I’ve spent way too much time trying to describe what I do to people who don’t really care either way. That’s not supposed to be self-deprecating or a slight to me at all. Truly, it doesn’t matter what the day-to-day tasks of a “PR Strategist” are in the grand scheme of their lives; yet, I always go into detail talking about it. I lacked confidence in what I was doing for so long that I projected that onto those around me. In other words, I just assume that they think my job isn’t real. Stupid, I know. If there’s one thing I’ve learned through my early 20s & a global pandemic, it’s that paying the bills (in any way, shape, or form) & normalizing the jobs we love is pretty cool.
Call It A “Side Hustle”
I’ve worked at a restaurant for five years now. It’s been a huge source of my income throughout college and even after I graduated. Society made me feel like working as a server, bartender, or shift manager in the food service industry was almost embarrassing because of my education level. Expectations of our college graduates had me looking for jobs that didn’t sound remotely interesting because I couldn’t work in a restaurant
First off, I want to say that you can do whatever makes you happy for your whole life. You can serve, teach, write, coach, strip, or mine bitcoin if that’s what makes you happy and pays the bills. Who has the right to tell you otherwise? Second, working that restaurant job that I thought I had to move on from so quickly allowed me to fund my own business that was making absolutely NO money at first.
Knowing Your Worth
There’s a difference between doing what brings you joy and knowing your worth. Also, it’s important to understand that no matter what your education level, class, or financial standing, your time is worth money. Having a food service job has allowed me to price myself fairly in all aspects of my business. I have education and experience in this career, there is no reason that I should be making a larger hourly wage as a server. If that’s the case, find clients, brands, and businesses who will pay you FAIRLY!
End Goal: Paying the Bills
I’ve always had a weird relationship with money. Even when I have a good amount of it saved, I want to know I have more constantly coming in. I want to be finding ways to increase my income streams. Watching two parents hustle for as long as I have, it’s part of my nature to just want to work really really hard for as long as humanly possible!
The end goal, however, is always to pay the bills. Like millions of others in the United States, I have thousands of dollars in student loan debt that makes for a hefty bill each month. If I can have a business AND a restaurant job that alleviates some of the stress of that bill, why wouldn’t I? Paying your rent, filling your fridge, and treating yourself is nothing to turn your nose up to. Those who judge you for the way that you pay your bills probably aren’t the ones we want to be taking financial advice from. Am I right?
Normalizing the Jobs We Love
If you’re paying your bills, you’re doing pretty well. The fact that we turn up our nose at certain jobs or industries even though they’re what bring us joy seems silly. Unless those pushing you to be a lawyer are going to be paying your mortgage, they don’t really have a say in law school!
If you need more proof, Giorgio Armani worked as a photographer’s assistant while on leave from the Italian military because he was obsessed with the art, fashion, and creativity aspect of life. He made $1.67 an hour but did what he loved and eventually paid WAY more than the bills (he’s worth $6.6 million dollars). Normalizing jobs we love isn’t a way of accepting average but realizing that we’re usually money magnets when we’re happy.
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