meant to be helpful?

Well, I thought it was funny.

vimothy
07-04-2016, 10:36 PM
It's sounds like you're already doing something reasonably interesting. You're literally a rocket scientist. But can you get a job fiddling around on Ableton all day? No! Do you really want one?

vimothy
07-04-2016, 10:43 PM
Incidentally (http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/feb/17/author-uk-dream-job):


A new poll for YouGov of almost 15,000 people found that 60% would like to be an author. The news may come as a surprise to the bestselling and critically acclaimed novelist Sebastian Faulks, who this weekend expressed his wish to find a job, writing in the Spectator that he has “now spent almost a quarter of a century alone in a garret staring at a blank wall, and I think it has driven me a bit mad”.

luka
07-04-2016, 10:53 PM
It's sounds like you're already doing something reasonably interesting. You're literally a rocket scientist. But can you get a job fiddling around on Ableton all day? No! Do you really want one?

Grass is always greener

Mr. Tea
07-04-2016, 11:05 PM
It's sounds like you're already doing something reasonably interesting. You're literally a rocket scientist.

Not any more, I would be dole scum if I was getting any dole.

Having said that, I was working on satellite parts a couple of years ago, so that was nearly rocket science.


But can you get a job fiddling around on Ableton all day? No! Do you really want one?

Yes!

Never mind, I know it's not going to happen. And I'm fully aware that lots of people with creative jobs (I mean actually creative, not writing advertising copy or crap like that) live pretty much hand-to-mouth and spend more of their time worrying about paying bills and rent than people with boring desk jobs who nonetheless have a contract and a salary.

mistersloane
11-04-2016, 02:13 PM
Everytime I've wanted a change of direction in my life, I read You Can't Win by Jack Black

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/You_Can%27t_Win_(book)

and two days later wake up in a gutter somewhere.

So don't take my advice.

vimothy
03-05-2016, 11:47 PM
Personally, I love my job. (I've had two decades of shit ones, though.)

Mr. Tea
03-05-2016, 11:49 PM
What do you do, vim?

It's starting to sound almost like it's just a case of waiting a certain number of years for a good, or at least better, job to turn up. But I'm fairly sure one isn't going to land in my lap without me actually going out and looking for it...

vimothy
03-05-2016, 11:54 PM
Developer.

For me it was about figuring what I liked that was close to what I did, and trying to move in that direction.

vimothy
03-05-2016, 11:55 PM
Eventually, I ended up somewhere I want to stay.

vimothy
04-05-2016, 12:03 AM
Are you applying for new jobs, then? What sort?

luka
04-05-2016, 08:35 AM
developer of what?

craner
04-05-2016, 09:13 AM
Yeah, that was a bit fucking gnomic wasn't it?

craner
04-05-2016, 09:14 AM
Developer of Situations

luka
04-05-2016, 09:36 AM
lol!

Mr. Tea
04-05-2016, 10:00 AM
Photographs, for hipsters who don't like digital cameras.

sadmanbarty
10-05-2016, 09:53 AM
As a wise man once said:


I'm convinced that anyone who tries to make work 'fun' can only be an utter, utter cunt. It's work, you do it for the money and then you go home. You're not there to have 'fun'.

Mr. Tea
10-05-2016, 11:36 AM
I'd happily settle for something that's reasonably stimulating and rewarding. I just don't really want to work somewhere that includes a soft play area in its list of employee perks and makes it compulsory to greet co-workers with a hi-5 and a hearty "YO!".

Corpsey
11-05-2016, 01:58 PM
I might be laughed out of the subforum for suggesting this but: academia?

Obviously there's a plethora of negatives to deal with and in many ways its less attractive than ever before but IF you manage to secure yourself a job you get paid well, spend quite a lot of time sitting around reading books, get to patronise the young, etc... A few of my friends are academics and they seem to be fairly happy with it.

Also, you're a funny/clever sort of guy, so maybe you could write comedy scripts or something?

My final suggestion is to become a writer of erotic fiction.

Obviously I'm projecting my own career frustrations/ambitions onto you here so take it with a pinch of don'tgiveafuck.

Mr. Tea
11-05-2016, 03:27 PM
I might be laughed out of the subforum for suggesting this but: academia?

Obviously there's a plethora of negatives to deal with and in many ways its less attractive than ever before but IF you manage to secure yourself a job you get paid well, spend quite a lot of time sitting around reading books, get to patronise the young, etc... A few of my friends are academics and they seem to be fairly happy with it.

I like the idea of academia but I don't have a PhD so I'd be starting from scratch (or at least, from the position I was in as a 22-year-old). And frankly the idea of going back into education, even funded education, as a 35-year-old with nothing much to speak of in terms of savings is kind of terrifying.


Also, you're a funny/clever sort of guy, so maybe you could write comedy scripts or something?

My final suggestion is to become a writer of erotic fiction.

Ha, thanks for the vote of confidence, mate. I'd generally assumed the image other users here have of me was something along the lines of 'annoying punster'. The undoubted king of comedy on this forum has to be Owen G with his ongoing Danny Dyer Eastenders saga. Jade Goodie: The Musical (mainly John Eden's work, AFAIR) was superb too.

Erotic fiction? There's certainly money in it, and I've even written sex scenes of a sort into a couple of my stories. There was a (not hugely successful) thread about sex writing not long ago, wasn't there: http://www.dissensus.com/showthread.php?t=13789


Obviously I'm projecting my own career frustrations/ambitions onto you here so take it with a pinch of don'tgiveafuck.

I do love writing but if it was tricky to make a living writing a generation ago, it now seems virtually impossible unless you're incredibly persistent (which I'm not, really) and incredibly lucky (which I haven't been, so far, although never say never, right?). I think the success of 'authors' like E. L. James and 'journalists' like Liz Jones, Richard Littlejohn and so on argues quite forcefully that talent per se doesn't have a great deal to do with success.

Corpsey
12-05-2016, 10:19 AM
Haha, I've just read through this thread and I see Craner already covered the harsh realities of having a 'passion for scriptwriting' earlier. This is the reality of it, I suppose, though all of these writers have to come from somewhere, don't they? And the quality of a lot of TV shows and films makes me think that it can't be THAT hard to at least qualify as a competent writer. But there again it's obviously so much based on who you know.


Don't start by thinking of something cool and interesting start from wanting to make a contribution to society. So no missiles, more CAB.

This is probably the best advice, actually. Only this morning I was berating myself for not having the urge to do some sort of charitable/humanitarian work. I think it's important for the mechanics of a job to satisfy and stimulate you, but if you're not working towards what you see as a worthy goal, even an interesting job will end up frustrating you. (And that goes for academia too. One of the things that puts me off it - aside from my weak work-ethic - is the feeling that, in the arts/humanities disciplines anyway, you're basically just writing stuff for other academics to read.) Also I would tend to assume that charities, e.g., don't attract nearly as many dickheads as other professions. Having to swallow the dumb opinions of colleagues on the homeless, for example, is something that you won't have to deal with at a charity set up to help the homeless... Again, I'm talking about my own situation here more than yours. But luka is onto something here. Perhaps working for the stimulation of one's own interests is ultimately as lacking in fulfilment as working for one's own financial interests?

Corpsey
04-08-2017, 09:46 AM
Hah! I happened across this thread this morning as I lie in bed 'working from home'. I have been let go from my job at a charity - I've got two weeks left. It was a relatively interesting job, well paid (compared to my last job, certainly) and for a good cause, buuuut - I never got into it, I never enjoyed it, I am (despite now having the anxiety of finding another job in about a fortnight) relieved that they got rid of me.

This obviously contradicts what I wrote just above this. Working for a charity has shown me that I'm really not a good enough person to be motivated by a good cause. Ultimately, I still felt bored by the work, miserable to be returning to the same office every day, alienated from the whole thing.

I'm not at an impasse of sorts because I have no desire to do any of the sorts of office job I'm qualified to do. :mad: Does life have to be like this? (I've got a horrible feeling that answer is 'yes, and then some, and it could be worse'.)

craner
04-08-2017, 11:02 AM
Oh shit, I'd forgotten about my plastered contributions to this one! :o

john eden
04-08-2017, 12:30 PM
Hah! I happened across this thread this morning as I lie in bed 'working from home'. I have been let go from my job at a charity - I've got two weeks left. It was a relatively interesting job, well paid (compared to my last job, certainly) and for a good cause, buuuut - I never got into it, I never enjoyed it, I am (despite now having the anxiety of finding another job in about a fortnight) relieved that they got rid of me.

This obviously contradicts what I wrote just above this. Working for a charity has shown me that I'm really not a good enough person to be motivated by a good cause. Ultimately, I still felt bored by the work, miserable to be returning to the same office every day, alienated from the whole thing.

I'm not at an impasse of sorts because I have no desire to do any of the sorts of office job I'm qualified to do. :mad: Does life have to be like this? (I've got a horrible feeling that answer is 'yes, and then some, and it could be worse'.)

I think this idea that work can be fun and liberating and interesting is completely toxic and raises expectations too much. It's almost like if you don't enjoy work there is something wrong with you.

So really the best way to approach it is that whatever you do will involve quite a lot of tedium, but there will be moments of happiness too. You can keep applying for different jobs or you can bed in and stay in the same place and try and make it better. Both of these approaches have their pros and cons.

Ultimately a fulfilling life is a hard ask and has to be a combination of work and what happens outside it (and the non-work stuff that happens at work).

Liking the people you work with is a big deal, probably more important than "the cause" or end product as long as you're not having a great laugh in the mafia or something.

john eden
04-08-2017, 12:37 PM
And yes, of course, the situation could be a lot worse. And for many people it is going to get a lot worse too.

277

We're talking about the top two bits of the pyramid here - which for a lot of people, historically and geographically would have been inconceivable.

There is only so much that can be done about these things as individuals. What we need is collective action that abolishes capitalism and creates a world human community based on fulfilling people's needs.

Until then I'll try and make my life as best as I can and hopefully help people along the way. :)

firefinga
04-08-2017, 12:48 PM
I think this idea that work can be fun and liberating and interesting

An interesting and exact observation. The "work is oh so interesting and FUN" is of course pure propaganda and goes well with the fact (at least in my observations) that today work is being synonymous with office work and the actual "working class" has pretty much disappeared in the (semi)public and media. The blue collar types - who are still there and do a lot to keep the crap-machine of today's economy moving - know that work is crappy a lot of the time.

Corpsey
04-08-2017, 01:30 PM
Yeah, I am aware that my inability to enjoy or even tolerate work is very much to do with my general depression about my life. The problem isn't the tedium of work so much as the tedium and anguish of my life outside of it.

john eden
04-08-2017, 01:54 PM
Yeah, I am aware that my inability to enjoy or even tolerate work is very much to do with my general depression about my life. The problem isn't the tedium of work so much as the tedium and anguish of my life outside of it.

You can still take pride in what you do at work, mind. Even if it's making a really good cup of tea.

john eden
04-08-2017, 02:05 PM
How old are you Corpsey? It gets better.

Leo
04-08-2017, 03:04 PM
Liking the people you work with is a big deal, probably more important than "the cause" or end product as long as you're not having a great laugh in the mafia or something.

i'm self employed, so my "work" isn't one place but with a series of different clients. at the end of the day, i don't "love" what i do but can on occasion feel good about it for the reason john mentions here. for example, i have one client where the CEO is a genuinely good guy who is very passionate about his businesses, so i feel good when i do a good job for him. it's not so much that i get personal satisfaction from helping the business per se, but that i've helped a guy who i like personally. if that makes any sense.

luka
04-08-2017, 03:46 PM
My job's great I have a right laugh only work for about 20 hours a week and basically do fuck all

Leo
04-08-2017, 03:51 PM
My job's great I have a right laugh only work for about 20 hours a week and basically do fuck all

i'd imagine the pop-up retail poetry business can get a bit slow during inclement weather, tho.

Corpsey
04-08-2017, 06:59 PM
How old are you Corpsey? It gets better.

32. It's getting worse.

john eden
05-08-2017, 09:45 AM
I think the 30s are quite tough, to be honest.

I spent a lot of my 30s being a parent and going out and engaging in community politics and dicking about online and in print. In retrospect this was probably much better than spending too much time thinking about my career. In my 40s things have ramped up career wise so I've had less time for all that stuff.

I don't know if my experience is typical though - or translateable, because my 30s were in the noughties.

What I will say though, being all paternalistic/patronising, is that people in their 20s and 30s seem way too hard on themselves. They all seem way more sussed than I was and yet there seems to be this huge generational pull towards beating yourself up - at least amongst people I see on social media.

slackk
06-08-2017, 06:09 PM
Funny thread. Odd that a lot of the kind of aspirations of people of our ilk (I know they're a few years old now) seem to be isolationist, dark room pursuits- I wish I was a writer/computer musician/creative bloke in a box.

I think theres a lot more satisfaction to be had in being out and about, blue collar work, get the sun on your back, drive around & find some good caffs etc etc

If you're that frustrated in your run of things Corpsey why not change paths completely.

The creative pursuits are overrated imo

luka
06-08-2017, 08:16 PM
The big problem with blue collar work is the cumulative damage to the body. I only spent about 6 or so years doing heavy stuff and that was in my teens and early 20s. I wouldn't want to be doing it now pushing 40. Even light work like bar and barista takes its toll. It's the repetitive motions and the long hours on the feet.

luka
06-08-2017, 08:17 PM
Social work gets you outdoors though. Could try that. You'll burn out in a few years but good for the karmic bank balance

luka
06-08-2017, 08:35 PM
Then again sounds to me like you need to drop out. Disregard what mummy and daddy might say and just give up on the idea of a career. Take anything that comes along for booze and drug mone and rent and drift.

slackk
06-08-2017, 09:53 PM
Doesn't necessarily have to be labouring though. Get a trade, become a spark/plumber/plasterer, drive a mini sprinter.

If corpsey- sorry to use you as the litmus for everything here- is trapped in a moment of ennui and these desk jobs are killing him off, change up the pattern is all I'm saying.

Make the most of the summer and get outdoors for a month you will feel better for it

firefinga
07-08-2017, 11:38 AM
The creative pursuits are overrated imo

Exacerbated by the fact that in 2017 it's almost impossible to actually make a living that way.

luka
07-08-2017, 01:21 PM
Doesn't necessarily have to be labouring though. Get a trade, become a spark/plumber/plasterer, drive a mini sprinter.

If corpsey- sorry to use you as the litmus for everything here- is trapped in a moment of ennui and these desk jobs are killing him off, change up the pattern is all I'm saying.

Make the most of the summer and get outdoors for a month you will feel better for it

Definitely agree he should escape office work and not stop running

luka
07-08-2017, 08:26 PM
In this life it's important to decide a)how normal you want to be and b)how normal you're capable of being/how normal you actually are.
Self deceit causes a lot of unhappiness

firefinga
17-08-2017, 11:03 AM
As sad as it is, Job/work is often just an excuse to leave home, to be away from family and such. More and more people seem to get divorced AFTER retirement these days in other words when people are wrecking each other's nerves 24-7. Shows that "Happy Family Life" is often another case of wishful thinking and/or propaganda.

trilliam
17-08-2017, 11:55 AM
The creative pursuits are overrated imo

definitely, in my late teens/earlier twenties ('08-'14) i toyed with the idea of being able to make a living in a creative field, a optimistic but still reasonable and very achievable goal in "that time", but all you've gotta do is look at all of these print-media mediums getting shut down (from thump to espn) to see to see that time is gone.


In this life it's important to decide a)how normal you want to be and b)how normal you're capable of being/how normal you actually are.
Self deceit causes a lot of unhappiness

this is good for the mind but happiness don't pay the bills, regardless of any emotional hangups this £££ is a necessity, anything else is a luxury

so with that in mind i'd say in (grown up) life you must

a) be realistic about how much money you need to live a comfortable life (hint: its in the low/mid twenties)
b) build from there

i do "blue collar work" and have done for a long time , i get enjoyment from work the same way anyone who's used to the ratrace does, relationships, bants and most importantly being able to put a roof over my head, afford simple luxuries and where possible save for better luxuries. that's all i want from Work and i'm quite happy to continue doing it while pursuing interests elsewhere

mon - fri living (depending on hours) can pretty much kill off any aspirations outside making it to the weekend but im lucky enough to have a 50/50 60/40 balance of work-play because of how i've manoeuvred in this dunya

if i didnt do what i currently do i'd be tempted to drive a bus for a year or two

luka
20-08-2017, 08:31 PM
It's difficult to know what's realism and what's defeatism.
Some people give up dreams too early, others hang on far too long.

trilliam
23-08-2017, 11:46 PM
It's difficult to know what's realism and what's defeatism.
Some people give up dreams too early, others hang on far too long.


Defo

My point was that financial limitations (actual or imagined) can stop a person from fulfilling their quote unquote dreams

And if people were to be more realistic about the amount of money they need to be comfortable, live, create etc then they'd be less stressed

Maybe more stressed though. Who knows.