What I Learnt Going Back To a 9-5 Job
When I moved back to Newcastle I knew I didn’t want to build up another music teaching business. I craved a new challenge but didn’t know what the hell I wanted to do and I actually kind of liked the idea of going to a normal job for a while. I also didn’t have a choice as rent had to be paid and living alone is bloody expensive!
Who knows, maybe I would love having the security of a normal job and want to do it forever. Also, after 7 years of self-employment, getting PAID time off?….hell yeah sign me up!
I ended up taking a job in insurance. Awesome.
Going from self-employed to employed was a big adjustment and I wanted to share a few of the things I learnt:
It Was Full of People Wasting Their Lives
A lot of people were unhappy there. I also met a few very talented people there. These people had skills which could potentially make them a lot of money running their own businesses but due to one of two reasons, they choose to stay in a job that leaves them miserable and unfulfilled.
Some of these people would tell me that they would love nothing more to have their own business but they were too scared to leave behind their regular pay packet. I get that. Life is expensive. However, you can still work 9-5 and start slowly building up your business on the side. When it does start to make some money, you can then go down to part-time and keep building up your business until you are financially able to leave employment all-together. Or, you can always keep a part-time job if you simply like the security that comes with it. Working 16-24 hours a week in a job you don’t adore is still ten times better than working in that job for 40 hours a week.
Some people find it easier to moan about their jobs but stay there for years and years anyway, because when they get home after work, they can’t be arsed to work any more hours in building up their own businesses. It’s easier to watch TV or go out with your friends.
Some People Genuinely Like It
A first, I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that some people genuinely like going to work for 8-9 hours a day five days a week doing exactly the same thing every single day. I still can’t in some ways. But it’s true and some people actually really like the security of their jobs and just having a really easy role with no challenges.
For a lot of these people, I discovered that their main goals in life were to simply get married, have children (if they didn’t already have these things) and just have an easy and secure job that paid the bills.
They will then retire (if they are lucky enough to reach that age) and get to enjoy a modest pension and live out a few remaining years enjoying some form of freedom.
It’s A Never-Ending Cycle Of Monotony
Eat, sleep, work repeat.
It was like being stuck in the most boring cycle I’ve ever been in. I’d have the exact same conversations a million times a day with my customers for 8-9 hours a day and I would then go home, eat dinner, watch an hour or two of Netflix and then go to bed. The next day I’d do the exact same thing.
I did this for the first couple of months before I realised that a “normal” job was definitely not for me. I then spent a couple of months researching new ideas for a business before I decided on setting up as VA.
In between calls at work, I read e-books, blogs, wrote down a million notes in my trusty notebook and started slowly building up my new business. I’d then go home and spend a few more hours each night doing the same thing and built up my new website.
On my days off, I’d do more research and started to make new contacts either online or through business networking meetings.
Sure, it meant having little to no social life for a while but I wanted to get out of the 9-5 rat race fast and sacrificing a few months of going to the pub is worth it to be happier in the long-run.
I Struggle Being Nice To Rude People
There was the odd occasion that I’d get an absolute arsehole on the phone (I didn’t work in the service department and so they usually had zero reason to actually be so rude in the first place) and I found it incredibly debilitating having to remain friendly to them because they were the company’s customer, not mine and I still had to try and get their business and keep them sweet.
The best thing about running your own business is that if you get one of these arseholes, it’s up to you how you deal with them. Obviously, you should never be telling anyone to simply “piss off” as this can literally ruin your business if said arsehole then badmouths you to everyone.
However, when you run your own business and someone is utterly appalling to you, you can simply choose to not work with them anymore.
If a client was to start talking to me like crap, I can choose not to have them as a client which is an amazing thing to have power over.
Holidays Were Always Denied!
Asking permission for time off after years of doing it whenever I wanted was utterly crap.
It’s nearly impossible to book any time off during the summer holidays or Christmas period as everyone wants time off then and so most of my requested holidays got denied.
The holidays I did get were paid however which was pretty awesome!
Sure, when you’re self-employed you don’t get paid for your holidays but having the freedom to take time off whenever you choose for me personally, is huge.
I’m So Grateful I Went Back
I quickly realised that the limitations and rules that come with a normal job are not for me. I need to run my own business and I’m so much happier to be doing so again. I LOVE the excitement and freedom of working for myself!
When I first moved back to Newcastle I was incredibly lost. I knew I didn’t want to teach anymore but I also didn’t have a clue about what I wanted to do for a while.
Although I hated the 9-5 role itself, I did love being around my colleagues every day. I met some great people and had some great laughs in that place.
I know not every 9-5 job is bad. There are some great ones out there. But if you hate the rat race and want to get out, start doing something about it today.
Have you ever went from self-employed to employed? I’d love to hear your experience of it!