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Why So Many People Are In Jobs They Hate

By: Brian Kim - July 23, 2007

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It’s gotten to the point where it has become the norm in our society to complain about your job at the end of your day to your friends and family.

It’s normal. This is how it’s supposed to be. That’s how life is. There’s no other way around it. You can’t escape it. That’s why it’s called work they say.

Somewhere along the line it happened. It just did. You took a job and you got “stuck”, but you stayed with it even though you hated it.

You dread the thought of going to work Sunday evening. Your stomach sinks as you pull into the parking lot Monday morning. You count the seconds until the clock hits 5 in the afternoon.

How did all this happen? How did the young kid you saw in the family album, smiling ear to ear, without a care in the world, filled with hopes, desires, and dreams, how did it all go wrong? Where did it all go wrong? When did it all go wrong? Can we track our steps back to the source of the problem?

To do that, let’s paint the typical life that the majority of people go through.

You come into this world as a crying baby, you slowly learn how to walk, everyone tells you how cute you are, you go to school, you act in a school play, you play handball, you go to middle school, your body starts to change, you get curious about the opposite sex, you hang out with your friends, go to the movies, etc.

Then high school comes along and you start hearing the whispers from the adults.

“What are you going to do when you grow up?” “What college are you going to?” “What are you going to major in?”

The college conveyer belt begins.

“Get a degree and you’ll be set.” “College is the answer to career success.” “College will get you a high paying job and respect from the rest.”

With all this constantly being preached to our high school kids, and no other options being put on the table, they automatically begin to follow “the path”.

They get into college as an undeclared major or choose a “safe” major until they decide what to study.

This is where the paths of each student seemingly start to diverge, but in reality, are all part of the same path that most people go on.

Some students go to law school or med school because that’s what their parents told them to do. Some students major in engineering for the money. Some students major in computer science because it’s the current “hot trend”. Some students major in liberal arts.

Case in point, all of them graduate and they begin to reap the seeds they’ve sowed.

The seeds of conformity.

And who can blame them? They don’t even realize it until its too late.

The student who became a lawyer or doctor soon despises it because it was not his choice to make, but he feels trapped due to the enormous amount of loans he has taken out to finance his education so he feels he has no choice but to press on.

The student who went for the major that proves to pay the most money, soon realizes it’s not all about the money. Money does not buy happiness. It enslaves people. It takes away time from them and their family. The MTV lifestyle he saw does not exist in reality.

The student who majored in the hot trend is a mix of the above two. He made the choice outside himself AND for the money.

Then come the students who major in liberal arts degrees, degrees that people on the outside deem as “useless” (i.e – “What are you going to do with a degree in philosophy?”) and they bitch and moan about how there are no jobs and soon realize that a college degree does not entitle you to anything. They find that work experience and marketable skills comprise of the other side of the “college coin” that nobody ever mentioned to them.

And one of the most unspoken things about the glories of college education that inevitably “shock” college graduates is the debt they incur and must pay back after they graduate. The average is roughly the same as paying off a loan used to buy a brand new entry level luxury vehicle with no money down.

Authority figures ranging from parents, to teachers, to counselors had good intentions when pushing students toward the college track because that’s what worked for them, for their generation, but not now.

Case in point, there’s a lot of post college disillusionment going on these days and rightfully so because most people felt they were “lied” to when they were young.

A couple months after they graduate from college, they sense that something was wrong with “the system”, that it did not deliver what it had promised them.

In an ideal world the educational system would be set up to “fit” each person with their ideal job/career. It might help identify potential entrepreneurs and encourage them to start their own businesses. It might help identify potential architects, designers, analysts, etc.

Using this approach, society AND the individual would benefit.

You would find the best fit for the best person while they are still young to set them on the right track and society in turn would get the best workers for the best jobs and the best entrepreneurs for the best businesses and the individual would be happy doing the work they were suited for, and doing a stand up job at it as well.

But again, that’s in an ideal society.

The educational system is outdated now. It is failing our children. It needs to be fixed. Colleges are proud of the fact that they don’t offer courses that will help in real life. And you’ll find that after talking with a lot of college graduates, that they never applied what they learned. That’s not to say that all college is bad. College is great if you’re specializing in something – medicine, law, engineering and then there’s the intangibles of college that also help – network connections, job fairs, life-long friends, potential marriage mates, etc.

The educational system itself hasn’t failed completely; it’s just the mindset surrounding it that has failed as it has become outdated.

If the educational system has failed to keep up with current events, where can the solution be found next?

Again, in an ideal world, it would be the corporation.

The more corporations begin to realize that more than 80% of their workforce absolutely HATE their jobs, the more they realize this hatred leads to loss of time and money and productivity, the more that companies begin to realize that happy people are productive people and that happy people are those who like what they’re doing, the more they will start to invest in products and services geared toward fitting the right people in their companies with the right jobs within their companies, and the more happier both companies and workers, not to mention shareholders, will be.

Again, in an ideal society, all this would be great. But as we all know, we are not living in an ideal society. The world is changing too fast and the system can’t keep up.

Up to a certain point, you can blame the education system and all the proponents of it for putting you on the college conveyor belt. Up to a certain point, you can blame the economy for putting you in a job you hate. Up to a certain point, you can blame “the capitalist system” in general for your troubles.

But the hardest pill to swallow is that it’s up to YOU to find the job you love.

And that it was always up to you to do it. You were just too young to have realized it.

The trouble is nobody thinks for themselves and it’s hard to blame them because we are not taught to think for ourselves at a young age and it becomes that much harder to acquire this habit later on in life.

We are taught to conform. Individualistic thinking is discouraged. It’s dangerous to have people think for themselves in society.

And it’s not a conspiracy. It’s just the natural mechanics of any society. Look at any society and you will find this to be true.

Nobody is going to tell you the kind of job you love to do and in reality, nobody can do it for you because only you know yourself the best.

You need to take some time to do deep introspection. Look within first, then without to find something that matches. If you do it the opposite way, it’s a crapshoot. You might get lucky but chances are, you won’t find a match.

The common thread here on why so many people are in jobs they hate is because they conform in the sense they are taught the “look outside and automatically accept philosophy”, not the “look inside, then look outside to see what matches” individualistic type philosophy.

Imagine you’re in a shoe store and you buy a pair of rugged hiking boots that fit well above your ankles.

But you want to play tennis with these shoes. It’s not going to help is it? Plus the size of the shoe you bought is about 4 times too big.

Would it not make sense to decide FIRST what kind of shoe you want to buy based on the activity you plan to use it for? To measure your size shoe to find the size that fits right? To determine the color and style of it to match your own personality?

How ironic it is that we practice this “within, then without” philosophy when we buy our cars, our shoes, our clothes, but when it comes to something that we will be doing for half of our adult lives, we never apply the same philosophy.

Some people still don’t understand the importance of this “within, then without self introspection” philosophy and they start job hopping, wandering around, hoping it will all work out. Get some jobs as an administrative assistant, get a job in sales, marketing, customer service, hoping to find that “it” and while it may work sometimes, it takes a lot of time just because it’s like a blind man groping around every which way. True it may work and help, but it’s a long shot.

Still others cling to their jobs they hate like life jackets, afraid to take risks, to leave the safe job, and further compound their misery by piling themselves up in debt racking up purchases with their credit cards after being led to believe from advertisers that it will make them feel better about themselves. They still have the conformity mentality.

So what to do now?

Nobody is going to show you the way. Nobody can really show you the way. They can guide you, but it’s up to you to do it.

The system has failed. It’s up to you to create your own system.

The very first thing is to start thinking for yourself. Question things. Question the norm. Look within. Start doing things for yourself. This will be extremely hard because you’ve been conditioned your whole life to not do this. Go down paths you truly want to go despite what your friends and family will think about you.

To help with your journey, here's the very first article I wrote on the blog that garnered worldwide attention on the day of its release:

How to Find What You Love to Do

And the follow up book that was created as a result of huge demand from that article:

How to FINALLY Find What You Love to Do AND Get Paid For Doing It: The DEFINITIVE Guide to Finding and Successfully Pursuing Your Passion

Know that your path may look like a zig zag to yourself and to those close to you, but look at from sufficient distance and you will see it’s really a straight line leading you to where you want to be.

We have to think for ourselves. The sooner this is taught to our children, the better. Unfortunately, it’s simply not in society’s best interest to do this. Society functions well when there is conformity.

That’s not to say that the whole “go to college” mentality is bad. There is a glass ceiling for those without a college degree. Having a degree can open up a lot of doors and opportunities.

The point is to look within first, then without, in order to find a college and a major that matches accordingly.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with going college. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with not going to college. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with deciding to forge your own path after high school.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with any of the above choices provided it’s based on the inside - what you believe in, what kind of life you want, what you stand for, what you think you can do well, etc.

Some people lie down and give up, sticking to jobs they hate, and rationalize it any which way to make themselves feel better, but that proves to be futile. Who are you kidding? Your working life accounts for half your adult life and you’d be a fool to think it doesn’t impact other areas of your life. Your health, your friends, your family, relationships, finances, etc. It impacts all of it.

Would you spend half your day in an environment that is “toxic” to your mental, emotional, and even physical health and expect it not to impact your life?

I recently read on Yahoo that people spend $30,000 for a wedding. Keep in mind that a wedding lasts a single day. In fact, it lasts less then a day. They hire a caterer, wedding planner and plan for months, sometimes even years in advance and go all out.

It just goes to show you how powerful conformity is. People will spend $30,000 on a wedding that lasts for a single day because that’s what others are doing or that’s what wedding planners tell them they should do, but they will not spend $30 to invest in books, articles, tapes to help them find what they want to do for the rest of their lives.

Self introspection and the ability to truly think for yourself is probably one of the VERY best investments you can ever make in your entire life.

Don’t ever conform to other people’s wishes.

Look within and life will conform to your very own.

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43 Responses to “Why So Many People Are In Jobs They Hate”

  1. Crystal Says:

    Thank you for this article. It has validated made my “zig zag” path.

  2. Brian Kim Says:

    No problem Crystal. I’m glad it’s helped.

  3. S. White Says:

    Amen x 10,000!

  4. Ingrid Says:


    Thank you so much for enligting me (I belive for many people too) with your sharp words. I was went thru the exactly the pass that you described in your article. When I was 22 years old, I got my first master degree in Mechanic engineering without thinking what was for myself or not. I hate it after that. By seach for what I really like to do back then which is 20 years ago, then I got my second master degree in computer science, obviouslely it was with the trend. I worked as computer program for big well known company for 4 years, I hated it. By seach what I really want to do, I became mortgage broker and worked the very good years for 3 years because the market and time was right. Now the time has gown, I loss my motivation again……

    My son who is teenager asked me Where do you get so much engergy do what you doing and accompish what you accoplished. What is your goal? My answer him is: Son, I really wish I found what I love to do, but thru so many years struggles and changes I did not find. The only motivation for me to accomplish all I did is that I belive whatever I decide to do, I will do my best….

    I read you article of How to find what you love to do many times, I follow the steps, write down the list of my skill and interest, I found that I have lots on the skill list maybe thru my hardwork and education, some on the interest list. But I stuck on the next step of asking my self “What would I love to do on daily basis utilizing both my skills and interests that will add significant value to people?”. Most my interest are like: learning, reading, self development, accoplish, reseach answer, amend my own cloth….either not specific or just for myself without benifit others. I asked friend to help, my friend say that not every body can found their passion. I know that most people will say that, but I do not want to giving up because that is my over 20 years seaching topic.

    Brain, would please give me some help to get over my stucking point so I can keep moving..
    Please forgiving my spelling and poor writing. I have to use the excuse of Englist is not my first language. It took me a quite courage to write to you.

    By post my story and discussion, hope that will benifit others.

    Sincerely yours,

  5. Mike M. Says:

    Thank you so much for this website. I am in my second year of college and still wondering what I wanted to do with my life, and this site has really helped me to decide. I had always put off this decision, because it is hard question to ask of yourself. Parts of it had always scared me; whether or not I would choose the right thing, and whether or not I would make enough money. Through the help of your site, I found that I already knew in the back of my head what I really wanted to do more than anything, but that I was afraid. I was afraid of the ultimate question, what if I am not good enough, but you helped me realize that it doesn’t matter because I would do anything to get good enough. I think that the fear of failure is one of the top reasons for people not to decide to follow what they really want to do, and I just wanted to thank you for helping me get past it.


  6. Brian Kim Says:


    First off thank you very much for having the courage and taking the time to write all that, especially when English is not your first language. Despite that, I understood everything that you said.

    The first thing I want to say is that perhaps those 20 years that you say you’ve been searching for have been spent gathering up all the information and experiences that you will need to find what you love to do. You have to look at it that way. You’ve accomplished a LOT in 20 years and there’s a wealth of information in there to be analyzed.

    You say that whatever you decide to do, you do the best and that’s an extremely good work ethic to adopt so why not apply that here? Decide to find what you love to do and do the best you can like you did in all your other careers.

    Rule #1: Know you will find what you love to do. It doesn’t matter how long it will take, KNOW you WILL find it.

    The answer may not come immediately. Give it time. Try adding to your list of skills and interests after a couple of days have paseed to give it a fresh start. Also, try clearing your head for a week and tackling that question again in Step 3 (What would I love to do on a daily basis…). Usually, after you clear your head for some time, you have greater focus, clarity, and creativity.

    I hope that helps.

  7. Brian Kim Says:


    Thank you very much for sharing your story with us. I think it’s a story that a lot of people have and when they see what you’ve written, and how you’ve decided to go for it, I know it will inspire other people to do the same.

    You mention you’re in your 2nd year of college, so I assume you’re around 20 years of age. You’re pretty young and fortunate to be starting off at such an early age and judging from what you’ve written and the attitude you’ve adopted, I have no doubt you will succeed.

  8. Patricia Says:

    First, @Brian, I think this was a great article and I couldn’t agree more!

    @ Ingrid: I agree with Brian’s comments and I would add that maybe the problem isn’t so much that you can’t find that “one” right thing for you, maybe you just have too many passions and can’t settle for one. I am one of these people. I simply get extremely bored if I have to settle for one thing when all of those other burning passions are just screaming to be expressed. And that’s absolutely fine too, the good news is that it is possible to live a fulfilling life honoring all or most of your passions. I don’t know if that’s your case too, but if this sounds like you, you can start by checking out books like this one: http://www.amazon.com/Renaissance-Soul-Design-People-Passions/dp/0767920880/ref=sr_1_1/102-4091677-7292168?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1186128435&sr=1-1

    The very best luck to you! :-)

  9. Ramana Says:

    You captured my life in a great article.
    I am currently sitting here hating my (work) life, and now I have become motivated to change it.

  10. Brian Kim Says:


    Thanks for the kind words and thank you for providing Ingrid with your helpful insights!


    Thank you as well for the kind words. I really appreciate it. I’m glas this article has helped you motivate yourself to change your work life. You’ll find that if you go down that road, it will be WELL worth it!

  11. Jill Says:

    Dear Brian,

    This page popped up based on a Google search I did of “Best jobs for people who hate administrative jobs”. First off… I just want to tell you after reading your motivational words that I now know I am not crazy. I went through the whole highschool to college thing where I went away to a university because that’s what was expected and it’s not that I’m ungrateful for education I received that my mother worked hard to basically pay for… but college was not and is not me. So when I was up at school… what did I major in? Commercial and Community Recreation, Parks and Leisure Services (the department that gives you a t-shirt when you sign a major). A great degree to have for those on-demand fun jobs. Super! As a kid, I travelled around the country which inflamed my inner gypsy soul. I spent time working at Walt Disney World, with different hotels and fitness clubs as a lifeguard through college but now I am back in Florida interning for the MWR Department of the Navy. I’ve been in this amazing place for 3 weeks and have encountered nothing but negative people who complain day in and day out about how miserable and chaotic their lives are. I didn’t know this was THAT possible in a recreation setting… long story short it’s frustrating me as I am trying to keep a positive attitude. Although when I was promised to do events and trips with troops that basically made the most this area (kayaking, parasailing, etc.) and am sitting in an office and behind the front desk of a rec center… how can I not be miserable myself? As I talk to my mother, she says that is life… “People work for a living so they can have money and then have fun. You have to save money in order to do the things you want!” . I know that is bull because I am a creative thinker who always thinks outside of the box and thinks a lot kinder of this world than most people do. I feel things are a lot easier to acheive than most… but am always criticized and put down because most feel I am naive and unrealistic. If I want something… I make it happen… that is all! So after I graduate from college next May, I refuse to be one of those people who despises what they do… I will not be stuck behind a desk in front of a computer 40 hours a week and most importantly… I KNOW I WILL FIND SOMETHING I LOVE TO DO THAT PAYS ME TO DO IT NO MATTER HOW LONG IT TAKES! I want people to say to me “I BET YOU LOVE YOUR JOB… HOW WERE YOU SO LUCKY?!” Jimmy Buffett did it… so why can’t I? All I can say is sorry mom… I don’t think life has to be a grind. The only problem is I don’t know where to start this hunt for what I want to do. I know the job lies near the sea in the state of Florida somewhere. Have any ideas? Thanks for thinking like me. I’m sure you understand how hard it is for people like all the people who are motivated by your words to survive in society amongst bitter and cynical critics.

    Sincerely, Jill

  12. dolly Says:

    I really hate what I am doing. I know very well that it is not I want. But I can not shake off!
    I have to continue. What can I do? Maybe only when I make up my mind to leave the nightmare will end.

  13. Become un-manipulable by discovering yourself! | Memeverse Says:

    […] I couldn’t hope to explain this as well as Brian Kim can, especially in his article titled “Why So Many People Are In Jobs They Hate”. Because they don’t yet even know what would be a job they love, let alone have the boldness to pursue it! Then they ultimately start to blame the system, the society, because indeed it is the paths society has made for them that they followed and became so unhappy. Intriguing question comes to my mind: Is it any wonder theories of conspiracies are so popular? […]

  14. Brian Kim Says:


    Your comment must’ve slipped off the radar somehow so I apologize for this very late reply.

    My advice would be to first follow the steps listed in the this article: http://briankim.net/blog/2006/07/how-to-find-what-you-love-to-do/ and take it from there. It might give you some clues that you never had before. Let me know how it goes and if you have more questions, post them in the comments or contact me by clicking the contact link at the top of the site.


    This article might help with your situation:


  15. john Says:

    interesting…i think this definitely applies for the kids growing up middle income (and above) families

    a couple of other reasons people work jobs they hate:
    1. New people to the country without much education (refugee, from the village etc..) who need to provide for their family by whatever means necessary. (look at all those chinatown restaurant workers who a no speak a engrish…but must provide for their family)
    2. Kids growing up in poverty who knew well in advance that they must work for money as opposed to work for fun to provide for family. If your parents busted their butt off to provide for you, then you must do the same for them. Family first, self later.

  16. Brian Says:


    Thank you for this site! I’m 23 years old and recently graduated from college (Dec ‘06) and got my first job. I work for a very large company and I really dislike my current position. I dread getting up every the morning and know I’m not doing my best work because I have no passion for what I do. Im just not happy and I know I much more to give to the world!

    In the last five years, right after high school graduation, I always assumed the college process would guide me toward what I wanted to do with my life. I majored in business, which was a “safe” route. And unfortunatly, I did not find, and often supressed my passions. This site gives me inspiration to learn about myself and find what I’m passionate about! I’m making the commitment to find would I love to do.

    Thanks for the guidence Brian! I found this site at a perfect time. I will keep you posted with my progress.

    - Brian

  17. Ted Behr Says:


    Where do you get this statistic? “The more corporations begin to realize that more than 80% of their workforce absolutely HATE their jobs,…” It’s really astounding. I coach people who wnat to find work that they are passionate about, and I would like to use that statistic in my presentations to people. Thanks.


  18. Christine Says:

    I am 17 years old and am getting ready to enter my senior year of high school. So of course, the biggest thing on my mind right now and all me and my parents ever talk about is my future. My parents are both in the medical field and I have been hearing nothing but great things about that field for all my life, how secure it is, how you can always find a job in it, things like that. But the thing is, I’m really not interested in that field at all. Math and science are definitely not my strong points, english and reading are. I’m really interested in journalism, but i’m not dead set on anything right now. My dad keeps telling me that this is real life, and that I have to think about my future and how I will support myself, and that you just have to do it. I always relied on the thought that there’s something inside of me waiting to be discovered and that will lead me to my dream job, but now I’m not so sure. I really really want to find a job that I love because, well, I’ll be doing it for the rest of my life. Yet, I want my parents to be proud of me and continue to support me. My parents can’t seem to understand this whole concept of self-discovery and finding a job that I truly love. They want me to go into college sure of what i want, preferably something in the medical field. But I see college as a learning and growing experience where I have a chance to expose myself to new things away from my comfort zone. Now i’m not sure of anything, and i’m beginning to lose faith in myself. Reading your article helped, but I’m still so lost. Any advice? Thank you so much. Your blog seems great.


  19. Brian Kim Says:


    Thanks for providing such great additional reasons.


    I’m so glad you found the site and have been inspired by it. May it help you with all your endeavors!


    I believe that statistic was from a yahoo article I read some time ago. Unfortunately, I don’t remember the exact title.


    I’m sure your parents have your best interests in mind from their point of view. Also, being that you’re 17, you still have time to “absorb” new experiences and ideas and college is a great place to do that. I would recommend talking it over with your parents and set some sort of timeline that’s agreeable to both. For instance, you first year of college could be freedom to explore but after that, it’s time for you to buckle down and choose a major.

    Just don’t procrastinate. Do all you can to find the work that’s right for you.

  20. Mehmet Says:


    I am certainly glad I found this web page. I am a freshman in university and I’m supposed to write an essay about why people hate their jobs. Your article inspired me.



  21. Brian Kim Says:


    No problem. You’re very welcome.

    I’m glad you found the page and I hope the essay goes well!


  22. Dejan Says:

    I love this:

    “Up to a certain point, you can blame “the capitalist system” in general for your troubles.”

    That’s exactly what I do.

    If 80% of the people hate their current jobs (I believe that’s pretty accurate percentage), then isn’t it easier to change “the system” than 80% of the people??? The problem I see is that the ones that are in charge of changing it are actually satisfied with it as it is. So until the next big revolution - we, the 80%, are stuck with it (“the capitalist system” if someone missed it).

  23. jonathan beaton Says:

    Great article dude, I share many of your views.

  24. Tootmania Says:

    Wow, this is very inspiring! Especially for me since I just not too long ago finished High School, and do not wish to go down the college route that all of my peers have done. I want to become a greeting card illustrator!! I wanna do it and do it I shall!! Thanks again Mr. Kim for the awesome insight and inspirational words!…

  25. Brian Kim Says:


    You bring up an interesting point.


    You’re very welcome!


    You’re very welcome as well! I wish you nothing but success in your endeavor!

  26. Reader Success Story: If You Met Her 10 Years Ago, You Would’ve Thought She Was On a Sad and Painful Path of Despair » The Definitive Self Improvement Blog - BrianKim.net Says:

    […] Why So Many People Are In Jobs They Hate […]

  27. Ryan Larson Says:

    I found your article interesting. The exact thing happened to me. My mom was pushed by other relatives to ‘push me into going to college, or else i’d be a loser.’ Since the decision wasn’t come about by myself I went but didn’t do my best in college. Now I”m stuck was a massive loan debt and I’m no closer to discovering my passions. I did the liberal arts useless degree thing and I’m now through working trying to build up skills. now I feel like my only choice is to pick something at the masters level and get furhter into debt to get a ‘useful’ degree. But after reading your article I realize that now I am going to wait until my decision is coming from what I truly like and what fits me.


  28. Brian Kim Says:

    You’re very welcome Ryan and you made a wise choice indeed.

  29. Thomas Says:

    Thanks, for the article. I went through three totally different careers before I found one I loved. I have a college degree and the career I ended up in does not even require one. I have worked at this job for over twelve years and loved every minute of it. However, thanks to society’s bureaucracy (adding more and more hoops to jump through), this job I once loved is turning to one I dread. I really agree with your article, just remember if you do find a job you love it may change on you down the road. So always be ready to keep looking. Life is to short to be miserable.

  30. Brian Kim Says:

    Thanks for chiming in with your experience Thomas!

    I think we should all be vigilant and not fall into the trap of becoming complacent.

  31. tijuana Says:

    Tnx, Brian, you’ve changed my boring morning in the office, now I have to post a comment and spend 10min away from my tasks…

    It’s great that big shinny corporate America has all those books, courses and other enlightening material, even universities encourage writing essays on the topic, wow!!! You’re just exploiting the misery the system created selling all your products in the same way the system sell all the products to all the miserable consumers!! And it is too much to give 30dollars for a book that is not answering the question how am I suppose to work 40h for somebody else under their terms and love it all along!!! No way! Even if I choose to do something I love, the employer will make sure I don’t lose the sensation of the entrapment! Let alone the possibility to actually find a vacancy for a position you desire…

    So, it’s just that I need to want and decide and it’s all up to me??? And if I fail again it’s simply because I didn’t even want it so much in the first place?? Funny resembling to the Christian sin phenomenon, you can NEVER WIN!!!

    It’s nothing new that people are under pressure of their surroundings when making choices in their lives, first of all stop buying all the things you don’t need, just because you are supposed to have exactly those plates when your friends come to the dinner, or you supposed to have an iPhone… Spend less, need less, work less, and enjoy your free time doing what is the first thing on YOUR list..

    I wish you all nice day in the office!

  32. Dexy Says:

    I’ve seen tons of articles like this. They all come down to one big point:

    “But the hardest pill to swallow is that it’s up to YOU to find the job you love. “
    “And that it was always up to you to do it.”

    Up to me? You mean up to us, the 80% of people? The system is designed in such way that nothing is up to this majority. The minority on top rules and decides what the majority must do. It’s the basic foundation of slavery and the core of capitalist system as well. The major difference is that capitalism has a strong propaganda (“it’s not the system that’s wrong, it’s just YOU”) in order to prevent and suffocate big rebellions.

    In your article you’ve dealt mostly with college people and problems with educational system, but this hardly makes any difference. A lot of people really hate their jobs, college degree or not; it’s simply because there’s nothing they like to do that can be paid. And why is that? I’ll provide the real answer shortly, but first think about this:

    If some alien race were to come and observe Earth they would be amazed. Human species absolutely rule the Earth. No animal can come close to endanger human race. Yet, most of those silly humans still spend most of their lives doing something they don’t like, moreover hate! But…why??? I’ll tell you why.

    Imagine a world where everyone either does the work he likes or simply doesn’t work. Simple mathematical representation of this is: for each job, there’s equal or bigger number of people that like it as there is a demand for the job. Is this ever possible? For instance, a janitor job – we can assume that the number of people that like it is close to 0; but the demand for this job is way bigger than that.

    In slavery, the solution to the above problem is to whip and force the slaves into jobs they don’t like. In capitalism this wrong proportion of happy work force and demand for work remains, just the whipping was replaced with high social pressure. Even if you don’t starve, you won’t be able to fit in any society if you don’t work. And work what? There’s 80% chance you’ll be doing something you don’t like.

    But the problem is NOT in you. If you are the 80% majority, the problem cannot possibly be in you. It’s in the system. And not just the educational system, it’s much wider than that. Colleges are just one drop in the ocean. The whole system needs to rebalance the artificially created demand for work and make it closer to the actual number of people that like that work.

  33. Brian Kim Says:

    Hi tijuana,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    Hi Dexy,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts as well.

    I’ll just respond with two points:

    1. People see what they believe.
    2. If you feel that strongly, perhaps the work you would like to do lies in helping change the system?

  34. Dexy Says:

    Hi Brian,

    Thanks for replying to my comment, even if it was a bit harsh.

    However, you’re still not seeing (or you’re just refusing to admit) the big picture. Again you’re focusing on me, single person, trying to find the solution to one small part of the problem. But what about that 80% of population? Do you honestly believe that all of them could change individually, to live and work happily, with this system in place? That all we need to do is shuffle people and work positions a bit, until everyone finds their match?

    Do a simple thought experiment. Pick a job position (for instance, city bus driver). Then think of how many people would just love to do that, be really passionate about it. Then think of how many people you see every day doing it. The proportion is way out of normal range. Then try to think of another job and another job and another job. You’ll get the same results.

    It’s like the game of musical chairs. There’s always someone left out, by the rule of thumb. And yet, you’re trying to teach everyone individually how to be quicker to get to a chair. Some will succeed some not, but in the end the global result is always failure, for there are only 2 chairs per 10 persons!

    And in reply to your second point:
    No, this is not what I’d like to do. I know what I’d like to do, I’ve known it for years. And hopefully I’ll have enough money (earned in the job I hate) in a few months to really do it.

  35. Brian Kim Says:

    Hi Dexy,

    Human beings have free will and the power to choose. When you blame something outside yourself, you give it power and limit your own at the same time.

    Nobody is forcing a person to take a certain job. Sure, circumstances may dictate that sometimes a person has to get a job they normally wouldn’t like, but there’s always a way out over time.

    Now, will EVERYONE see it that way and pursue it?

    The answer is no.

    Some people for various reasons, don’t do it. It might be they’re too scared, they don’t want it bad enough, they don’t believe in themselves, they can’t think creatively, etc.

    Those are the people who will forever be doomed by the mental prison they create for themselves.

  36. Dexy Says:

    Hi Brian,

    Think about it this way:

    “Some people for various reasons, don’t do it.”

    But even the ones that do it are in effect pushing out the others!

    There are simply not enough ‘lovable’ jobs in this system for all the people. However, there are too many jobs that most of the people hate. Can you deny that?

  37. Brian Kim Says:

    Hi Dexy,

    If you think in terms that there’s a fixed number of jobs, that’s a very limiting belief.

    People can CREATE jobs/businesses they like.

    It’s happening all the time.

    If you can’t find a job you like, or maybe you do but can’t get one because it’s too crowded, CREATE.

    CREATE a way to improve upon that job, a new twist that adds value, etc.

    Or just CREATE your own business doing what you love.

    If you keep on focusing on the system, about the jobs out there that other people hate, that’s the wrong focus to have. Other people will have their own journey. Focus on yours.

  38. Dexy Says:

    Hi Brian,

    I don’t think there’s precisely fixed number of jobs out there. But creating new openings for one job will definitely devaluate that job. This is the basic concept of supply and demand. Of course, if you add one new to a thousand existing ones, the devaluation will not be noticeable, but if you add a thousand to one thousand, you’ll definitely see the difference.

    The only way you can avoid this devaluation is to create bigger demand for those jobs (thus reduce the demand for other, ‘dreaded’ jobs), i.e. change the system. And we can’t do that individually, each person for himself.

    And finally, I am focusing on my journey in my life. My comments here are no different than yours when it comes to that. I’m simply trying to demystify some society problems to the readers, just like you do (although with different arguments).

  39. Brian Kim Says:

    Hi Dexy,

    I appreciate that you’re trying to demystify the problems of society.

    Ultimately, in the end, it’s far more empowering to the individual to keep his power and focus it on himself, rather than giving it away in terms of blaming the system.

    In helping ourselves first, we find we can help others, and in turn, maybe help the system itself.

  40. Dexy Says:

    Hi Brian,

    I got nothing more to add, without repeating myself.

    Thanks for publishing and replying to my comments; hopefully the readers will form their own opinions on the subject more easily now, since they’re presented with different arguments.

  41. Reader Success Story: He Had Been Dreading to Report to Work For the Past 25 Years and Then Made the Ultimate Decision » The Definitive Self Improvement Blog - BrianKim.net Says:

    […] Why So Many People Are In Jobs They Hate […]

  42. Taulant B Says:


  43. Brian Kim Says:

    Great choice and song!

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