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Old 05-18-2019, 06:42 PM
Location: Tucson Arizona
3,804 posts, read 1,613,544 times
Reputation: 9948


My brother describes one of his sons as "Playing not to fail." I want to smack him every time he says it.

The son has a good job at a respectable company, and has had a variety of interesting responsibilities in the decade he's worked there. He seems pretty happy there.

But that's not enough for my brother, he feels his 40-year-old son should want something more.

Ironically, my brother was a boy scout leader for 30 years. I shudder to think all those kids were subjected to his disrespect for being content with your life.
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Old 05-18-2019, 08:56 PM
3,106 posts, read 1,426,037 times
Reputation: 2353
Originally Posted by Sassybluesy View Post

I have a BIL that hasn't held a job in...about 10 years. His wife works, and they get income from a little house they rent out in the city...but it's barely enough for them to get by. They don't ask other people for money, but he's the kind of guy who LOVES to tell other people what they should do, and he's the kind of guy that measures out the toilet paper so someone doesn't use too much.

He used to be a union employed iron fitter until he hurt his back way back in the day, and then for a time, he worked as a carpenter for our local school district, but he got fired from that job...and now he does nothing. If it's not a union job, it's not good enough for him.

He has all the time in the world to better himself, go back to school, heck, even get a job at McDonald's...but nope, he'd rather stay home, smoke some dope, and tell everyone else what to do.
Yeah...he's a low ambition kind of guy.

Heck, I'm a low ambition person. I'm pretty content with my life at this point...I don't need more.

That I put in bold is a total deal breaker!
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Old 05-18-2019, 09:02 PM
3,106 posts, read 1,426,037 times
Reputation: 2353
Originally Posted by Jdawg8181 View Post
I’m really not judging this girl. I just think if there are more opportunities out there, why not take them?

It sounds as if you are though. Be glad that you know what you want in life and where you want to go. This works for you but you can't apply what you see as better opportunities better life to her. If you know someone who sees eye to eye on what you've determined are better opportunities and want to help them (let's say they have no social net like family or friends to help them and they are poor), then you are free to do so. But it's best not to give this kind of thing too much thought. You will never figure it out lol.
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Old 05-18-2019, 10:28 PM
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
7,397 posts, read 4,553,576 times
Reputation: 27043
I can kind of relate to the OP.

I have met some brilliant people over the course of my adult life and gotten close to some of them. I had a friend, MIT grad, who worked at Xerox PARC and bought a proprietary operating system from them when he left to start his own business. Unfortunately he wasn't cut out for business, being more of a coder than a CEO, and it eventually failed. Then I helped him get started in the same field I was working in.

We were involved romantically for a brief time, then he made some disastrous personal decisions I can't really discuss here because they were so weird they would identify him instantly to a certain group of people. He had weight issues. I was shocked to hear he was eating a dozen doughnuts for breakfast every day. Then saddened when I heard he had had a heart attack. I thought that would be the wake-up call. It wasn't. The second heart attack killed him.

I grieve for what I see as the waste of a life, even while knowing that he lived his life as he chose. There's no reason to believe he thought his life was wasted. And still...

I have always believed in everyone's right to go to hell in their own way. But that doesn't mean I can't be sad.
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Old 05-19-2019, 12:19 AM
Location: interior Alaska
4,433 posts, read 3,288,635 times
Reputation: 13591
My full-time job is one that has benefits, pays pretty well, and required a fancy-pants education. I enjoy it, but it could eat my life if I let it. Summers I work a tourism thing that's certainly "entry-level." If I could pay all my bills and retire on the entry-level job, man, there are definitely days when I would go ahead and do that. Minimal stress, no work to take home, no weighty responsibilities...I'd probably live longer if that was my main occupation.
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Old 05-19-2019, 12:26 AM
Location: interior Alaska
4,433 posts, read 3,288,635 times
Reputation: 13591
Originally Posted by The Dissenter View Post
How come when someone thinks about “bettering themselves” it is always tied to materialistic things?
Just this. For all you know, between cashier shifts she's walking the Noble Eightfold Path and is on her way to achieving enlightenment.
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Old 05-19-2019, 08:18 AM
6,393 posts, read 1,273,075 times
Reputation: 16228
In short, not everyone has the same drive or ambition, and some people put higher priority on other things. In the case of my husband and myself, it was more important for us to have our evenings and weekends free to spend with each other and, in our younger years, I was mostly a SAHM because it was more important to us for me to put the needs of our kids ahead of those of an employer. Neither my husband nor I have ever cared about having more "success" and/or earning more money than we were offered as long as we had enough to live comfortably, and our idea of living comfortably is much less than that of most people, I think.

(Btw, I do not deride working moms or dads unless they seriously neglect their kids because they put more importance on their careers. I once had a female boss who decided to go to a social and completely optional "Business After Hours" instead of going to the ER when she was told that her six-year-old daughter had broken her arm.)
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Old 05-19-2019, 08:42 AM
4,911 posts, read 2,669,850 times
Reputation: 8942
Originally Posted by Jdawg8181 View Post
I'm sure this has been posted before but an acquaintance of mine got me thinking

She is 37. Dropped out of college, has no degree (not even associates) and works @ a food store. Now there is nothing wrong with this, she obviously earns enough to make a living, but for me, I don't understand why someone like this would not take measures to get themselves into a better job situation.

I have no idea if she is happy doing that job or not, I just know for myself, I am ambitious and I would do something like that as a temporary situation while either trying to go back to school or get a new job, but this woman has been in the same scenario since 20 years old.

This person doesn't seem to do want to do either. I get college isn't cheap, but with online colleges being the new thing now & the fact that she IS working, I don't see online college being so out of reach for her. They are very accommodating to working people and if she looked into financial assistance, maybe she would qualify .. or you take out a loan like a responsible adult.

Does anyone know anyone like this? If she is happy, it's not anyone's place to judge, but I don't really understand this mindset. Wouldn't you want to strive for the very best in life?

Your preface would indicate there being no need for this thread.
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Old 05-19-2019, 09:18 AM
Location: SW Florida
10,205 posts, read 4,782,935 times
Reputation: 21516
Originally Posted by Jdawg8181 View Post
I guess & different strokes for different folks, i realize that, but IDK I just dont understand if there are opportunities to grow your skillset & career, why wouldnt you?

I guess it comes down to ppl wanting it easy but I dont see how anyone grows as a person from constant monotony day in & day out
You may see her job as monotonous but maybe she doesn't. Maybe she has a wonderful home life and wants a stress free type of job. I've been in both types of jobs and the one that paid the best and had the most responsibility caused me to rarely be able to take a vacation and eventually caused panic attacks and other physical problems.
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Old 05-19-2019, 11:54 AM
Location: So Cal
40,211 posts, read 39,746,561 times
Reputation: 41674
Meh, if she's happy and can pay her bills what does it matter? I've done pretty well in life, for the most part. My job on paper sounds impressive. We work as consultants to building owners. The thing that matters is how a person acts and how they treat others, what we do for a living doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things. The older I get the more I believe this. Im turning 50 in a few months and when your laying on your death bed what you did for a living really isn't gonna going to register in the big picture.
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