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5 Myths That Trap People in Jobs

I’ve been thinking about what separates Hil and I from friends and family that are rooted in their lives with homes and jobs. Keeping in mind, this is not a better or worse judgment. There is no right or wrong here, just how you want to live your life.

Admittedly, what mystifies me is why some folks persist in their daily grind when it makes them miserable?

Again- we have many wonderful friends that are oaks and love being rooted in a community with lovely homes and satisfying jobs and relationships. But for those who aren’t that happy about their existence I wonder what stops them from creating a new reality?

First let’s dismiss the family/child responsibility myth. Here’s how it goes;

Myth #1:

I need to provide a stable environment to raise children no matter how much I hate my job, my life.

Frankly, miserable people raising miserable children doesn’t sound like a good idea. As a relatively inexperienced parent of three years, my wife and I agree it’s better to raise your children in a loving environment, no matter where you live, than providing food and shelter but being a grouch because you are unhappy about your life because of this ‘forced’ responsibility.

We also feel it’s better to show by example to our children that you need to follow your heart, not the dollar, and experience life. Life can be hard, but if we are happy and together then the children will grow up happy and, with luck, be unafraid to explore the world around them without the ingrained stereotype of ‘get a job and settle down’ ringing in their ears as they approach adulthood.

Myth #2;

You need a career.

Careers are over rated. In most cases, a career signifies working for a large company for a long time. We believe you put YOU first and work for you not the benefit of someone else. It doesn’t mean you can’t work under the employ of someone else, but it does mean you work for your benefit as long as it benefits you as much or more than the employer- not the other way around!

But that’s just not how the world works.

Who says? If you are open and receptive there are endless ways to make money (and sometimes VERY good money) that do not require being employed by others or a career. If you can’t think of a ‘out of the box’ way to earn a living you clearly have your eyes closed very tight. Just look around- people are creating jobs all around you everyday.

Myth #3;

I need benefits like health insurance and a retirement fund, that’s why I have a job.

Maybe yes, maybe no.

First the retirement. Especially over recent years you should know by now retirement is not a guarantee (unless your are a federal employee like my Dad). No matter how well you plan, something will ruin your best laid plans. Expecting a corporation to have your best interests at heart is frankly more of a leap of faith than believing in God above.

The irony, we have the ‘capacity’ to save more each year despite our lower than poverty level income than the majority of families in the United States. Why? Our overhead is lower. Not worse, just lower. In fact, many would consider our lifestyle to be ‘better’ than theirs. Again, not better just different.

The health care issue is a conundrum. With kids, we want health insurance. Because we only work seasonally, we don’t make or need 12 months worth of income. There are some affordable health care programs available to us primarily because we are in the poverty income range. In Mexico, we don’t have health insurance and the US insurance has no benefit. The best insurance in Mexico is cold hard cash. Comparably a $10,000 savings as an emergency health care fund goes a lot farther in Mexico than $250,000 will in the US.

The point being, health care is possible for us vagabonds and with the kids we think it’s important, but you don’t have to enslave yourself for the rest of your life to a job because they provide benefits.

Myth #4;

I need a home. It’s a great investment.

We all need homes, they don’t necessarily have to be brick and mortar.

If you’ve been awake for the past three years, you might realize that real estate is not exactly appreciating at warp speed. In fact, I think over the next decade we’ll be lucky to see real estate appreciate more than cost of living. What’s that mean?

Owning a home is no longer a good financial investment- as a financial investment. Sure, you got to live somewhere. But beyond the mortgage payment, the property tax, and the insurance, there’s the annual maintenance costs and replacement costs. Once you consider these expenses- which go up every year, you’re really not making money on the sale of the home. You’re just getting (most) of you’re money back.

We could argue the fine point of amortized mortgages, depreciated assets, and the value of real estate tax deductions, but the point is a home is an anchor which keep you from taking advantage of opportunities which regularly if not persistently offer themselves to you.

Myth #5;

It’s only ‘X’ more years until retirement and then we’ll fulfill our dreams.

While this is the easiest myth to dispel it is also the most persistent. Here’s my bullet list of reasons why this is crazy thinking.
• You could get hit by a bus
• The market could wipe out your retirement (ask the baby boomers)
• You could get sick and die
• You may not have the strength to enjoy your dream (not many 70 years old retirees sail around the world after a lifetime sitting behind a desk)
• You could find out your dream isn’t that fun after all and it’s too late to change.
• You may not be able to liquidate your assets (like your house) and are cash poor at an age you can’t earn more money.

Have you fallen prey to some of these myths? Think about what you really want to achieve (or see or do) in this short life we have on this planet and consider if your current path will lead you to fulfillment?

If not, maybe it’s time to ignore the ‘common sense’ approach and let your heart decide your future for a change.

As always, you’re mileage may vary.

You know an ICE COLD draft beer in Mexico is a very affordable price of approximately $1.25! Click Here to Buy Us a Beer.

3 comments to 5 Myths That Trap People in Jobs

  • Good one JC! We’ve found out how big of a myth #4 is, at least we have managed to rent the house and get out.

  • big cheese

    Hi Bill

    Atleast now you have the opportunity to go out there and explore to determine what type of life you really want to live.

    Good luck,


  • morgan outisland

    Love it. Great advice. Lots of wisdom there. Hit the nail right on the head. I’ve been wanting for several years now but i kept telling my self need more money, more time to payoff bills and before you know it has been 9 years and I have not made it toward my dream, not one bit. I’m done chasing reality. I’ll take the dream and work from there. That’s all I do anyways is work out the kinks.

    Thanks Jc, lots of nice wisdom here. Im glad to know that others think like I do but act. It makes it easier to do it, thank you