Passion or Pay Packets?

Boyfriend insurance, meditations (or sleepy time as some call it) and career talk all contributed to an eventful week. On Tuesday I did a debate ”That this house would make it an offence to steal someone’s boyfriend”. I proposed the motion on the grounds that all boyfriends must match the criteria on a newly set up website, if they match the criteria of the value system then they may be insured by their girlfriends, on www.He’sWorthIt/IsHe?.ie  It was a bit of a laugh as it was intended to be, but the more I think of it, I’ve come up with a real money making brainwave here! Insuring your boyfriend so that he doesn’t cheat on you and a fine as the penalty is actually something people would consider investing in apparently. As one teacher said ”It’s just as bad as murder”. Boyfriend insurance would act as a deterrence from cheating and the rate of broken hearts would definitely plummet. Maybe that could be my new career? A boyfriend insurance saleswoman? A millionairess boyfriend insurance saleswoman…It’s an option.

Do any of us really know what fun is anymore? Apparently not as admittedly I along with our year got excited when going to a school retreat. Some of you may not be familiar with retreats but our school has a particular religious ethos and they believe that once a year we should ”Take time out and reflect”. Basically we go to some local hall or centre where three people, who we have absolutely no idea what they do for a living, ‘entertain’ us in a ‘fun’ and also a religious spiritual way. They tell us the same stories every year and show us a stick that resembles Jesus. Well anything beats school! One of them said she used to be a PR agent for the Seoige sisters and Criag Doyle. Now that’s a job I’d like. Mmmm Craig Doyle, why you’d leave that job to talk about sticks that look like Jesus and what colours mean about you, I don’t know.

The following day we had interview skills from a professional..interviewer I suppose? Followed by a series of college talks from college reps on choosing your career. We learned not to listen to your parents because they’re idiots, don’t dress like you’re on the pull for an interview and basically Ireland is shit. But only for the next ten years or so, no need to panic. I already knew not to dress like Cat Slater from Eastenders for an interview and I got the message Ireland is pretty much f***** for the future, but trying to block out the oul tuismitheoiri is a hard task. As much as I try they still creep in there, somewhere in my subconscious I hear their voices.

The people on the careers day told us that lots of their students choose a course because their parents told them it would be a good idea or their mam or dad are in the same profession, there’s a tradition of it in the family. That’s not really the case with my parents, they aren’t teachers but they are Irish. That means they think teaching is the only job out there, no other jobs exists. When my sister did advertising and marketing they said ” Advertising? Marketing? There’s no jobs in that, who works in that? ” . Yes mam and dad spot on, who on earth works in advertising it’s not like it’s a multi-billion euro worldwide industry or anything? This is such a typical Irish mentality I know an engineer and when I asked him why he decided to go into engineering he said ”My mam told me Mary down the road, her son did it. And he’s driving a new Volkswagen golf so.. must be good money I thought”.  Yes that’s a brilliant reason to choose your career, as long as you get that car, no regrets!

The career talks got me thinking about my choices yet again. I was always dead set on writing, I always wanted to be a writer and a journalist. I used to write stories in my spare time when I was a little weird child, I also attempted to write a book. I printed off 17 chapters and made it into a little book. It was called ”The Big Bang” involving 6 teenagers, three girls and three boys, boyfriends and girlfriends of course. They were in a car crash together and the events of that night impacted on the rest of their lives!! It wasn’t bad for an eleven year old. But job prospects for journalists in Ireland put me right off when I was old enough to care about job security.

Everyone says there are little or no openings for journalism and if i was to pursue it, I’d want the big time. The Irish times, The Independent, I wouldn’t want a local paper forever. In this country I’d be waiting until I’m thirty to get a proper journalism job (so I’m told). However lately I can’t ignore my passion for writing and I’m considering upgrading it to my top 3 choices on the dreaded CAO. I look at Laura Whitmore who did journalism in DCU and she made it to MTV. Is that a sign of hope or a one in a million chance of a lucky break for a talented Irish girl? Should I even consider job prospects or do what I love? I’ve been really interested in psychology the past few years and I’ve been told the same about that. No jobs, no demand. That all changed when we got a talk from a psychologist yesterday and he said there are plenty of jobs(not biased I’m sure), he also said he was on 10 grand a month at one point. *Jaw hit the floor* Definitely confirmed my interest! I told my parents about this and needless to say Mary down the road and her son’s new Volkswagen faded in comparison.

I’m in a dilemma of choosing a ‘Safe’ career or going with your passion. Underlying dilemmas include the certainty of my passions and are any careers actually ‘Safe’ anymore? Should we consider money and job prospects or should we just go with our passions? Should we believe the advice ”Do whatever you love, if you do what you love you’ll be good at it, if you’re good at it, you WILL get a job”. I quite like the idea of skipping into work everyday loving what I do. I’d love to not dread going into work on a Monday morning or dread going back after Christmas. I just want a job I love with a ridiculously high salary and a flexible schedule, and maybe one of those spinney office chairs and expensive paper weights. Is that really too much to ask for? Am I reaching for the stars here?

At higher options someone said ”Yeah, 250,000 people are unemployed and looking for jobs. Just remember you’re just one person, looking for one job”. Between our careers day in the school and Higher options, I’ve got so much information I don’t know what to do. Last year I thought I had it all figured out. I’ve got so many prospectuses my room looks like a guidance counselors office. When you do what you love they say you’ll never work a day in your life. Easier said than done, think I’ll have to get a fortune teller on the case. I better get back to making it look like I’m doing something productive to make myself feel better and worrying about the rest of my life and studying but actually, not. I’m definitely delving way too deep into this career talk, when you find yourself saying ”A flexible schedule would suit because let’s face it, when I take maternity leave ..” You know it’s bad. I might be planning a bit too far ahead.

Stay strong leaving certs,


2 thoughts on “Passion or Pay Packets?”

  1. Passions. I honestly can’t stand that mentality of pursuing a ‘safe’ job for safety’s sake alone, or because you were told to. In my school our career guidance teacher was very much of that mindset. I guess its understandable in a way ‘cos there’s a recession and all..’ but in my opinion one should follow their dreams/interests. Blaze their own trail.

    Id rather wake up every morning on the dole trying to do something I love then stumbling into my 9-5 money machine and not enjoying it. Whatever you do, do what you want anyway. Take it from me its so hard to choose the right course, but its really not the end of the world. You can give it a go anyway and change course if it doesn’t suit you. I always thought ‘now this is it, this is my course for the next four years I cant waste any more time of my Oh so short life choosing the right one’ but so many of my classmates are much older than me starting out college (nineteen etc.)
    Im in first year myself at the moment and trying to live by my above philosophy/rant xD. Enjoy 6th year anyway and best of luck with the ‘aul lc and cao!

  2. I agree with you passion is definitely more important than going for a ‘Safe’ option. At the same time though I’d like to do something I like and know there’s a job at the end of it. If you’re good at what you do though, you will get a job. (Or so I’m told & choosing to believe anyway)

    By the sounds of things there will be no job openings here for a long time, so I might no end up in Ireland anyway.

    Well thanks and good luck with college 🙂

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