My least favorite PF “rule” is that one can’t become rich by working for someone else. It’s almost as though bloggers are money-obsessed hippies, criticizing anyone who works for The Man, calling them worker bees, drones, etc. “Why,” they ask, “would you ever want to work for someone else when clearly all skills and professions are transferable to owning your own business? I mean, my skills are, and I can’t imagine that anyone else might have different abilities or desires.”
I do not have an entrepreneurial bone in my body.
I don’t like risk. I dislike dealing with people every day. I’d be a terrible salesperson, and I know I’d be miserable if all I had to do all day was drum up business. I dislike feeling beholden to other people, even if those people genuinely needed whatever service I could provide.
My skills and interests aren’t very useful for business owning. I love engineering, and my industry is a niche area where the costs are prohibitive to all but the largest corporate and government entities. My specialty in this industry is basically useless in the outside world, unless I wanted to be a professor (not a teacher… it would have to be at the college level). It’s not something you can start doing outside work as a hobby.
Plus, I love my job. I love my coworkers. I like knowing what my paycheck will be every 2 weeks, and I like not having to worry about my own retirement savings, healthcare, or 50% of my social security taxes. I like that I can go on to get another degree without worrying about how I going to get the money for it. I like my paycheck, even, although I probably wouldn’t complain if there’s was more of it.
Of course, I’m an outlier too. I make a good salary considering my age & experience, and my job will most likely not disappear for a long time (I’d say I’m good out for like 20 years). And I love structure (hence the math & science focus). Other people are in fields that don’t pay as much, or they don’t have any interest in what they’re doing. Some people hate structured workdays.
There is always more than one path to financial success. Some people say spend less, some people say earn more. Some people want to retire as early as possible. Some people want to love their work enough that they never want to retire.
So PF bloggers, stop saying that we’ll never be financially sound or happy working a regular 9-5 job. Lots of us will.