Why Everything In Your Life Can’t Take Top Priority

Today, I had a job interview. It wasn’t for anything too hard, just a simple part-time job. But balancing school and work and dating and friends and everything else expected of a twenty-something is overwhelming. Think about it realistically: everything in my life demands to be the dominant thing.

Your schoolwork screams out to be studied, scanned, reviewed, memorized. Everything about it is stressful. Exams pile up, pharmacy school looms. It’s all so big, and it’s all happening so fast.

Your parents say they’re the most important thing. Your mom wants to know why you didn’t call last week, and you give a generic “busy” excuse, but that doesn’t pacify her {call your mom, though}.

Your friends want to see you. They want to hang out and go to movies and go get a manicure or see a movie, and in all honesty you really can’t afford to expend the thirty buck for whatever it is, but you go along anyway because you know how much it sucks to be the only one to miss a get-together, only to hear about “THE BEST NIGHT EVER” for the next six months, the one night that you missed going out. And if you go, and nothing exciting happens, and it isn’t the best night ever, you still go the next time, because what if that time really is the best night ever?

The cute guy you’ve only gone out twice with demands your attention, too. He wants to text you, or he expects you to answer his phone calls or call him back swiftly after he calls you. Or you’re dating someone, for a while already, who you really like. He expects you to make time in your schedule to go out on Friday or Saturday night, to maybe cook one night for the two of you, to make it to the grocery store to pick up a bottle of wine, or to be awake enough by the end of the week to sit through a boring sports game of his favorite team {which you couldn’t care less about}.

Your grandmother sent you a card in the mail with ten bucks in it, so that demands a thank-you card and a phone call in a timely manner. If you don’t get on that within a few days you’re automatically a horrible grandchild {despite the fact that you have ten zillion other things going on}.

And then work on top of all that? How could anyone honestly be expected to manage all this at one time? Who in their right mind would tell a person that they’re supposed to put their job above their family, their friends, and even that hot guy. Let’s be honest: work, for most of us, is a means to an end. We work because we have to. The person who’s your boss is working because they have to. And their boss, too. The only people who are working because they “just want to” are the higher-up people at Disney, professional athletes, and people in the entertainment industry.

One thing is allowed to get top priority. Not all those things. You have to choose what’s the most important to you, and I don’t think anyone in the world would put their job ahead of their family {or their friends, for most of us}. Friends make all the work stories funny instead of awful. Friends are what matter. People. You can’t make it through this crazy life without them.

So job interviews are stressful and, in my opinion, a little unrealistic. You’re being told to put this job ahead of everything else in your life and I just don’t think that anyone going in there to interview for a job is going to do so when push comes to shove. I don’t think an interview is a realistic method of sorting out what kind of person {and potential employee} a person is. People say whatever they say in interviews because what choice do they really have? Say “no, I’m actually going to put my best friend’s wedding first even if it is the same night as the biggest company event of the year” and not get the job? Nope, we’re going to swear we would put the job first, and then pray like hell that the boss doesn’t schedule us for that day when the time does come.

Being a twentysomething is hard work these days, people. I can’t help thinking it must have been easier before technology took over. Now, within seconds, you can be reached by your boss, your coworkers, your mom, your boyfriend, your best friend, and anyone else who you’ve promised to make your “most important,” and that makes it impossible to truly “turn off” work when you want to be done at 5 o’clock on Friday afternoon. I think people should get a break from their jobs on the weekend, and I think that as a society of twenty-somethings going into the workforce, it’s our responsibility to say that we aren’t going to put up with being expected to respond to an email that comes in at 4 AM on a Sunday morning. That’s not in the job description, so why should we have to be on a leash? If I want to ditch town and leave my phone at home for the weekend, why should a stupid thing like my iPhone having my work email on it stop me?

Just a thought. More soon

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