How much do you hate your job?

Kirjoittaja on New Yorkissa varttunut ja Helsingissä naisistunut copywriter.

Dear Mom,

Sorry it’s been a while since my last letter. But, as you know, we spent Christmas in New York.

It’s nice to be back in Helsinki. Except for the fact that, aaaarrrrgggghhh, one of my favorite coffee places closed down while we were away! It was one of those great places where a bunch of regular customers gathered every morning to drink coffee and talk, i.e. “make the world better,” as the saying goes in Finland.

Anyway, the coffee place didn’t close for lack of customers. People drink buttloads of coffee here, so there were plenty of customers. It closed because the woman who owned it got sick of making hot coffee and decided to become a personal trainer and make hot bodies instead. And she told me that before she was a barista she was a banker. That’s three separate careers and she’s only in her 40s.

A friend of mine who owns her own company says that job-hopping is a huge turn-off to potential employers. People who spend a year or two in a job and move on come off as unreliable. It makes sense. I mean, you wouldn’t want to date someone who has been engaged 10 times, would you? Me either.

But there’s a but.

Because changing jobs is actually good for your bank balance. You might think that keeping a “secure” job and staying “loyal” to one employer is the best way to succeed and make money. But it turns out that sticking with the same job will likely lose you money over the course of your career. So if you play your cards right, it literally pays to play the field when it comes to work.

But there’s more.

How many times have you heard people complain about a working at a job that they hate? Lots. Me too. And most of us have probably worked jobs we’ve hated, too. You know, the kind of job where your first thought when you get out of work on Friday is ”Oh my God… soon it’s going to be Monday again.”

Personally, with a few exceptions, I’ve always loved my work. My favorite day is Monday because it’s the beginning of the week, not the end. And I think one of the world’s greatest (albeit mainly western) luxuries is to be able to change jobs if you have one you hate. It’s amazing how many people out there really believe that work isn’t supposed to be enjoyable. So they settle for making a living and forget about making the most of their lives.

What a waste.

I’ll miss my coffee place. But thanks to the ex-money-making/coffee-making new personal trainer for reminding us that it’s better to follow your heart and find what you love to do than it is to stay on a career path that will lead you someplace you don’t really want to be. Now THAT’S what I call a good workout!

Happy New Year, Lissu