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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was accepted into my local and started working in April. I bought $300 or so in tools and I have been working 40+ hours every week. The paychecks are good, but there are a lot of things I don't like about this job and I think I would be much happier working elsewhere. Maybe I just need an attitude adjustment, but a career change would be terrific. I am 32 and have been applying to jobs non-stop, at least a dozen a week, for the past five years. despite having a bachelors in Journalism and a short career in writing and editing, the only jobs I have gotten are at bicycle shops where the crappy pay and hours are unsustainable, and this electrical gig, which makes me want to throw myself out of an 11th floor window of the sweat-box building I am working in.

(I can go into more detail about the things I don't like about this work, but that will result in a lot of melodramatic garbage that you probably don't want to read.)

here's the rub: I might be running out of time. I start the training program this September and tuition fees of $600 are due by August 1. have two options:

1. keep looking for job and risk wasting money on tuition and feeling like a quitter.

2. keep doing a job I hate and hope that I somehow grow to love it or end up with a divorce and a beer belly as a consolation prize.

so I ask you-
if you love your job, did you always love it?
if you hated it at first, what changed, about the job or your attitude, that allowed you to love it?
if I cannot reconcile myself with electrical work and manage to find a job in a more suitable career, but I have already started school, I understand that I will become "indentured" at some point. I have searched, but no one has defined exactly that that means, other than I have to attend class and work. that's fine, but if I find my Dream Job three months after starting school, what do I loose? I would expect to loose my tuition, that's fine, but do I owe the training program anything else?

also, I looked up "indentured electrician" and this image popped up right away:


so it can't be THAT bad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
there is already plenty of room. I will not be missed. of the 12 applicants who were interviewed when I was, all 12 had work the next day. I showed up sober and able to speak in complete sentences and I had the job. the problem where I live is a lack of people willing to do the work, so my leaving will not help or hurt anyone but me.
 

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If your responsibilities are minimal (no kids) then keep searching for a job you will enjoy, IMO it is important to like what you are doing.


I hear the homeless are looking for a few good men.:laughing:
 

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I liked being an electrician at first but it all went down from there. It will only be harder to get out once you are making JW scale because you will probably have to make less to start in a new direction.

So my advice is to look for a job you like and has the potential and make the switch.
 

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Our apprentices sign a contract when they accept the position. The contract says that after they complete the 4 year program and they will stay on as a journeyman with the company for at least another 2 years after obtaining their license. If they fail to hold up their end of the bargain, the contract states they will have to pay back the company for all of the their schooling expenses. However, this is very clear when they sign the agreement.

What kind of work are you doing? Is it not what you thought it would be? Is it really the the work you hate, or is it actually someone you work with? Don't let one person change your mind.

I always enjoyed the work, and there are many different niches with different types of work for electricians, and the job can also lead to other opportunities such as management or engineering.

Do you have a family you are responsible for taking care of, or is it just you? If it's just you, do whatever makes you happy; if you are supporting a family then take care of business first and make darn sure you have another good solid opportunity lined up before giving this up.
 
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I would have no problem dealing with a job that I hate. There's always another one. I've hated working for a few of my past companies. It's rare for apprentices to love the job they're doing, they mostly get the garbage. Plus they rarely get a choice in what they're doing.

However, I would have a huge problem if I hated were the career was leading. If that was the case, I wouldn't hesitate to find another path. Finding the right calling in life is no easy task, but I wouldn't under any circumstances settle for one which made me unhappy.

One of my favorite things in life is watching somebody that's truly in their element. Be it a carpenter, a salesman, or even a bus driver, it's really awesome watching somebody rock it out. Far too many people are miserable. Far too many people settle on the wrong career, knowing full well, they weren't ready to make a choice in the first place.
 

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I liked being an electrician at first but it all went down from there. It will only be harder to get out once you are making JW scale because you will probably have to make less to start in a new direction.

So my advice is to look for a job you like and has the potential and make the switch.
This.



I too liked this job when I first started. Now, 15 years later, I absolutely hate it but I have too many life responsibilities and make too much money to quit and start over doing something else. If you don't like the job now, it won't get any better. Get out while you can before you become trapped also.
 

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This.



I too liked this job when I first started. Now, 15 years later, I absolutely hate it but I have too many life responsibilities and make too much money to quit and start over doing something else. If you don't like the job now, it won't get any better. Get out while you can before you become trapped also.
44 years and I still love it.
 

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There is nothing like working a career that you actually enjoy in my opinion. If i were you id look into getting out asap. Then again according to your post it seems like there are no jobs in your area, so take that into consideration. I took a job at the utility almost a year ago and love it. Just got a letter of acceptance into an apprenticeship i applied at prior to starting my current job but i ain't going anywhere! Sounds like you need to balance how much you enjoy a job and how capable that job is for supporting you family.
 

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It sucks being on a high rise. At least for me it was.
I look back on that experience an very valuable. One for having done it, second I knew that the construction side of our trade was not for me. Some guys love it.

There are almost an unlimited number of facets in our trade. Some are very physical but most are not. I suggest you ride it out a bit longer, get your yellow ticket and some experience under your belt.
Stay out of debt and don't make a house full of babies so that you can remain flexible.
You can always apply your degree into a BS when you get out. Some of your training time can be converted into hours in some schools.
If you have a trade, you will always have a bit of a cash cow in an emergency.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
to address some of your questions: I have been trying to nail down exactly what I dislike so much so that I can change it, or label it unchangeable.

I think what bugs me the most is the constant change. I have worked four places in three months. only one of those jobs was relatively close to home. the rest have been 30-90 minute commutes. I prefer stability. it sounds like it only gets worse later in my career. I have spoken with a lot of more experienced Journeymen who say they travel all around the state, country, or even the world for work. two of the guys on my last job spend a cumulative 4 years in the Middle East in recent years just to find work. that would be NOT good for my marriage! ideally, I would like to be able to ride my bicycle to the same job every day, and that won't happen on a 70-mile commute with a 40-pound tool box.

also, it is HOT where I live most of the year. call me a wimp, but I can handle sweating and this is absurd. spending 10 hours a day in a tall building with no windows, no fans, and no AC is brutal. I can wring my jeans out at the end of the day and leave a big puddle of sweat on the ground. then they give you warm water to drink. am I renovating a building or building a pyramid for Pharaoh? this makes me want to drink a beer and go straight to bed at the end of the day.

I think the thing is that this job is eating my whole life. I want to work to live, not the other way around. maybe the work will have to be less intense once school starts, but this summer has flown by in a blur of work, work, and more work. I am making decent money that way, but it feels like work takes 99% of my energy.

as for exit options, I bought a new car a few months ago, and a new house. my wife makes decent money, but not enough to support us both. if I spontaneously quit, we would probably lose the house in a few months. not worth it. i would rather be unhappy with my job than lose everything else.

thanks for the input. I find that about half of the Journeymen I meet love their jobs and the other half hate them. I don't want to end up like the latter.
 

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Damn dude, that sucks. Did you buy your car and house when you got word that you got the job?! It'll be tough getting a job with the degree that you have from what i hear. The only "good" advice i can give you right now is to have a serious convo with your wife and let her know that this wasn't your year but things will get better. Since you have a little electrical experience your best bet might be to look for electrical work that is nothing like you described in your previous post and take it from there. Where do you live? P.S. I've been known to give horrible advice
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
My wife hayes her job more than i hate mine, so i will stick it out as long as i have to. Hopefully my attitude will change or i will fond a way out. My main concern is what will happen if i quit after being "sworn in" and indentured. That sounds like serious business.

We bought the car and the house before i got this job, knowing that we could scrape by with my old job and hoping that I could do better. I am doing better. And i like parts of my job, i just think i could do better.
 

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My wife hayes her job more than i hate mine, so i will stick it out as long as i have to. Hopefully my attitude will change or i will fond a way out. My main concern is what will happen if i quit after being "sworn in" and indentured. That sounds like serious business.

We bought the car and the house before i got this job, knowing that we could scrape by with my old job and hoping that I could do better. I am doing better. And i like parts of my job, i just think i could do better.
Well usually after they swear you in you have a probationary period of 1,000 hours where they can nix you from the program for any reason (mostly its for guys not cut out for the job I guess). I knew a guy in my class who quit after our first year and nothing happened to him.
 
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