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How do you identify with your job?

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    I love my job.

    Sometimes it makes unreasonable time demands, and that can affect my family.

    Sometimes I am stressed because of it.

    Most of the time it *xxxx*s my body clock.

    Sometimes it makes me feel as if I spend a bit to much time on the “dark side”

    But I love it.

    It has the level of “intensity” I need to feel “right”, It continually challenges me to be at the top of my game and learn new things and has taken me to levels of personal development I never thought I would achieve.

    But the best thing?

    I get to change lives in a positive way. That makes it all worth it :tup:


    I currently work in an engineering consultancy. the work is a means to an end in that if I did not have debt, I would work the minimum time required to pay my basic needs. Probably two to three days a week. As far as enjoying the job goes, I enjoy the aspect of solving problems, but find it incredibly stressful trying to work within budgets and timelines and haveing to account for all my time in the office:p

    For this reason I predict that in the future, I will move towards a public service job. Somewhere that I can get the same mental stimulation, but do not have to account for every hour of every day. I have negotiated a nine day fortnight and just that extra day off a fortnight makes a massive difference:tup: I look at some of the older guys in the job and am not inspired at all and dont want to be that guy in 30 years; still working the same, or longer hours, still trying to romance the same clients, still selling their morals and still not realising what’s really important.

    Incidently I have also taken a stance against working for mining companies. This has caused a few waves a work and I think the biggest impact it has had is not in the act of not working for mining, but in showing other employees that one can challenge expectation!:)


    Since moving out of a city I have revived my IT “consultancy” and am loving. I do a range of things – many of which I learn on the fly and am meeting a lot of really nice people.

    I work when I am called and it is working out to about part time although I billed about 40 hours the other week.

    The other thing that I have been doing is equating a project/job/set amount of work to progress on the property. i.e. “that workstation and network install paid for the earthmoving for the shed site”

    I had two years of twelve hour or more days and up to seven days a week and that almost destroyed me.

    The healing is still going on for me, but I smile everyday now! Getting out of debt it the key, but don’t kill yourself doing it.


    I am fortunate in that I love what I do and yes I do identify who I am with that.

    I used to work as a bookkeeper in a large corporate firm working long hours rarely even taking a lunch break and allowing myself (due to my lack of self worth) to be very under paid.

    Then I had my mid life crisis. 😉

    I now have less money as I work on building my own business as a healer/massage therapist.

    I now work four days and three nights a week on my business but I don’t work all day every day and I get to choose how many hours a week I will work.

    Also for two days a week I put those years of bookkeeping to good use working for a meditation centre. Doesn’t leave much time for a social life but I have never been happier. 😀

    It’s a struggle at the moment but the business is growing and I fully expect to be in a better financial position soon. Any money I do make I tend to spend on doing more course to get more skills (and for my own personal growth too)

    I must admit I don’t always tell people I’m a massage therapist when they ask what I do but this is mostly because people then expect me to immediatley relieve their neck tension. Which is not what I want to do on the limited times a get a chance to go out and socialise. (My hands are precious and my job is physical.) Do you think I’m mean? I do willingly give people I know a shoulder rub if they need one but over the years have stopped feeling guilty about not doing the same for virtual strangers.

    Eira Clapton

    I have a wonderful job with a lot of variety and a sense of making changes which make the world a better place. but I do dream of going back to working part-time. My DH and I job shared when our kids were little, and it was an ideal lifestyle. We had opportunities for social interaction, creativity and professionalism at work, then time to be with family and indulge in our passions.

    I have noticed that I am less likely to be competitive or wanting to be at the centre of everything as I get older, and I am actively thinking about a ‘third career” ( or is it a fourth -I have lost count!) which will take me through the next 10-20 years.

    I think that I still want something that contributes to society as a whole because that is where my real identity is.


    I loved my job and thought of it as an extension of who I am…but I recently quit due to “Kitchen politics” and a “boss” that was an untrusting beep. The stress was making me sick. So now i’m concentrating on becoming something more what I wanted…. A teacher Aide….may as well be apart of the system…


    Well, I used to be a chemist and now work as an OHS&E manager. I am glad that you have been able to move back in smoothly after your time off Andy! One un-looked-for side effect of my time off is that i have found adjustment to work again somewhat difficult. It is a good job and pays very well and I realise that I have no grounds for complaint…………so why aren’t I happy?

    I think that maybe I have changed in ways that I have not expected and I think that the older I get the less well I put up with the stress. Well they say you can have up to 3 careers in your life and it’s time to do something a bit more ecofriendly…..but I don’t know what it will look like just yet.



    Nev, perhaps the difference between our returns to work is that I’m kinda resigned to my job because I’m at a stage of life where I (a) need the money and (b) have done all this blooming study in the field.

    I think that if I was a little older and wiser I would probably be struggling too. I mean, we’re just about to borrow a stack more money to build a new home – I better get used to my job because it pays well which will support our new lifestyle.

    More than anything, the time off helped me accept that the job I have is better than many I’ve had and better than many others out there.

    Hope that came out the way I meant it to.


    Fair points mate! fair points!:tup:



    Wow the different jobs that you all do. I’ve worked in the rag trade but most have gone OS now and in Teaching, I gave it away in the early 90s became fed up with all the travelling and the BS in some schools. At the moment I work for a large supermarket chain only on weekends so I can look after babs during the week. Its hard being a mum again even though you never forget but I was younger then. I do have a small business but its hard when someone wants to help you.


    Its so interesting reading all of your answers to this one!

    Well, i’m way off track with my career!

    I originally studied Natural Resource Management at Uni… but in a ploy to ‘save some fast cash’ with the intent of travelling overseas after i completed the course, i ended up in an office job whereby i met my husband and never got on the plane! Five years on and I’m now working as an Office Manager in the same company while studying Business and Marketing and was ‘reasonably’ happy until about 8 months ago when i started to hate it and thought “why the hell am i still working in this job??”

    Anyway, i’m still thinking about it (very slowly obviously ) and unsure now whether to pursue other job options or have a baby and be a stay at home mum for a while!!!


    leis, your tale is very familiar – I studied Natural Resource Management too, spend two years working in the industry before getting sick of the politics (I was too young to handle it I fear) and took a job in an office, discovered that I could manage people really well and started on a new pathway. I’m into my seventh year with my current company and do not think I will hate it as long as I have people to manage, coach and mentor.

    You have my best wishes for your decision 🙂


    I’m a stay at home mum but with the youngest going to school in 18 months and having had 11 years ‘off’ I am starting to think about working again. I was an office clerk at Ansett so going back to my old job is not going to happen, and I really don’t want to work in an office environment again. The only thing I have done apart from mothering, gardening and housework in 11 years is a little volunteer work in a hospital so I really have no marketable skills.

    The thing, is what am I going to do ? The pay isn’t all important, job satisfaction is far more important. Something where I can use my brain, meet interesting people and not compromise my values – if that job exists, there will be a queue a mile long for it! Anyone got any ideas ?


    I can relate well with you Nev. I do think as you get a bit older your priorities change and I think you change with that as well. DH and I certainly did. I don’t think either of us could go back into stressful jobs now. We are at a different point now in our lives with children just about grown up (eldest son moved into town last week) and youngest in year 11 and very sure of his career path. We have both had successful careers in the past and DH only works 3 days per week now (away from the property that is) in a much lower stress chef job and I am now at home full time developing the property into being as self-sufficient as we can. We don’t have the financial security we had before but it dosn’t mean much to either of us now either – different priorities like enjoying each others company (yep still madly in love after 20 years) and doing what we always wanted to do and knew if we left it any longer we would not have the energy to do it the way we wanted. I do relate to the younger people posting as well and remember how different I was back then – gosh I’m not that old – but you know what I mean, different point in life.


    Herbman wrote:

    Do you identify your job as mere survival? As an extension of yourself? Is it something you love? Something you loath? Or a means to an end?

    Wow Herby did you intentionally make everyone’s brains work too hard or was it an accident 😉

    I consider myself really lucky that I knew what I wanted to do when I was still at school. Unfortunately I didn’t have to work very hard to get into Uni or complete my degree otherwise I may have found something that would help me pay off the mortgage a bit faster 😆

    I’m immensely satisfied by my job, even with the little diversion I’ve got this year. I was lucky enough to be offered a lecturing position, so rather than teaching kids maths I’m teaching adults how to teach kids maths. I’ve learned a good deal about myself and adult education but most of all my passion for teaching and love of adolescents has been reignited (I didn’t realise it was slowly being socialised out of me with the political flexing that is so rife in the Education sector). Although I miss kids terribly (I have shed tears, yes tears) I remind myself that if I do a good job this year that’s 15 more maths teachers out there developing excellent lessons and managing their classrooms with a high degree of effectiveness.

    If we were to win lotto I’d still work, even if only part-time. I cannot put in words how much I get out of teaching, I can only think of a handful of days (in over 6 years) where I didn’t want to go to work, and that was more from exhaustion than lack of interest.

    I think the only thing I would change about my chosen career is the Florence Nightingale attitude of many teachers – putting immediate concerns in front of long term sustainability in the education system. For example, I’d like to see teachers stand firm on the issue of workload (that is, every bit of administrivia the Department tells us is important takes away from planning rich and authentic lessons). Perhaps I will get my wish when the rate of new teachers dropping out within the first 5 years ends up at 100%… half way there…

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