Students: we’ve got it easy

December 17, 2011 § 4 Comments

For the past three days (and the next six) I’ve been back working for the family I used to nanny for. And it’s got me thinking. Of how much harder work and the ‘real world’ is than studying. 

Now, I know that many of my fellow students out there would possibly (probably?) disagree with this statement – and once the holidays are over I’m likely to disagree too – but at the current point in time, I believe it’s true.

Academic Bubble 

As students we tend to complain. A lot. About our workload, the unfairness of our teachers, our marks….

And, in all fairness, those complaints are often justified. Especially at Masters level when you are expected to take responsibility for your own study. It’s a lot of pressure.

But, there are a lot of things about studying that really make it an easier option than going out and working in the ‘real world’.

We get to sleep a heck of a lot more than those with a 9-5 job. And if you aren’t sleeping, chances are it’s due to pulling an all-nighter finishing up that assignment that you kept putting off time and time again. Students, are, if nothing else, great at procrastination.

We tend to have a lot more time to socialise – I’m not saying we’re out partying every night (though I’m sure there are many who are!), but we certainly have more freedom to do the things that we want. Or, we make the time. And regret it later 😉

And while we rant and rave, I think that honesty, when studying we are in some sort of academic bubble – that keeps us from the ‘real world’.

And when we finally break free of that bubble, all we want to do is get back into it. Because the real world is so much harder.

The ‘real world’ 

I will admit, straight up, here are things that I love about working. My boss, for one. She was wonderful to work with for nearly two years.

And, to blow my own trumpet, I was good at my job. You know you must be when your boss says: ‘why can you only stay a week. Why can’t you stay for two years?’

But in all honesty, the two years I have been working full-time (12 hours a day, five days a week, 47 weeks a year) were possibly the hardest two years of my life.

Perhaps it was the job I was in – being a nanny is not easy. The number of daily battles you have are uncountable. Over getting dressed. Over eating. Over bath. Over bed.

Working full-time is exhausting: I’ve been back in the saddle for three days. By day two I was ready for bed by 8PM.

The perks of work….

Don’t get me wrong, there are moments in my job which melt away all the crapiness- when a kids gives you a hug, for no reason (coz kids do that); when they tell you ‘I love you’. Those are worthwhile moments.

And of course, there is one other, wonderful thing about working full-time. The money! I can’t deny that earning money was great. It enabled me to do so many things that I wouldn’t otherwise have done – plays and shows and travel. Oh, the travel.

And now, as a poor student (ah, another thing we love to complain about!) I miss my days of working and earning…. But boy do I not miss those early mornings!

So, what do you think? Which is harder – studying or working?

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§ 4 Responses to Students: we’ve got it easy

  • maxmichel says:

    I agree but I also think it depends on what kind of work you have. The thing about studying is that you never really finish your day, there are always assignments you can do more work on. Usually, when you are working, you don’t have that homework hanging over you.

    Good post!

  • Having done both full time work and study I found study to be hard work at the time but often because I was great at procrastinating and leaving assignments until the last minute. Work is constant for me, there aren’t any mid-semester breaks and sometimes I can’t help but take my work problems home to dwell over until I’m back in the office.

    • I think that once I get back into the second semester I will feel the same way – that study is harder. But at the moment, while I am working, this definitely feels more difficult! I can relate to the not having any mid-semester breaks and taking work home with you (as a live-in nanny, work and home were the same place – so not always easy to switch off after finishing up).

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