Few days ago, I caught up with a friend I know for a very long time. He’s about ten years younger than me, a high school drop-out working in a supermarket as a checkout operator.
He’s been doing this for a while, doesn’t earn much and of course, feeling stuck. That’s what he told me at the coffee catch up.
I certainly understand how miserable it can be. In my first two years of my career, I was working as an office clerk earning close to minimum wage, couldn’t see myself getting promoted and getting a huge pay rise. Needless to say, I was unhappy. In fact, I was feeling hopeless.
Now don’t get me wrong, I have lots of respect to those who are working the minimum wage job because they worked hard for it. But let’s be honest, it’s not a position we want to be in for long. You don’t want to live below your means for the rest of your life, do you? And not to mention you’ll have a hard time when there’s a financial emergency.
If you happened to be feeling stuck at low pay jobs, keep reading. Because I’m going to share one method that’s easy to follow but will dramatically increase the odds of changing your life for good.
What will happen when you work for minimum wage for too long?
I don’t know your situation, but my guess is, the main reason you work on a minimum wage job is you don’t have a choice.
Maybe you don’t have any qualifications or work experience.
Maybe the job market is bad and you can only take on a low pay job for the time being.
Or maybe, you just can’t find a better pay job that suits you.
Sure, earning minimum wage sucks, but it’s more than just struggling to pay the bills. Speaking from my experience, if you work for minimum wage for a long time, then two things could happen, and they will harm you in the long run.
Develop a fixed mindset
Spoiler alert: you are more likely to develop a fixed mindset. I’ve mentioned fixed mindset is a toxic mentality that you should get rid of, if you are unsure what that is, check out this article.
It’s fairly easy to get a minimum wage job because of the low barrier of entry. That’s how I started, back then no one was willing to hire me as I didn’t have any experience. So I worked there for a while, got used to the job and thought it’s ok to stay for a bit.
Here’s a hard fact: your salary reflects the value you can provide, or how big of a problem you can solve. If you are working for a minimum paid job for a long time, then it somehow suggests you are not significant and replaceable, and that can really hurt your self-esteem. The longer you stay, the bigger the impact it will be, and that’s how I developed my fixed mindset.
When I saw a new job listing I was interested in, I’ll instantly think myself not worthy of the role. I won’t be able to learn the skills required for that position.
Obviously that’s not true because all skills can be learned, but my self-limit belief stopped me from taking action.
2. Hanging out with others that settle with a mediocre life
Ever heard of a saying, you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with?
What I’m going to say might be politically incorrect here. Majority of the people who work in minimum paid jobs are struggling and feeling miserable, probably don’t bother developing good habits and getting rid of bad ones. Maybe even toxic because they tend to complain.
If you stay in the role long enough, then you’ll hang out with these people often, and you will become a part of them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying all of them are bad people, in fact, my colleagues in my first job were nice and helpful.
The thing is, even they are good souls, they are definitely less likely to inspire you because they are too busy making a living, and not getting inspiration, means no growth.
So what should you do then?
So you see, when you are stuck in that position for long, you can develop a fixed mindset and make it difficult to create a strong network.
Surely it’ll require some work to be done, but there is one move you can implement right away that helps you mitigate the two problems I’ve mentioned. It doesn’t require much effort at all and you really have no excuse of not doing it.
That is, start seeing more personal development content on social media. For instance, start following influencers like Tony Robbins or Brendon Burchard on Instagram. Join Self-help Facebook Groups to interact with others.
I think no one can deny the fact that many low wage workers would spend a fair amount of their time mindlessly scrolling on social media. If so, then might as well start feeding yourself with great content that could potentially motivate you or inspire you, and participate in a quality conversation.
This is not going to be enough, but still a great starting point. Remember everything starts with your mindset, and only if you get rid of your self-limit belief, you will start taking different action and that’s how you will change your life for good.
Once you consume more of those content, you’ll find out more about the law of attractions. You’ll figure out how to become resourceful when it comes to upskilling. You’ll expand your network. And you’ll find yourself a different person a few months later.
Sometimes life might throw us a curveball and we are forced to take on a minimum paid job, but it’s not a state we want to stay for long. Apart from not earning much, that could hurt our self-esteem, and also not getting good influences from your peers. It just makes you not happy in general.
The quickest fix you can do is, start feeding yourself quality content on Social Media, because they’ll change your thought bit by bit, and being able to interact with other like-minded people will inspire you as you go.
It’s the simplest thing you can do that could let you feel better and think better. Definitely give it a go if you are feeling stuck. There’s nothing to lose anyway.
Comment below how you find out about my approach, and if that really helps that would mean a lot to me.