This afternoon, I decided to chill with Dr. Phil. The episode today was about people who need to get a job and move out.
In one case, the young couple were living with her parents after he’d been fired from his job as a prison guard–for smuggling drugs to inmates. Now he’s not working at all because with his record he can’t get a “good” job and he thinks that working at a minimum wage job is beneath him.
To begin with, one has to wonder if anything is really beneath him since it’s kind of his own fault that he got in this strait.
I understand someone holding out for a job they’re better qualified for when they have a financial cushion. When my dad lost his job about 10 years ago, he got a good severance package (1 year’s pay) and thus had time to look for another job. Fortunately, he worked hard on the job search and did find another position.
On the other hand, if you ran out of savings and couldn’t find a job in your field–would you consider some kind of work beneath you? (besides anything immoral, anyway–scamming and certain sex-related jobs and the like or being a hired killer…yeah, there’s a list but it doesn’t include McDonald’s.)
Dr. Phil tried to convince this guy that making $7 or $8 an hour is better than making $0 an hour.
Thoughts about work:
- Any job gives you a chance to practice personal development. You may have heard the story of the Three Stonecutters. You may not be able to be the one who says that he’s building a cathedral, but maybe you can say “I am a stone cutter and I am cutting stones to earn money to support my family.” It’s a start.
- Any job that pays money, well, pays money. Simplistic, but something is better than nothing.
- Having a job is psychologically comforting–not working can take a heavy toll on one’s psyche.
- Superiority or inferiority has much more to do with how you treat people than what you do. There have been some leaders of entire nations who were also, well, Hitler or Stalin or Amin. And I’ve worked under really great people as cleaning staff.
It may be impossible to live and support people on minimum wage. But you have to start somewhere. I don’t think it’s quite fair to say that a certain job is beneath you.
photo by pineapplexvi