Is being a teacher worth it?

I've come to a crossroads in my life where I'm looking at different career paths. The degree I picked up in college is streamlined for a teaching career but, I never went into it and went into a couple different fields. With the amount of inconsistency on my resume, it's difficult to find a reputable job that pays well also. Teaching is an easy transition because of my degree and, well, it's not that difficult to teach, granted at a low level at least. And, the time you get off is unmatched from what I know because summers are still a thing.

I'm just wondering if there's room for growth like there is in any other field, where my career can gain traction and won't hit a dead end; for instance, the opportunity for better positions, better pay, etc. I have a plethora of questions about it but, I'm just looking for perspective mainly. Is it a good career choice or should I stay clear of it?

Work is Just Not Cutting It

I was hired at a company about 8 months ago. The job is painfully easy and dull. It is also super flexible and close to home, which is great because I have to pick up my kids everyday after school. I long for something more interesting though. The pay is decent, the people are friendly, the area of town is fun. Should I stay, or should I go now?

My dream job might make things awkward

I was just offered my dream job writing scripts for science videos in New York (very specific dream, I know), but my ex just moved there last month. I know it's a big city and I have every right to be there too, but I'm worried he'll think I moved there, at least in part, because of him. We broke things off because he was moving across the country – I live in Chicago now – and things ended sadly but not badly. We still chat every once in a while and I haven't told him yet that I'll probably be moving out there. I'm not expecting or hoping we'll get back together, but I wouldn't mind seeing him again at least platonically. I'm really excited about this job, but I'm worried about how my motives will be perceived when I finally start telling people.

Distracted at work...?

A little background: I work at a little smoothie making place inside my local YMCA. Business varies between the occasional person wandering up every 20-30mins and 6-7 people all showing up at once. When not making smoothies my only other duties are to keep my work area clean, and restock things.

My work has this (in my opinion) stupid ass rule where while you are on shift you are not to use your phone at all. While I completely understand not using it when a customer is there and actively deciding/ordering, I see no logical reason why we should not be able to entertain ourselves when all our other duties are done and no one is around.

The company's reasoning for the rule is that they think that people will not want to approach and order from someone who is distracted with their phone.

So my question: Would you be more likely to approach a food service employee who is using their phone before you arrive but looks up immediately upon your arrival to help you, or someone who is not on their phone but has the unmistakable look of absolute boredom on their face and helps you out if mere desperation to have something to do?

I hate my job, but love money

I've always done the 9 to 5 thing, and it's worked out okay so far. Most of the jobs I've had have been fine. Nothing to write home about, but they paid the bills. The job I have now though is absolutely awful. I work at a dying nonprofit with almost no staff and my boss is a monster. I really care about the organization's mission, but my boss makes my working conditions almost unbearable. First of all, because we have no staff I have to do my job and ten more that I'm honestly just not qualified for. When that shows, my boss blames me for my incompetence. She's thrown me under the bus on more than one occasion in front of the Board of Directors for things that she's directly told me to do that haven't worked the way she wanted. Most recently, she made me and the only other female employee in our office agree to work out with a personal trainer and get on a scale to weigh ourselves in front of all of our male coworkers. It was humiliating and degrading (and probably illegal). She told me that if I don't agree to her "wellness regime" that she'll let me go. What should I do?

Pursue passion full-time or get a supporting job?

Like many people on planet earth, I have dreams. The only problem is that I'm getting on in years and don't really feel like wasting any more time. However, I'm in a bit of mental pickle. I'll spare you the greater details but, I'm trying to find standing in the music industry, in many ways. I'm really open to finding anything that will pay the bills, even if the checks are small but, in the area I'm in, it's damn near impossible to find a steady paying job in music. I currently work at a studio, not even part-time, but I get a few bucks here and there. It's really just good for a resumé, but I've been searching for almost 3 months for something with no luck.

Now, my conundrum is, do I put all my efforts into my passion; job searching, experience building, skill training, portfolio, etc? Or, where my concern lies, get a job to support myself, but in the process detracting my full-time efforts towards my passion, and ultimately slowing me down. I'm also worried about getting stuck in a cycle if I do get a job outside of my preferred field, that I'll just end up there permanently, draining the life out of what I really do care about. I mean, is there a cutoff? Do I wait a certain amount of time before packing it in or should I keep searching until I find something no matter the time/cost?

What new skill should I learn?

I'm at a point in my life that I don't really know at all what I want to do with my life moving forward. Like I can't even seem to say what I'm looking for in a job because despite my varied history of work experience I've yet to really do anything that has 100% brought me happiness. So far in my life, I have studied Psychology and User Experience Design but have been hitting a stone wall trying to find anything to do with either because seemingly every job I find the remote bit interesting requires some 3-10 years of experience... However, while I try to figure out what I'm going to do for a job I figure I should use my time off to learn some new skill.

#1: Coding. While I do classify myself as a User Experience Designer, one thing that continues to annoy me is that no matter what I want to create, no matter what design the visuals and functions of, without the ability to code I will never be able to make any of the designs a reality.

#2: Learn to speak a new language. Through middle school, high school, and even college I learned that I do not learn languages well how schools try to teach them. I have however had some success learning to speak new languages through audio learning software such as Pimsleur so I'm thinking about really dedicating myself to learning at least a basic fluency in one of the languages I have downloaded right now. While this skill will not really help me (that I can see at least) in finding work, it is something that I've wanted to (and put off doing) for a while now.

#3: Photoshop Creative Suite. I've never been the most artistic person, which leads me to think this might be the most difficult skill for me to learn, however, it would also be extremely helpful in advancing my UX design skills and hopefully help me get a job at some point in the future.

Any other skills you think would be both fun to learn as well as possibly helpful in the job search I'd be happy to hear about, especially if you have a personal story about how it helped you.


Quitting a job

I'm getting ready for a career change. I've been at my current company for years, and I want to give them as much notice as possible, but I don't have my new job lined up yet. I currently work in a niche market, so it will take a minimum of a couple months to find my replacement. What should I do?

Working From Home Is Still Working

I recently restructured my whole business so I could work from home and be home more for my children. Most everyone in my life is very supportive of this, and I’m quite content with my decision. With that being said, I am still having the same problem I did in the past where a few friends insist on dropping in unannounced or calling multiple times a day when I’m working from home. It’s almost like they think I’m just lounging around with nothing to do, when in fact I’m probably busier now than before since I am working remotely from home. I know they probably wouldn’t do this if I had a job where I had a boss and was chained to a desk from 9 to 5, but then I wonder if maybe they would? They have jobs of their own and I wouldn’t ever dare to do this to them. So is this just a matter of them being selfish and having no regard for the work I do, just because I do it from home? Has anyone else experienced this problem?

Moving to a New Town

I just moved from Chicago to a very, VERY little town in Alabama for a job, which is apples and oranges. I had a really hard time moving here and have been very closed minded about living in “hick town.” My town has one of this old-timey gas stations and a population of 200, THAT’S IT. I’m not used to having to drive 45 minutes to Starbucks, or a clothing store, or any form of civilization. To top it all off, I’m homesick and I miss my Chi-Town based family. Plus, everything here smells like manure. While not trying to, I feel superior to all the people here, which is super pretentious of me, but I can’t help it. What should I do?