As a thirty-something millennial the average job will not sustain our interest for a long period of time. I’m sure you’ve started a new job, been introduced around, and heard from the “seasoned employees” that have ten, fifteen years under their belt.
I recently interviewed for that “dream job”; the holy grail of jobs that would be the perfect lifetime career. During the interview, the hiring manager told me that she got her start at the company—thirty-one years ago! And she had been climbing the corporate ladder ever since. My excitement for the position immediately evaporated. I no longer was excited to be part of a team, to have a work-schedule regimen, and the best part, benefits. With those two words, “thirty-one years,” my future flashed before me, instantly summed up by a 40-50 hour workweek controlling it.
As an older millennial, having a career is the smart move. After all, it offers stability, structure, BENEFITS, and affords you the luxury of being able to start a family or take care of the one you may already have, pay those monthly bills we all have to face at some time, and do thirty-something grown-up shit; take trips, staycations, drink expensive wine, splurge on those new shoes for a date that will probably go left and whatever other guilty pleasure you’re into.
But that doesn’t mean our drive is different from that of a twenty-five-year-old. We, too, yearn to be challenged, like to be involved in the process, have been spoiled by instant gratification and most of all, we get bored in the blink of an eye.
Hence the reason we usually have side hustles and full-fledged businesses that we run from our smartphones and laptops on the weekends and evenings. I currently work a (temp) full-time job and a part-time freelance position, I am founder of a blog, manage three social media pages, I am working on my next novel, and the projects list continues to grow by the week.
I recently found myself back in a full-time position (though temporary) to finance my lifestyle and passion projects. Let’s face it: running a business (whether online-based or brick and mortar) is not easy, and most of all requires constant cash flow. But committing to a forty-hour workweek can be challenging when you’ve been your own boss for so long. Being able to show up, take orders, and pretend you want to be there can be tough when your dreams are bigger than the Empire State Building.
Here are some ways to cope with the transition from #GirlBoss to employee:
You’re in it to Win it—stay positive
Remember why you started this new position—I’m sure it is financial. Never forget that. You are going back to being an employee to finance your dreams. While this wasn’t the plan at first, you’ve had to make a detour. Don’t feel bad, Shark Tank’s Barbara Corcoran, who has said “Failure is what I’m best at,” started off as a diner waitress before borrowing $1,000 from a boyfriend to build a billion-dollar real estate empire. Embrace your new beginnings and remember this is a long con, you’re in it for the long haul. Don’t take your eyes off the prize.
Pack lunch and snacks
Spend less time waiting in line for food on your breaks by packing your snacks and lunch. Not only does it save time but money as well. Be productive on your breaks, check email, return phone calls, do some writing, whatever you can that will increase your business growth. The same for your morning and afternoon commute. Spend your time wisely. If you must order lunch, check out UberEats – you can order your food through your smartphone while checking your emails.
Turn complaints into opportunity
If you ask people the number one reason why someone would want to start a business, what do you think they would say? So I can be the boss and make my own schedule.
No one wants to wake up early, clock in, and work their asses off for little pay and no appreciation. But no matter what your job is, find something that can be useful in building your business. Apply your new job skills to your business. Better customer service, having a pleasant attitude despite not wanting to be there, management skills, financial planning, and organization—there is always something you can take from your experience as an employee. Look at your company’s business model and how they grew to become successful. Take notes!