Friday, January 6, 2012

career day

Okay people. It’s about to be your big chance to DOLE OUT THE ADVICE. To me, of course. So get excited!

I’m currently in the process of trying to Figure Out What To Do With My Life: Career Edition. I figured since I’m almost 30, it’s about time to start thinking about that. Ambitious, I know.

Since my main #1 goal for my entire adult life has been to Be A Mom, preferably of the staying-mostly-at-home variety, it’s easy to see why Finding A Career has never been a huge priority. And it still isn’t. But seeing as Momhood hasn’t exactly worked out for me so far, and I will probably need to continue being employed for the foreseeable future, I may as well think of something awesome to pursue. My pursuits will, however, be of the part-time/do-it-at-home variety. Because when I’m a mom, of course, I will not be wanting to be hauling my butt across town to spend 8-5 somewhere else every day. Also, even though I am NOT a mom at the moment…I still would prefer to not be at work every waking moment. Because it doesn’t leave a lot of time to do all the other things I actually want to be doing. SO! Now we move onto the fun part: Things I Might Like To Make a Living Doing.

These are in absolutely no order whatsoever, and as you would expect, I will provide way more details than is ever necessary about my qualifications/thoughts about each ‘career’.

  1. Financial Advisor. A very specific kind of advisor, though. I know absolutely nothing about investing, stocks, 401(k)s, and all that junk. I am more of a budget advisor slash tell-you-like-it-is about why you so BROKE advisor. Those are my personal strengths: being frugal, making budgets, and being bossy. I have really enjoyed helping friends and co-workers learn to live within their means and make better choices about the stuff they spend money on. Basically I memorize everything Dave Ramsey says and then just quote that, but don’t tell that to my future clients who are going to pay me top dollar to set them straight. Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be a Financial Advisor: I’m pretty sure you have to have some sort of degree or certification to do this. Also it might be helpful to know about actual financial things, which I do not. Also, broke people probably don’t have enough money to pay me to help them with this stuff…

  1. Flower Bed Designer/Maintainer. This is not to be confused with a landscape architect or lawn maintenance person. And this is a spring/summer/fall-ONLY position—I do not want to spend any unnecessary time outdoors when it is cold. But I would like to help people decide what kind of flowers/shrubs to plant around their houses and then do that and then do simple things like weed/maintain the beds. I like doing this stuff and it appears that most of my neighbors do not, so maybe they would like to pay me to do it for them! Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be a Flower Bed Designer/Maintainer: You probably need to know a lot more about flowers, and also most of the stuff I plant dies and people probably don’t want to pay me to watch their flowers die, shrug my shoulders, and go buy another $2 plant at Lowe’s.

  1. Zumba Instructor: OK, I know I’ve only been taking Zumba for a month, but I am totally in love with it and in my own humble opinion, I think I’ve got what it takes. Except for the cool Zumba workout clothes, but I can buy those. The certification process to be a Zumba teacher is scary-easy, and seeing as how every Zumba class in town is packed full every night of the week, it seems like there’s demand. Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be a Zumba Instructor: I’m not Latin, and I’m not very bubbly/outgoing. I’m mostly just bossy and it bothers me when people keep messing up the simple steps. And I don’t particularly care to have people watching me dance.

  1. LSAT Prep Instructor: So I took the LSAT (Law School Admission Test) back in the day, and I did pretty well: well enough to qualify to teach prep courses for Kaplan or Princeton Review. There are TONS of those positions available in Athens, seeing as there’s a law school at UGA and all. You make really good money and set your own hours (see also: Zumba Instructor). Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be an LSAT Prep Instructor: I didn’t do any prep for the test myself, so I have no idea how to tell another person how THEY should prep for it. I don’t know if I would like teaching college students. I think my score has expired, so I would probably have to re-take the test myself before I could even apply for a job…which would be really ironic, I think.

  1. Life Coach: OK for REAL: I LOL every time I hear of this “job.” LIFE COACH?? But since it apparently IS a job these days, I think I should be one. I like to tell people what to do and how to do it and I like to be nosy about the details of peoples’ lives. Please note that I do not like to do any of these things unsolicited, otherwise I would be an entirely inappropriate human being. But if you wanted to PAY me to do these things for you? Shooooot… Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be a Life Coach: I could never take myself seriously when I introduced myself as a “life coach.” I think I would die laughing. Also, it might seem hypocritical for someone who is almost 30 and has no idea what to do with her life to be telling other people what to do with theirs.

  1. Author: I don’t really know what I want to write about…I just like the idea of it. I could basically spend my days lounging around coffee shops, park benches, and my sofa, passing it off as “oh, I’m working on my next book.” That sounds pretty sweet. I think I would like to be the female version of either Donald Miller or John Steinbeck. Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be an Author: I don’t have anything to write about. Also, I’m pretty sure authors spend about 99% of their time being broke. Maybe I can just do my authoring along with another career.

  1. Paralegal: It seems like a nice happy way to satisfy my lawyer dreams…none of the pesky courtroom trials or law school debt, all of the fun researching and writing papers. I’ve heard you can do it on a freelance basis, too. Lots of things sound appealing about being a paralegal. Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be a Paralegal: None, really…except I’m not sure what the demand is for them. Especially the freelance, work-from-home ones. And I’d have to get some sort of schooling or certification, but that shouldn’t be too bad (see: LSAT instructor).

  1. Blogger/Crafter: The only difference between this ‘career goal blogger/crafter’ and what I currently do is that I need to start making money. Basically I would like to maintain my current life, minus the going to work for 8 hours every day. And I would like to continue to make greater than or equal to the same amount of money I currently make. Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be a Blogger/Crafter: If it was so easy to make money doing this, I would already be doing it.

  1. Advice Columnist: This is some kind of hybrid between Life Coach and Author. People have problems, I have answers. Bonus: You don’t have to put “Life Coach” on your business card. Might be able to take yourself seriously. Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be an Advice Columnist: Uhh…the world is full of people telling you what to do for free. Pretty sure no one wants to pay for that.

  1. Beach Tester: You know…the person that has the grueling job of testing out all the beaches (resorts/amusement parks/ski lodges/etc.) in the world and then writing articles about the Top 10 ____ for Yahoo or making a show for the Travel Channel? I want to be the one making those tough decisions. Reasons I Might Not Be Able To Be a Beach Tester: Kind of hard to test beaches from home, since there isn’t a beach in my living room. Also, I get airsick. And I might get too tan.

Well, that’s about it for now. If I think of any more great potential careers, I’ll be sure to update you. In the meantime…which one do you think I should pursue? Can you think of any other jobs (real or imaginary) that I might be good for? Do you want to share your life/budget (real or imaginary) problems with me so that I can get good practice for my Life Coaching/Advice Column-Writing/Financial Planning careers?


  1. Hmm, I'm a bit of a realist, so I vote for #4 & 7... or you can just move to Texas and find a cool job here.

  2. Ha I am overwhelmed by this list, admittedly! I agree with Allison about 4 & 7, but I also think you could upgrade "zumba instructor" to personal trainer and expand your horizons a little? The only downfall is that you would have to work a lot of early mornings/nights to work with people's schedules, which might not be very child-rearing-friendly!

  3. I have a friend here (homeschooling mommy of 4) that is a Zumba Instructor and she LOVES it! She makes her own schedule pretty much and her kids go to the gym childcare.

    I have another friend that started out as a class instructor and now is a personal trainer.

  4. I agree with your other friends about 4 & 7 as the realist choices (which I generally am), BUT it is actually #1 that stuck in my head. I don't think you can do the Financial Advisor without passing very rigorous certifications. I do think that you could offer budgeting classes. It may mean working through a special non-profit organization, but I think you could really help other by sharing your budgeting gift.

  5. Love this!!! I think the paralegal/author/blogger/crafter/gardner would be perfect for you!!!! :o)

    I enjoyed this post!! Hope you're doing well!!!

  6. I think I can help you create a job that incorporates lots of those jobs and you will be helping me create MY dream job as well...

  7. My husband's ex-wife is a Zumba instructor and she's neither Latin nor bubbly. But she has bossy down to an art. ;)

  8. Have you thought about getting certified to become one of Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University Instrusctors? You can help local churches and organizations (or just a one on one thing) and really enjoy your work. Plus, it wouldn't be full time. I know you have the heart of a teacher, and a nack for budgeting and finance--it just seems like a really logical career for you. Check it out here:


I love comments almost as much as I love Mexican food. Seriously.