I can't find my niche in life...

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I don't know my own potential. I just want to do something that will bring financial security, and happiness.

Gender: Male
Age: 26
Location: NY
Occupation: Commissioned Sales Associate at Macy's.
Education: AS in Liberal Arts
2012 Salary: <10k
Future Salary Projection: I don't know.
Benefits: None.
Whats the job like: dealing with shoppers.
Recommendation: No. At times customers are rude. Getting paid minimum wage. I don't know how to break out of retail into something more financially lucrative, and emotionally fulfilling. I can't find my niche in life. I'm scared for my future.

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So it has been almost 2 months and you haven't taken any advice found in this thread?

sackland87 (Jan. 28, 2014 @ 5:12p) |

"I can't stand being older than my manager, in a lower position."

And get over this. Real quick. Capacity/Skills/Leader... (more)

bullcity (Jan. 28, 2014 @ 5:21p) |

Not liking any of the advice/help given in this thread, he thought he'd just ask again, asking the same question on the ... (more)

NantucketSunrise (Jan. 28, 2014 @ 6:23p) |

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Go to school to be a nurse. 2 years of school, about 10K for tuition and books (if you go to a reasonable community college). Then you have a job that will get you 40K+ with the potential to earn a lot of money if you don't mind working a lot. Then save up and go back to school to be a Nurse practitioner.

A nursing degree is one of the best degrees out there in terms of return on investment.

I really suggest you try going back to school. Whether it's nursing or something else, I suggest you continue your education towards some career. You've seen how lame the world is without a degree, now pursue one that can be worthwhile and don't waste any more time.

Kudos on not settling.


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Two thoughts OP, First… go to the Bakken … What an incredible opportunity…. they are begging for help there, you should easily be able to make 80-100k a year….

Or, failing that, might I suggest a life of government service. The USPS is hiring, times are changing, its a good opportunity…...

Or join the military. Spend 4 years learning a skill. Get out, continue using the skill, or get paid to go to school wherever you want and for whatever you want.

sackland87 said:   Or join the military. Spend 4 years learning a skill. Get out, continue using the skill, or get paid to go to school wherever you want and for whatever you want.
  
Or spend 20 years in the military, take the 20 year pension and move to some really low cost of living area (think Arkansas/Tennessee/Mississippi) and spend your time however you want, working or not for the rest of your life.

The military isn't for everyone, so consider everything about that carefully. Any opportunities for promotion at Macy's? Do they post internal position openings to apply for? It looks like you hate retail. I do too. With that in mind, sticking around Macy's probably isn't the best.

There's always getting some training/experience in IT and go that route. It can be hectic, so keep that in mind.

While there's nothing wrong with an AS degree, look at going for a BA. Of course a degree doesn't guarantee anything but I feel the effort is worth it.

It took a while for me to "grow up" too. Your first order of business is increasing your 10K income. At least you have no where to go but up.

Good luck.

BADADVICE said:   
sackland87 said:   Or join the military. Spend 4 years learning a skill. Get out, continue using the skill, or get paid to go to school wherever you want and for whatever you want.
  
Or spend 20 years in the military, take the 20 year pension and move to some really low cost of living area (think Arkansas/Tennessee/Mississippi) and spend your time however you want, working or not for the rest of your life.

  
Or this as well. 

Two of my biggest pet peeves:

"You have to go to college in order to succeed."

"If you join the military you have to go to war and kill people."

To the OP, you have a ton of options available to you, take advantage while you still can.

Muniee said:   I don't know my own potential. I just want to do something that will bring financial security, and happiness.

Gender: Male
Age: 26
Location: NY
Occupation: Commissioned Sales Associate at Macy's.
Education: AS in Liberal Arts
2012 Salary: <10k
Future Salary Projection: I don't know.
Benefits: None.
Whats the job like: dealing with shoppers.
Recommendation: No. At times customers are rude. Getting paid minimum wage. I don't know how to break out of retail into something more financially lucrative, and emotionally fulfilling. I can't find my niche in life. I'm scared for my future.

  Good luck. Ive felt that before and it isn't a good feeling. I wish that upon no one.

Have you tried accounting? It seems the quickest and surest way of getting a decent job.

Most people I know that were able to escape retail through accounting. 

A career should have something to do with your talents AND your passions.  Talents will help you get good grades, become competent and potentially great.  Passions make work more pleasant and give you energy and motivation.  Glassdoor can help you figure the salary part.  Some people start with a list of big money jobs and ask themselves if there's enough talent and passion in them for the profession at the top of that list.  If not, they go to the next one down, and then the next one, etc.

make porn. fulfilling and financially rewarding.

burgerwars said:   The military isn't for everyone, so consider everything about that carefully. 
So you're suggesting the Air Force?  

Bachelor's degree.  In anything better than basket weaving. 

Bachelor's degree, Bachelor's degree, Bachelor's degree. 

It doesn't get you the job, it opens the door so you can be considered in the first place. 

Muniee said:   I just want to do something that will bring financial security, and happiness.
 

  
Win the lottery and get two chicks at the same time.

Take control of your life. Decide on a career goal and work towards achieving it. Prioritize your time and stay focused. Education is the key to economic success and security. Not to bore you with my story, I was a poor kid floundering about in a fog without a clue about what to do to. I joined the service, earned the G.I. bill, went to college, rejoined the service and retired after 25 years. The education I worked hard for paid off. Today I am retired and my combined household income is $103,000. There is nothing special about me other than the fact that I worked hard and kept my eye on the prize.  Anyone can do it.  Success in life is based on the decisions we make...bad decisions result in bad outcomes...good decisions result in good outcomes.

larrymoencurly said:   
burgerwars said:   The military isn't for everyone, so consider everything about that carefully. 
So you're suggesting the Air Force?  

  
Funny, when I first started reading this post, I was going to suggest the Air Force.  My brother joined when he was in his late 20s.  The only time he's had to leave the country is for a 2 day trip to Haiti to help with earthquake relief.  Even if by some remote chance he gets deployed, he'll be relatively safe (stay on base, he's a mechanic).  From what he tells me, it pays very well considering he joined having no tangible skills, and he's getting paid to go to school.  He lives on base with his wife.  I am unclear on the details, but I think he's actually considered a civilian that performs an essential job function (maybe this? http://www.afrc.af.mil/shared/media/document/afd-070125-046.pdf ).  I do know he has a military ID that gets him all the standard perks.  

I work in IT, and I have a couple of colleagues who joined the military as a means to get a college degree (one army, one navy).  Both speak very highly of the experience, and are very thankful for the opportunities the military provided them.

OP, to find your "niche in life", you need to know WHERE your potential & passions intersect. I strongly recommend you complete the exercises in the "What Color Is Your Parachute? Job-Hunter's WORKBOOK, Fourth Edition." The 4th Edition is the latest edition, priced about $13 at Barnes & Noble stores, or as low as $10 online at WalMart or Amazon.
If you go through the workbook as a chore, you might get less out of it. If you treat the workbook as a journey of self-discovery, it WILL show you where your potential & passions intersect.
Walmart link for reference 

Look for a place that will give you an aptitude test. The test should recommend some fields of work that are suitable to your personality. I took one several years ago and switched from being a photographer to computer sciences, and it worked out great for me. Good luck!

I used to be poor, then I got rich.

I was equally happy during both periods of my life.

I used to be poor but now I'm not.

Being poor sucks and anyone that tells you otherwise was never truly poor.

sackland87 said:   Go to school to be a nurse. 2 years of school, about 10K for tuition and books (if you go to a reasonable community college). Then you have a job that will get you 40K+ with the potential to earn a lot of money if you don't mind working a lot. Then save up and go back to school to be a Nurse practitioner.

A nursing degree is one of the best degrees out there in terms of return on investment.

  
I'd second this.  Wife is a nurse, lots in the family.  Make sure you can get a licence and employed in your state with an associates though.  Many places are going to bachelors only.  Larger hospitals, usually where the money is, are increasingly hire only bachelor degree candidates.  But, if you get a few years experience somewhere else, that usually works too.  Most larger employers will then pay for your schooling from there.  So, go for any of the advanced nursing degrees (bachelors, masters, doctorate). Or go towards PA, NA, something like that.  

Starting pay in 'average' COL areas usually exceeds 40k+ full time.  (full time is 36hrs/week).  Combine that with overtime at the primary location, a second job at another employer, or to into travelling or staffing nursing, and you can easily rake in the cash.  You'll be tired.  I know 26-30yr old nurses starting to break 100k in a low COL area where the median HOUSEHOLD income is around $36k.  





 

https://career.berkeley.edu/plan/PartyGame.pdf

It didn't work out well for me though - I put in all my three choices and I ended up with:

Musical Instrument Repairers and Tuners
Patternmakers, Wood
Architectural Drafters

For the first one, I am Hearing Impaired, so that one is out. The second one required knowledge of Mathematics - which I do not have. The third one also required hearing but I did take drafting in school and enjoyed it to a point but not so much that I would have loved to do it everyday. Maybe I should have left off one of the choices or something.

You gotta give us more to work with.  You got an AS in liberal arts, evidently because you wanted to go to college.  Why Liberal Arts?

1. What drove you to get to this point?
2. Ignoring the money for the minute, what kind of job would you enjoy doing?
3. What kinds of jobs did your parents hold, and why did you not follow their career paths?

u got 99 problems but a niche aint one

FinancialAnalyst said:   
Being poor sucks and anyone that tells you otherwise was never truly poor.
 

  Considering all the government entitlements and handouts nobody in America today is truely poor.

with a two year Associates degree (A.S) at a community college you can become a Diagnostics Medical Sonographer starting out at about $45K a year and with some experiencing earning $60K+

Financial security and happiness will often lead you in different directions. Some people are lucky enough for those to converge on their career...others just find satisfying personal endeavors (family, hobbies, volunteering, travel, etc., etc.) that make up for the lack of work satisfaction.

To really be financially secure though, you need to be good at it. This may come from abilities and/or passion. So list some of your abilities and passions and it might give a little more to work with.

I am a nurse. I am glad to see that was suggested already. My entire accelerated BSN program cost < $20k. My first degree was in the humanities. I get paid $22/hr in a very low cost area ($44k/yr). I have benefits. I was hired 2 months before I graduated. My work week is 3 days. Downside: Yesterday I was puked on. That's life in Pediatric Intensive Care. (I am the only male RN.) Anyways, today is my first day of a 5 day weekend.

rsrvoir said:   Financial security and happiness will often lead you in different directions. Some people are lucky enough for those to converge on their career...others just find satisfying personal endeavors (family, hobbies, volunteering, travel, etc., etc.) that make up for the lack of work satisfaction.

To really be financially secure though, you need to be good at it. This may come from abilities and/or passion. So list some of your abilities and passions and it might give a little more to work with.

   yea. and also list what your skills and talents are and what your good at.

sackland87 said:   Go to school to be a nurse. 2 years of school, about 10K for tuition and books (if you go to a reasonable community college). Then you have a job that will get you 40K+ with the potential to earn a lot of money if you don't mind working a lot. Then save up and go back to school to be a Nurse practitioner.

A nursing degree is one of the best degrees out there in terms of return on investment.

  Hell yes. This is my answer every time these posts come up.

I have multiple friends go this route at a local community college and went from mini wage jobs to 40k in a blink of an eye. 2 of them are now NP making 2x that.
One of those now NP's  didn't graduate highschool but went GED, AA in nursing at local CC, BA online and then 2 years NP program. Now making close to 100k.
 

catanpirate said:   I am a nurse. I am glad to see that was suggested already. My entire accelerated BSN program cost < $20k. My first degree was in the humanities. I get paid $22/hr in a very low cost area ($44k/yr). I have benefits. I was hired 2 months before I graduated. My work week is 3 days. Downside: Yesterday I was puked on. That's life in Pediatric Intensive Care. (I am the only male RN.) Anyways, today is my first day of a 5 day weekend.
  My local CC will bump a female if a male applies for the program. If OP is a male this is the way to go.

pachelbel9 said:   
larrymoencurly said:   
burgerwars said:   The military isn't for everyone, so consider everything about that carefully. 
So you're suggesting the Air Force?  

  
Funny, when I first started reading this post, I was going to suggest the Air Force.  My brother joined when he was in his late 20s.  The only time he's had to leave the country is for a 2 day trip to Haiti to help with earthquake relief.  Even if by some remote chance he gets deployed, he'll be relatively safe (stay on base, he's a mechanic).  From what he tells me, it pays very well considering he joined having no tangible skills, and he's getting paid to go to school.  He lives on base with his wife.  I am unclear on the details, but I think he's actually considered a civilian that performs an essential job function (maybe this? http://www.afrc.af.mil/shared/media/document/afd-070125-046.pdf ).  I do know he has a military ID that gets him all the standard perks.  

I work in IT, and I have a couple of colleagues who joined the military as a means to get a college degree (one army, one navy).  Both speak very highly of the experience, and are very thankful for the opportunities the military provided them.

  I owe everything I have and am to my time in the service. Without taking advantage of that time in, I would be serving you fries right now.

catanpirate said:   I am a nurse. I am glad to see that was suggested already. My entire accelerated BSN program cost < $20k. My first degree was in the humanities. I get paid $22/hr in a very low cost area ($44k/yr). I have benefits. I was hired 2 months before I graduated. My work week is 3 days. Downside: Yesterday I was puked on. That's life in Pediatric Intensive Care. (I am the only male RN.) Anyways, today is my first day of a 5 day weekend.
  
Downsides abound of course, but if you like the work, even every once in a while, I think most people believe it's worth it.  And, the money doesn't hurt either.  How much you can make all depends on how much you're willing to work, and when.  

Just some observations about the profession, since many times, someone else will come into a thread with similar questions as the OP:

I'm an electronics design engineer, with a bachelors in Computer Engineering, minor in math and CS, and school was pretty intensive.  I have a very well paying job for the area.  Yet, my wife makes more than I do per hour, get better benefits, more time off, etc. If she works overtime, or holidays, or picks up extra shifts, she blows my income out of the water.  We're lucky in that sense I guess.  She has a tremendous earning capacity, especially in short term bursts.  Want to stay in a nicer condo for the vacation, just pick up an extra shift; problem solved. 

Other benefits she gets, that I don't, and wish I did:
She gets random bonuses throughout the year.  Sometimes we don't even know what they're for.  I get a large bonus at the end of the year.
She accrues roughly 7 weeks of vacation a year.  I get 3.5 - 4, but have more flexibility.  
She can make an extra $1500-$2000 by working a well selected holiday/overtime weekend.  I'm salaried.
Last year she got just over a 7.5% match to her 401(k).  I get 3%.
Her health insurance costs less than $15/month, and it's actually pretty good insurance.  
She's very portable.  She can work at multiple locations in our area without losing seniority/pay, etc.  If we move, her finding work isn't a concern at all.
She gets tuition reimbursement, no questions asked really, even outside her field.  I could ask here, but no one ever has.
She gets free immunity from ever disease known to man, and some that aren't yet.  I, sadly, don't and must suffer when she brings it home.  Luckily, by now, I think I've been exposed to almost everything, including TB!  YEA!!!

do178b said:   
FinancialAnalyst said:   
Being poor sucks and anyone that tells you otherwise was never truly poor.

  Considering all the government entitlements and handouts nobody in America today is truely poor.

  
Most "government handouts" are really corporate welfare for companies like WalMart since no one could survive on what they pay otherwise.

I can emphasize with you.

First of all your salary sucks so much there is little point in doing it apart from the interaction with other humans. But this is also good you can quit tomorrow for something else, if it doesn't work no big deal. Didn't you say you live in NY? Get a bar job.

Regarding passion with your job, great if you have it but I feel for a lot of us this doesn't happen. I feel like as long as I don't hate my job that is ok.

It is very possible to have a fulfilling life and a job you only think is OK.

How are you at sales? Software sales is one of the easiest way to make a $100k

can you last a college degree? Only start it if you are sure you can.

Take some Time... reflect on what YOU want... " if you find a job you Enjoy doing, you'll never 'work' another day of your life....
few here mentioned learning a Trade... like construction, etc, America is gonna NEED people who can actually DO something...

Good Luck!

saladdin said:   
sackland87 said:   Go to school to be a nurse. 2 years of school, about 10K for tuition and books (if you go to a reasonable community college). Then you have a job that will get you 40K+ with the potential to earn a lot of money if you don't mind working a lot. Then save up and go back to school to be a Nurse practitioner.

A nursing degree is one of the best degrees out there in terms of return on investment.

  Hell yes. This is my answer every time these posts come up.

I have multiple friends go this route at a local community college and went from mini wage jobs to 40k in a blink of an eye. 2 of them are now NP making 2x that.
One of those now NP's  didn't graduate highschool but went GED, AA in nursing at local CC, BA online and then 2 years NP program. Now making close to 100k.

  The ones making near 100K, 40 hours a week or more? how much more?

nixmahn said:   
saladdin said:   
sackland87 said:   Go to school to be a nurse. 2 years of school, about 10K for tuition and books (if you go to a reasonable community college). Then you have a job that will get you 40K+ with the potential to earn a lot of money if you don't mind working a lot. Then save up and go back to school to be a Nurse practitioner.

A nursing degree is one of the best degrees out there in terms of return on investment.

  Hell yes. This is my answer every time these posts come up.

I have multiple friends go this route at a local community college and went from mini wage jobs to 40k in a blink of an eye. 2 of them are now NP making 2x that.
One of those now NP's  didn't graduate highschool but went GED, AA in nursing at local CC, BA online and then 2 years NP program. Now making close to 100k.

  The ones making near 100K, 40 hours a week or more? how much more?

  The average hourly rate for NP in 2012 looks to be around $48.50 from a least two sources, although the BLS puts it at more like $43.25.  Still, at $48.50, it pretty easy to hit 100k without working overtime.  

Skipping 97 Messages...
sackland87 said:   So it has been almost 2 months and you haven't taken any advice found in this thread?
Not liking any of the advice/help given in this thread, he thought he'd just ask again, asking the same question on the same website:
http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/finance/1337546/

====
Today the OP wrote, "I have the drive, where are the opportunities."

No, OP, you do not, at present, have "the drive". 

You could have mal-adjusted expectations of the world, modern times, yourself, society, etc. 

I think you should go to a counselor and have that person help you realistically assess your situation/personality/aptitudes and help you develop a plan for moving your life forward.



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