Underemployment deserves to be the most popular job in the 21st century. Statistics have shown time and time again the number of underemployed workers on the rise, and it doesn’t seem to be going down anytime soon. On the contrary, the level of workplace satisfaction of these employees continues to move the other way.
Plenty of those who fit the category get a bit impatient with their jobs and life at times. It’s like: “is my break stranded in the middle of nowhere or is it taking a detour?” But before these ill feelings take hold of your sanity, let this article be a sort of enlightenment to shed light on your situation.
You’re not on the unemployment line.
You’re earning. You have money to get by, even if it isn’t that much or if it’s just a paycheck to paycheck type of living. The primary reason we work is survival. I believe a good pay, a title or getting in your dream company is just secondary. Satisfaction and success are just bonuses. In the recent study for unemployment in the U.S., there has been a sharp decrease in the unemployment rate. Aren’t you proud to have contributed, leading to the drastic change in the country?
You have an addition to your repertoire.
Most of us take on certain jobs just to get by, and some just to gain experience in preparation for their dream job. There are also people who take on jobs unparallel to their majors for the sake of passion. This may be temporary but it’s a springboard to success. Whatever is the case, you have something to add to your work experience on your resume. Having a long list of skills and experiences is to die for, especially now that the competition to enter big companies is tough.
You’re learning new things.
I’ve taught at an international language academy for six years and been an instructor at a university. As you can see, teaching is sort of a comfort zone for me. And here I am working as a writer and forcing myself to learn and absorb a portion of the Internet. I hated it and had a hard time memorizing stuff, but beyond the hate and discomfort, I’m learning something totally new. Nothing can guarantee that I would be able to use this on my dream job, but I could definitely put it at my disposal.
However, it’s not all skills that are up for grabs but knowing more about who we are. Our strengths, weaknesses – part of us that need pruning. Once properly dealt with, by the time we enter the company we’ve always dreamed of we’re already better equipped and refined to take on the tasks that await us.
You have a more varied exposure.
More than the skills learned during your freelance season or part-time phase are the system, the culture and the nature of the environment in a particular workplace. Each company has its own culture and system instilled to maintain order and productivity, so open your mind and observe. Adapt the good habits in a company.
If you’ve been used to beating tight deadlines, then another round of it would be easier to manage. If you’ve worked for a Cruella Deville, then another version would be much easier to deal with.
You have a wider network.
All of us aim to work in a bigger company no less, earn a higher salary and all, but what we can’t easily attain is a network of good people who we can call friends. Those who stick with us from the bottom on our way up are for keeps.
There’s a condition to this one. You’ll grow if you’ll allow yourself to. You can up for self-realization or self-discovery. Opt to look at the positive side of things. The waiting season does not equate to standing still and doing nothing. Make the most out of it. Grow by learning new things, making new friends, maturing and nurturing ourselves as a worker and as a person.
This is not to bust any popular belief or myth regarding underemployment. This is basically to somehow change the perspective of underemployed workers and shed another light to the often undermined and neglected benefits of being underemployed. With a positive mental attitude to start with, you won’t belittle the things you have right now. Instead, you’ll use it to turn the tables to your advantage, being the person you’re intended to be.