Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Where are you and where are you going?
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Family father
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by Family father » Thu Feb 08, 2018 1:09 pm

If you let me, I'd like to share one thought that could be useful:

I understand your deception about how occidental society is built / works (I even share most of it).

Your unfitting feeling seems to assume you must fit into a rigid and small frame instead of finding your place in a very large and not so rigid frame...

In your situation, maybe going abroad, and spend some time in very different cultures (africa, india...), may help you get a broader perspective, and help you find your way...

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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by jacob » Thu Feb 08, 2018 1:12 pm


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fuyu
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by fuyu » Thu Feb 08, 2018 1:55 pm

Do your parents really like their jobs? Why did you originally have such an optimistic view of work?

Even before I started working full-time, from how my parents and friends' parents felt about their work, I thought a job was just being an obedient minion while selling time and energy for money and I can stop when I'm 65.

The Old Man
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by The Old Man » Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:20 pm

I agree that international travel broadens your perspective and may be warranted here. Joining the Peace Corps for a stint would be a productive and worthwhile means to that end. The time in also counts towards a government pension. I also think you should give consideration to a career in diplomacy - Foreign Service Officer in the US Department of State. A tour in the Peace Corps with your prestigious education and Hispanic background would serve you well in the FSO application.

James_0011
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by James_0011 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:54 pm

IMO the peace corps is a classic example of virtue signaling: https://bir.brandeis.edu/bitstream/hand ... sequence=1

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:19 pm

The Old Man wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:20 pm
I agree that international travel broadens your perspective and may be warranted here. Joining the Peace Corps for a stint would be a productive and worthwhile means to that end. The time in also counts towards a government pension. I also think you should give consideration to a career in diplomacy - Foreign Service Officer in the US Department of State. A tour in the Peace Corps with your prestigious education and Hispanic background would serve you well in the FSO application.

How does one go about applying for Foreign Service Officer? I don't even know how to apply through the Peace Corps, let alone be a Foreign Service Officer. Heh...

Yes yes, virtue signaling. That's all well and good, but I need something to do that I can actually do. If it makes you feel any better, I don't use social media besides LinkedIn out of necessity.

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TheWanderingScholar
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TheWanderingScholar » Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:49 pm

Well I can show you where to begin:

https://careers.state.gov/work/foreign-service/officer/

This is a good starting point page wise.

EdithKeeler
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by EdithKeeler » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:08 pm

Peace corps is great training for living cheap... my friend’s kid spent 2 years in Sierra Leone teaching English and health stuff in a pretty remote village. She was the only Peace Corps person there and lived just like the villagers. It was rough, aspects were great and she had wonderful and horrible moments, including a health scare for herself. She ended up getting a full scholarship to grad school largely on her PC experience (and impeccable grades in college), and got a good job with the government.

George the original one
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by George the original one » Thu Feb 08, 2018 7:55 pm

Health scares are the biggest negatives for Peace Corps. The two people I know who did PC both had scares. One now has an annoying minor condition for life.

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:20 pm

IMO the peace corps is a classic example of virtue signaling: https://bir.brandeis.edu/bitstream/hand ... sequence=1
I sure am getting tired of some bystander pointing out "virtue signaling!" every time a person wants to do anything that isn't completely to benefit themselves. It's a great talking point, whatever right-wing propagandist came up with the idea of using it to shut down people who care about other people or the environment or anything that isn't self-centered ruthless capitalism should get a bonus on their next Koch brothers paycheck. It's genius. Yeah, some SJWs are full of it and I'm just as tired of them as anyone, but there are also people who just want to clean up the litter in the park next door or buy a homeless dude a meal or help people in a poor country learn to read and aren't necessarily doing it to impress anyone.
Health scares are the biggest negatives for Peace Corps.
I too know someone who got permanently messed up from an illness in the peace corps, though it happened something like 40 years ago.

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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by James_0011 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:12 pm

That paper I linked to was written by a left winger. It’s about how the whole thing is really just part of the American imperialist agenda.

Maybe virtue signaling was the wrong word. It’s more like “misguided attempt at altruism”
Last edited by James_0011 on Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:12 pm

Yes, well, I've come up with an action plan whenever securing access to a new area:

1. Identify the right area: this is key, good research into fitting places to live pays in spades
2. Identify the right housing unit: pick a place to live that is clean, safe, and close to work and food
3. Share the housing unit: apartment-mates and room shares are essential to reduce financial stress and increase community
4. Identify income streams: secure fitting work that is within manual distance
5. Secure proper transport: kick scooter, bicycle, electric conversion, rented cars, buses, subways, and trains
6. Identify community groups to join: important for increasing community and support

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:14 pm

James_0011 wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:12 pm
That paper I linked to was written by a left winger. It’s about how the whole thing is really just part of the American imperialist agenda.
Yes, James, the Peace Corps is part of the Capitalist-Imperial agenda. It co-opts us from changing an inherently inequitable and unjust system by relieving some of its symptoms. Same with many non-profits. In fact, many non-profits spend more time commercializing themselves and fund raising than they do helping folks.

BUT - THF needs a job that he likes, and relieving some symptoms doesn't sound so bad. Besides, all of us here are filthy capitalists making the complacent work for us while the planet decides to kill us all off. Permanent illness on the other hand.

James_0011
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by James_0011 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:32 pm

The paper honestly did change my feelings about the peace corps.

I agree with everything you wrote about finding a place to live btw.

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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by EdithKeeler » Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:04 am

Do your parents really like their jobs? Why did you originally have such an optimistic view of work?

Even before I started working full-time, from how my parents and friends' parents felt about their work, I thought a job was just being an obedient minion while selling time and energy for money and I can stop when I'm 65.
This.

I think this idea that you have to LOVE your job, that you should have PASSION for your job is, well, baloney. I’ve come to this conclusion after 30 years of work.

It’s GREAT if your interests and passions coincide with work that you can get paid a good wage to do. I just don’t think that it really happens for that many people, truly. I also think that for a decent sized subset of people that say their job meets their interests and passions—well, a lot of them just haven’t done or seen much to compare it to.

I know a woman that just loves her job—she answers the phone, types a few letters, and has no intention of retiring until they carry her out in a body bag. That’s great.... but she literally has never been further away than 100 miles from her house, the same house she lived in as a child, she reads an occasional romance book and goes to church 4x a week. I’m not denigrating her at all—she’s very sweet and kind—but I’m just saying that I suspect she’d be less satisfied about her current work if her life experiences had been different. “You can’t keep ‘em down on the farm once they’ve been to gay Paree.”

No one should have to work in a job that sucks out their soul. You spend too much time there for that. But you don’t have to love it and be passionate about it, either, to earn a good paycheck and find opportunities for growth and self-actualization and prep for ERE. They key is, I think, being realistic about work. And sometimes you have to make a compromise or two. “I like most aspects of this job, benefits are good, it offers opportunities for personal growth. However it requires a car and commute, but realistically that’s only going to set my plans back by 2 years.” Or however that equation looks like and works out for you personally.

Or in the words of the immortal Rolling Stones: “you can’t always get what you want... but if you try, sometimes you get what you need.”

Job is a paycheck to finance everything else, for most of us.

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:49 pm

@Edith, I agree that a job is a paycheck to finance everything else, including being FI. But yes, there is a stark difference between a job that sucks out your soul (my previous two positions) and something that is tolerable. My goal here is just tolerance. I don't have to LOVE what I do every day every minute. I just have to like it and get paid enough to be on an upward trend financially. Ideally in a central location where I can commute via bike or public transit.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by distracted_at_work » Fri Feb 09, 2018 6:33 pm

You remind me of myself right out of University. The difference being I stuck with it and leveraged that into getting a job I liked. I think you need to lower your standards and/or work harder. Life isn't liberal arts school. Reading this journal is very frustrating for me.

To add some substance.. we all come out of school at the top of the totem pole, that should be nothing new. Then, all of a sudden, you are at the bottom. Then you need to work to climb it again. Why is that surprising? Did it not happen between junior high and high school? High school to University? Between years in University when your classes became more difficult? I'm stunned that you were able to achieve a 60K net worth but can't work longer than a month at a job. How? I actually need to call bullshit. I don't believe it.

If you did manage it I imagine that taking food from the needy probably helps...

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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Fri Feb 09, 2018 7:17 pm

Wow! I'm so glad it worked out for you. That's awesome! You must be like, 10x more determined than I. Kudos to finding a job you like, it's not like I'm scouring boards and calling people every day. Yes, I'll try to lower my standards to lower than "I just need something I can tolerate that pays me more than $145 per week." I'm really quite sorry that reading my entries makes you feel bad. My condolences. Oh, and I'm glad you don't believe what I write. That's nice. Bonus points on suggesting I stole it from the needy.~

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distracted_at_work
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by distracted_at_work » Fri Feb 09, 2018 7:31 pm

Big meh here. Write a private journal if you don't want legitimate criticism. I've been here a year and I know your type. Millennial (I am one) that wants everything for free.

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Fri Feb 09, 2018 7:37 pm

Please refrain from typing me. I grew up in an immigrant family and I learned to work hard for everything I have. Free college? I needed a perfect GPA and resume since middle school. 60K? I needed to work 60 hour weeks in the summers and 20 during school, not to mention learning how to live frugally. Medically necessary jaw surgery? I needed to scour insurances, orthodontists, and surgeons to find the right fit. Do not come to my journal if you are spewing vitriol. Just because something worked for you, does not mean it will work for me. I wish I could just find a job I can tolerate and do that. I try every day. Unfortunately, I find myself to be the 1 in 100 that has a personality that does not fit with most work. My goal is to find a workaround, not to feel defeated by being told I want life to be free and that I don't work hard enough.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by distracted_at_work » Fri Feb 09, 2018 8:12 pm

If this is vitriol to you then I apologize. I sure as shit had a harder time to succeed than you did. Good luck amigo.

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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by EdithKeeler » Fri Feb 09, 2018 9:03 pm

I am curious about this:
60K? I needed to work 60 hour weeks in the summers and 20 during school,
What was your job that earned you that amount of money? I'm curious just because, well, that's a lot of money earned and saved from a high school/college job. (I was in high school and college, I worked at McDonald's, a bakery, campus catering, 2 summers and a lot of hours at an amusement park, and waited tables). I didn't come close to making that kind of money.

So I'm wondering, to put in those kinds of hours, what did you do and did you like it? Is it something you can go back to now, do in a different form (ie, boss the crew or whatever) to earn money until you get some stuff figured out?

You know, I'm a liberal arts grad from a top school, a lower middle class kid rubbing shoulders with a lot of rich kids, and I felt similarly at sea when I graduated college. I can relate to the whole "OK, everyone has told me to go to school and graduate, but they didn't tell me what I'm supposed to do after that" thing. I was an English major and had no clue what I would do next. It's pretty common, and it's also pretty common to hate your first few jobs (yeah, you engineers can't relate to this so much I think!!). You have a lot of freedom in college, and now you're at a desk from 8-5 and getting bossed around. You were at the top of the heap last week, and they give you your diploma and now you sort of feel like you're in kindergarten again. I also get that a lot of your peers immediately went on to jobs that seem FABULOUS that they just LOVE and that are PERFECT. That was the case when I graduated, and I'm sure it's a million times worse in the era of social media (I know this because those kids' parents post on Facebook!!). Just be reassured that ONE: they do not all have fabulous jobs that they love, and many will change jobs soon and/or decide to go to grad school because they don't like their jobs and don't know what to do for a living either and TWO, the ones that do have fabulous jobs and stay in those jobs probably do so because of some sort of family influence (yes, I know I'm broadly generalizing.... but I also found this to be true). I went to college with a few "names" in my state, and it was a foregone conclusion that the guy whose family owned a line of grocery stores would be some sort of VP within a year, and that the guy whose family's name was on the bank in town ended up as Senior VP at the bank. We weren't disappointed.

So.... be kind to yourself. Just breathe. Your last posts have just felt so FRANTIC and defensive and angry. I think I suggested in another post someplace to just get a job, any job and just do it for a while. That's still my advice. My brother has worked a ton of those "dirty jobs" that guy on TV does. He worked on an assembly line thing and thought he hated it, but after being robbed at gunpoint twice at a convenience store he realized that panting oven handles or whatever he was doing wasn't so bad. Some things are relative. Right now unemployment is at an all time low and employers are HURTING for people. (My brother's factory can't keep close to enough people). I'm not kidding when I say that the construction companies I work with are grabbing anyone they can get with clean pee and a good driving record, and people are getting promoted quickly. (Have you ever considered being a construction manager? I believe you are fluent in Spanish--super valuable--and it takes some serious smarts which you clearly have--and it pays really, really well, plus it gives you the flexibility of new projects, dealing with people, etc. Anyway, a thought.).

But seriously.... be kind to yourself, try to slow the frantic, and just know that what you're feeling is actually pretty common. It will settle down after a while.

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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by bryan » Fri Feb 09, 2018 9:33 pm

I think we can all agree @THF has a very unique (to ERE forums, at least) personality and way of communicating. Certainly it causes friction and frustration with some of us, on occasion. However, I'm sure all of us want to see him succeed in life. Personally I enjoy a lot of his posts (and ignore the rest!! :P ) I think I'm more disappointed in some folks' reactions to @THF, than anything (it seems like a dark side to INTJs)?

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:10 pm

@Edith & bryan, thanks : )

I worked for the student activities office listening to students and organizing events for them. I liked that. I also managed the campus center and got to interact with interesting people all day. I worked a variety of full-time, paid internships too. I certainly made a lot during these gigs in the summer and school year, but a large share also came from me getting a stipend every semester and saving most of it. In retrospect, I wish I had done a room share in college so I'd now have a high enough net worth to not need to figure out work. But in any case, I am thankful that was I was able to receive such stipends. I'll try to be kinder to myself, but it is not easy. I was trained to be perfect at Amherst College, and I feel far from it here. If I appear frantic, that is because I am to a degree. I think this will settle down should I find any role I like, and I feel like I can still save some cash too. Getting a fitting job just seems so difficult with only a bachelor's. I can see why literally 90% of Amherst College graduates get a graduate degree within 5 years.

@bryan, I'm dating an INTJ at the moment. As a type, you all tend to get frustrated if someone disagrees with your logic. Whereas I tend to get frustrated if someone disagrees with my values or attacks them head-on. Usually, I can just ignore negative comments, but my willpower is lower when unemployed and spending down resources while concurrently figuring out a nebulous career path in a place I don't want to be in because of important medical reasons. This naturally means I will lash out if provoked without kindness nor tact~ (a.k.a pure logic like many of you all have)

----------------

The short of it is that the world as it is is not built with me in mind. Quite the opposite - It is predominantly built for Thinkers, Extroverts, and Sensing people. Most of the high paying roles or simply the largest quantity of roles favor these traits. I represent <1% of the population, and so the strategies that work for most, do not work for me. Part of me wishes I was different so that I could have an easier time, but that is not reality. I think the reality is accepting who I am and finding something that works for me. For example, maybe the Peace Corps could be good, or maybe the Diplomat role would be good. They are helpful options to think about. From my conversations with the few people who are most like me, it does seem that the lion's share of the fitting roles will require a Master's. Perhaps things will be better after that life stage is complete.

---------------

I've identified that to be consistently happy, I need:

1. To have community and close people to talk to (currently pretty good)
2. To have enough money coming in as going out (currently negative here)
3. Food, shelter, sunlight, exercise, the outdoors (neutral, lack of sunlight and warmth)
4. To be helping people in some capacity (wholly negative)

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Viktor K
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by Viktor K » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:41 pm

Peace Corps is pretty easy to sign up for. State Department (FSO) is much more difficult and competitive. As well, last time I checked FSO recruitment went down quite a bit with the latest administration and their own internal growth/development plans.

FSO requires a written test (easy, held 2-3x per year at local testing centers around the world), personal narratives (more ambiguous, where I personally procrastinated and ultimately was rejected), in person, day-long (or 2?) interview in DC, and then if you pass that you're on the short list for the next opening. The process will take 3-4 months from start to finish, and you wait to be accepted to the next part after each one.

The job involves picking a "track" and then training for a region, they ship you and everything you own to your post, then change said post/region every 2-3 years.

Criticisms include more paper pushing at your post than expected. Benefits include lots of travel, relatively easy job, and good pay (hardship bonuses, COL bonuses, and danger pay all multiply your baseline earnings).

If you do Peace Corps, you get a bonus on your FSO application. Foreign language skills also add a bonus, some languages more than others (Mandarin, Arabic, etc).

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