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That full-time contract - Adulting Mythbusters

I know for sure I am not the only one who grew up with the myth of the full-time contract: the symbol of financial stability and being an adult, especially if said job is your dream job, or not too far from it. If you need to catch up on the 'having your shit together' episode, you can find it here. If you have no idea what I'm talking about you might need to start from here instead.


adulting job

Have you ever come across that funny little chart that explains the three main life factors and the awful timing they are given to us? Basically when you are young you have time and energy, but don't have money. When you are old you have time and money, but no energy. As an adult you are supposed to have money and energy, but no time to waste following other dreams that aren't your job. Well well, let me tell you something. This chart is not true anymore, at least not for my generation. Yes, I am generalising quite a bit here.

Let's say in our search for the perfect job, or for our path, we keep falling for six month contracts, temporary jobs, underpaid internships, and we keep changing surroundings. The silver lining of this unstable work situation is that, as soon as the contract is over, we do have time and money, and energy. Fast forward many years, you meet that friend who had his life planned and everything worked out accordingly. Let's play it out: A is him, mr. shittogether, B is me us.

A- Hey B! It's been ages! Haven't seen you since school ended. That summer I was lucky to get hired for that new big corp. Of course it was an underpaid internship! It took a little bit to get used to the atmosphere and the shirt ironing. At least when they extended my contract to full time it became an easy routine. Yes, I am still there, do you remember Beth from school? We got married and with babies on their way I really can't ask for more.

B- That summer after graduation I temporarily moved to another city for an internship, one suitcase and permanently empty fridge sort of situation. The boss was horrible but coworkers were awesome, I met this couple and we went backpacking around Europe for a month after our contract ended. Then I worked a year for a start up company in California, ended up traveling to Tuscany. No, I still don't have a car, I won't need one for a while because I am moving to Australia.

 Thank you A for your testimony, thank you B, you can both go back to your seats now.

These are two opposite scenarios. One sounds perfect if 'stability' is your second name, and you know what you want, and how to get there. The other sounds cool if you are not sure about your life career, and if you actually want to travel. What A and B didn't expose is the struggle, the sacrifice, the doubts, but all these are intrinsic in the whole adulting process. 

For example, it could be hard to plan ahead events such as buying a house, starting a family, finally settle in one place, if that's the life path you chose. For this episode's sake I wanted to focus only on the full time job myth. As you could gather from A meeting B, neither one is a preferable life than the other, neither is 'the right way to do it', neither is wrong. They're just different paths

And the moral is: enjoy life and all the things you have at the moment because you can't have everything at once.


Image: thanks to Martina

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