Friday, February 13, 2009

Is It Worth It?

Now that I'm in my 30s, climbing up the career ladder, holding a pretty high position and taking home a fair amount of $ each month, I'm asking myself .... "Is it all worth it?"

After 3 months into the new job, I can say with conviction, it is not.

I thought maybe it's me. Maybe I've not grown into the new role. Maybe my job scope is different now and I need to adjust. Maybe it's a new environment and I've not assimilated.

I'm feeling so much self doubt and anxiety. I work such long hours. And the worst thing about it is going home thoroughly exhausted but not being able to sleep cos my mind is still whirling from 14 hours of brain picking. So I end up with a lack of sleep but needing to start the next day with a run.

Being this high up in a corporation is new to me. So I spoke to a few friends. Friends who were older and had more experience in the rat race.

"Does it get any easier the higher up you go?" I asked them.

"No" was their immediate answer.

That doesn't help matters does it!

One friend suggested that I quit everything, move to an island and catch fish to feed myself. That's all well and good if i were white. But being Asian, that's just not in my blood.

Money is very important. But even I think you should not sell your soul for it.

"Is it worth it?" i asked a few other friends.

"No" was their immediate answer. Again.

So not only is it not worth it but it gets harder?

That's not nice at all.

So why do we do it? I don't know. All I know is that I go home and feel like crap everyday. I literally drag my feel through the door because I've that little energy left. The money in the bank at the end of the month is great tho. But is it all worth it?

Probably not.

No one ever said on their death bed, "I wished I spent more time in the office".

Again, then why do we do it? I'll go away and ponder about that now.


Suzanne said...

Hey Bubbles,
Sounds like a really stressful life over there. Hang in there.
Keep your charisma, or the courage to be different. And if you need to stand up, do so, no one should be bullied by anyone - client, colleagues or company.
*Big hugs*

Bubbles said...

Thank you Suzanne. Your words of encouragement really help.

* Big hugs back *

Fieran said...

Hey, I'm still reading! :)
Anyway, regarding your question...I think:
1. When we are single and young, etc..we want to prove ourselves to the world. So we work like crazy and climb up the ladder slowly but surely.
2. When we are married (or in a relationship) and own a house, etc., we work really hard to pay off mortgages and to have this nice comfortable lifestyle where we can go shopping whenever we like, travel, sightsee and just BE.
3. When we have kids etc, we work really hard to put our kids through school and give them the best clothing, education, and promise of life.
4. When we have finished all the responsibilities, we reminisce with our friends/family about life back then. Maybe this is when we actually get some rest?

Bubbles said...

Hi Fieran!

Thanks for still reading!! It means so much to me even tho I'm not so consistent anymore.

Regarding your comment, does it mean we work really hard for about 40 years of our lives and only get rest after we retire? That's a really long time and at the rate I'm going, I'm not sure if I'll last another 40 days.

Especially in Asia where everyone is so competitive and it's all work work work. I'm trying to achieve a work / life balance but that's really hard when my boss asks me to bring work home.

Oh well, this too shall pass. Guess given the economic situation, having a job is a blessing in itself even tho it's on that's killing me slowly.

Fieran said...

I know what you mean. My dad is 59 and is still working. Well its partly my fault because he educated me in Australia and paid for my fees, etc... Makes me jealous of European people who actually retire at 50+ and get to "enjoy life". Norwegians move to Spain to retire, Germans move to Italy. Their lives are so nice.

I get what you mean about the balance. My Norwegian colleagues are married with kids but they still have time for themselves. It's not like they are sleep deprived and out of shape at all.

This working 24/7 is indeed an Asian thing. The way we compete with each other. I guess ultimately you have to zero in on what exactly you are looking for. I think the lifestyle is part of the reason why some Malaysians migrate. They don't want to work on weekends and they don't want to work after 5pm.

But I am confused too, because my Dad used to work from 8am till 9pm for more than 20 years, its crazy. I don't want that lifestyle. I want to have time for the gym, time for my friends, time to just bum around, so I chose not to work in Malaysia. That could be your other option.

Gosh, I hope I don't sound like a brain-washer :(

Bubbles said...


Ur dad did it cos he wanted to. I'd love to be able to educate my kids overseas if I can manage it later. There's nothing life living the campus life and studying overseas. A completely different experience.

Yeah Asians are too competitive. Put too much emphasis on achievement. Don't sit back and take time to enjoy life. And there's massive pressure here to get ahead in every aspect.

Migration is something I am considering. ;)

But now isn't the right time. Friends who have migrated to Oz recently have had issues looking for a job.

Somehow taking on a low or mid level overseas still means you can have enough money to live a pretty good life.

How's your life over there?