Ask The Swag Gal – December 29, 2010

This week’s Ask TSGal comes from a confused user, trying to pick the right career.

After looking for full-time employment for nearly 3 years, I now have two job offers. The first is a position at my son’s school. Even though I am a licensed teacher, this job is as an assistant (no jobs in my field available). Hours are same as students, same days off as my son (mostly), less than 5 minutes from home, but pay is minimal. Second job is an office job 30-45 minutes from home with no traffic, longer hours, not as many holidays, but pay is better and benefits are amazing! Which job should I take? I value time with my 3 young children and husband and am afraid to sacrifice that for a couple more dollars per hour. What should I do SwagGal??

Dear 3kingsmom,

Let me first congratulate you on your not only one job offer, but two job offers! You do seem to be in a predicament, but this is a good one to be in. Having choices is always better than being stuck with one option. I believe that happiness should always help drive your decision. So you need to ask yourself which job would make you happier? It seems like you would be happier in a job that gives you more time with your family, which is fine. Having a job that you are not happy with will only stress you out. Regardless of the pay and the benefits, I fully believe in choosing a place that you would love to work at. I am lucky enough to have a job that I love. It just makes your life that much more worry-free when you aren’t dreading to go to work every morning. By the way you described it, it sounds like the position at your son’s school is great! The hours are perfect, it’s convenient, and it’s related to your field. Keep in mind that the job that you choose now does not have to be the career that you are stuck with for years to come. You mentioned that you are a licensed teacher, so having a teacher’s assistant position on your resume can definitely help you in the future. Rack up some hours and experience, and then you’ll be even more qualified when teaching positions become available. Although the office job has better pay and benefits, it is not in your field and it doesn’t seem to suit your family-oriented lifestyle. Take your options and embrace them. Whichever job you choose right now does not have to be forever – that’s the beauty of it. This can be a transitional job that guides you towards a full-time position in your field that correlates good pay, great benefits, and time with your family. Use this as a stepping stone, and enjoy it in the meantime.

Good luck! Wishing you success in whichever path you choose to take.