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Old 10-05-2008, 04:57 PM   #1
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Quarter life Crises--Cant figure out what job to do, 26 yrs old living with parents!

Hello I am a 26 yr old male. I have been unfortunate in the career department in life. I got a degree from college in Criminal Justice. My GPA was a 2.8. Which is my fault. However the degree I went for was not something I really wanted to do. I went into college blind and only took the advice to do the degree because my dad was a cop and he wanted my to follow in his footsteps. I receantly did an interview for a parole officer position which starts at 39,000 a yr. Not bad money, but not so great either considering my age and how much invested in college. There is openins for the police department in the city I went to college to that start at 74,000 a yr. It is in jan however and I am not sure if I would make the cut. I lost a job this last spring because a weapon came up missing in a shiptment(moving company). I wrote down the serial number on the weapon wrong so I got fired from my position. Although I was not enjoying the job, I did not want it to go down that way. It is not good for getting other jobs. So now I am living at home because I could not afford rent anymore. I am working for my dad a little for having them feed me and such. But I can not stand the town I am in. It is a highschool town and retirement place and really nothing in between. I have no friends here, no prospects for any kind of relationship(girlfriend) and I am going crazy not having a job and living with parents. I have thought about joining the military. I really want to get out of this place. The only problem is that the military does not pay so well and it takes a long time to get promotions..like 2 yrs after the intial ranks. I would starto ut makeing maybe 37,000 when takeing into consideration the food and housing benefits. It would be nice because I would be on my own and in a career that has good training and can move foward. I just dont know what to do. I am super depressed. I have applied for 9 state jobs and a bunch of other city jobs in the town where I went to college. Main problem is most of them require experience and the college degree does not really hold much weight. So I am in 38,000 depbt from school. living with parents, no friends, no girlfriend...it is horrible. I am lucky to have people to help me along the way. But I also see all my friends and they got everything together...good job, social circle, girlfriends etc. Lastely my hair is starting to go! Myhairline is receading...I take pills for it and hopefully it will stop but mancould anymore go wrong? Ugg what to do? Should I just bite the bullet and go military? I have througt about either airforce or navy. I would have a fairly normal life in the airforce, but the navy would be cool for traveling. I figure I wont be able to go to europe, japan, australia, thailand etc on my own...but I would have to be on a ship for a long time. I am a private pilot as well so it would be nice to be around planes again. I am thinking maybe doing aircraft maitenance if i go in. Well any thoughts on this would be great thanks.

Of all the things though I have been able to extinguish my drinking problem since living back with my parents...so maybe this is all a blessing in disguise...I have only drank twice in the past 2 months. When I was living in the city it was about 4 times a week. I actually have more money now between not paying rent and cutting bad habits. Maybe this will be the change for the better. I am talking the military ASVAB on oct 20th.

Last edited by Mr.G; 10-05-2008 at 05:28 PM.

 
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Old 10-06-2008, 02:45 AM   #2
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Re: Quarter life Crises--Cant figure out what job to do, 26 yrs old living with paren

It's not at all unusual to be unsure of what you really want to do at your age. I know a lot of people in their 30's and 40's that are still making these decisions. Your next job might not be your ideal career job, but it might lead you someplace unexpected and good. Finding a good job requires a lot of effort, persistence and networking. It's partly a numbers game.

Personally, I would definitely say NO to the military idea. It's low pay, high risk, depressing, and the training you get during war time is not likely to help you much in a career afterwards. Some people thrive, but many people come home broken. You really need to focus on making money to get rid of your debt and give yourself a greater sense of independence.

The best way to know if you'll like a job is to actually do it. Sometimes you just need to jump in (I'm assuming an internship isn't an option). The second best way is to talk to people who are in the job, and observe them in the job if possible. I would try to find a parole officer who would let you shadow him/her for a day to get a sense of what it would be like to work in that environment. Ask a lot of questions.

In my state, every county has at least one agency devoted to helping people find jobs. The one in my area has career counseling classes every week, some aptitude testing, and lots of information about different careers and job openings.

There are thousands of jobs out there in careers that most of us have never heard of. I think you might benefit from learning about some completely different kinds of careers other than law enforcement and government work. (Sorry I have a bias about government jobs because most of the people I know in those jobs are miserable.)

And if you can't find the ideal career job right away, take any job that will teach you a new skill that you might need in the future. I think everyone should spend a little time in sales, because those skills are useful in any career. (Though I'd caution against any sales job that required you to buy anything yourself, or that paid a pure commission.)

Good luck!

 
Old 10-06-2008, 10:37 AM   #3
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Re: Quarter life Crises--Cant figure out what job to do, 26 yrs old living with paren

Hello,
If you do join the military, go for air force because you're least likely to have to fight in a war and should be paid more, and talk to a few recruiters to make sure you're getting the best deal, because with a Bachelor's degree, they should START you as an officer, and your pay should be better. Make sure you get all of your promises in WRITING, too. I've heard of people being promised things (GI bill, etc.) and then being denied later.
Find out whether they can pay off some of your loans.

I agree the military shouldn't be your first choice, though. Go for police officer, if you can, and if it's something you WANT. It almost has to be a calling, though.

If you decide against those options, or they don't work out (though the air force should be glad to have you), I'd consider something like the Peace Corps, something that will get you out of your small town. Or if what you really want is the opportunities of a big city, sometimes you just have to pack up your bags and go...

 
Old 10-06-2008, 11:43 AM   #4
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Re: Quarter life Crises--Cant figure out what job to do, 26 yrs old living with paren

Hello and thanks for the replies. I do have an option here for the small town I am in to work as a corrections officer at 19.00 an hour. The good thing about this job is that it is one week on and one week off. The shifts are kind of lame at 7-12..but it is good for money..about 1,900$ for each week working with the overtime. Easy work. Which is about 3,800 $ a month and 45,000 a yr. I could actually live in the city I went to college to and work in the small town...only about 4 hours apart. I can stay with my parents while working in the town and get a condo in the city and look for other jobs while i am off. I actually coupld probably work another job in the city for a week if I wanted to, it pays 12.00 an hour. That would be a double wammie right there. That would be another grand a month. Which would be about 4,800 a month and 57,000 for a year. I really want to move out of this state all together and just wish I didnt have this darn loan on my hands. Ok back to the military. As far as branches go yes Airforce is handsdown the best to go into for treatment and quality of life. But it is far inferior for advancements and pay to the army. But in the army you are essentialy a grunt and you are going to war and possibly die. They offered me a warrant officer position for flying helicopters...but it is a 7.5 yr commit and they send you into warzones all the time. Sadly I do not quite qualify for an officer position in the airforce, I do meet the min requirements but I am not competitive, because it is way overmanned. The navy offers more as bonuses but then again I would have to be stuck on a ship for ever. I dont know I might take this job here and get a place back in the city so I can explore. It would be a lot better than what I have been doing for the last couple of yrs. Maybe I will do this for a year or so to get on my feet and then explore other stuff.

Last edited by Mr.G; 10-06-2008 at 11:52 AM.

 
Old 10-06-2008, 12:05 PM   #5
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Mr.G HB User
Re: Quarter life Crises--Cant figure out what job to do, 26 yrs old living with paren

Actually another I could do is joing the Air Guard and get that 20,000 bonus and all the benefits. Work one weekend a month and 2 weeks in the summer.

Well Im scheming now, the only thing is I really want to move out of this state. I will probably have to work a couple more yrs for that. Ok well any more advice would be grand...I think I will figure this out in time.

PLaus--You right about the government jobs and the thing is it wasnt somethign I really wanted to do. I just did it because my dad wanted me to, and I didnt know any better. After going to school for criminal justice, I learned about basically how crappy the life is. I have thought about applying for a firefighter position but that is a high stress job too. I love airplanes and flying so it would be nice to be around something like that, that is why I considered the airforce and aircraft matienance.

Last edited by Mr.G; 10-06-2008 at 12:10 PM.

 
Old 10-06-2008, 11:32 PM   #6
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Re: Quarter life Crises--Cant figure out what job to do, 26 yrs old living with paren

That sounds good except for splitting your life in two places 4 hours apart. That could get old fast. But, as long as you can maintain a set of friends in the city, it might work. Dating becomes challenging when you're constantly leaving.

 
Old 10-07-2008, 12:03 AM   #7
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Re: Quarter life Crises--Cant figure out what job to do, 26 yrs old living with paren

yeah I know about 80 people in the city. So I always have friends there. Dateing diff would be hard, and I know my parents would get on my nerves. I know the are trying to help but my dad especially keeps insisting that I stay home and it werids me out a little bit...its like should you be wanting me to get out on my own? I dunno this military thing keeps rolling over and over in my head. With the airforce I would have a pretty normal life..the pay would not be so great but at least I would be moving foward and be getting training. Plus I would get to move...I reallly have an itch just to get up and start a completely new life. I am hopeing one of these other jobs I applied for goes through. I am basically gonan wait about a month and if nothing happens Im gonna go to military or take the job here.

Last edited by Mr.G; 10-07-2008 at 12:10 AM.

 
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