Why my Purposeless Job is the New American Dream

A lot of people ask me if I like my job and my answer is always, “Absolutely! I love being a flight attendant!”

This is a lie…kind of.

Over the years I have flown with several people who say that becoming a flight attendant was always a dream of theirs, and they worked so hard to get here, but not me. Becoming a flight attendant wasn’t even something that I thought about doing before I applied. At the time I was kind of in a rut and I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life, so I saw this opportunity and decided why not?! I love traveling and it seems like a fun job! Well I can tell you something now that I didn’t know then; this is not a fun job.

Do you think I like serving cokes and pretzels to entitled jerks everyday? Do you think I enjoy being yelled at endlessly for things that I have no control over? Do you think I like going to work day to day for a job that is meaningless? Absolutely effing not. Forget all that BS about how flight attendants are there to get you to where you need to go; about how we sacrifice being at home with our families to fly you to yours. This job is not about us being superheroes and saving the day (even though we totally can when emergencies happen) because thats not what happens on a day to day basis. On a day to day basis, our job doesn’t give us fulfillment, so why do we do it?!

Its true that I was drinking the kool-aid when I started this job and I thought it was the greatest gig in the world! I mean come on, I get to travel the world and get paid for it?! What could be better?! Well, you know what could be better? Saving lives, molding minds, building things…anything that actually has a purpose and provides something for the world! However, I still think this is the greatest gig in the world and I’ll tell you why.

I was on my way to law school with a full-ride scholarship (The College Dropout (Not Just a Kanye West Album)) when one day I just quit. I wasn’t happy in school and I sure as hell wasn’t going to be happy with the lifestyle of a lawyer. I wanted a job to give me the flexibility to have the life that I wanted OUTSIDE of work, and being a flight attendant does that for me!

Being a flight attendant means that when I go home, I don’t bring my work with me. The moment I am off that aircraft I go back to being Jaylin Pruitt. I don’t stress about how to improve the company, or how to climb the ladder. I am content knowing that if I go to work, I smile, and I do a good job, I will get my salary, a yearly raise, and many bonuses (granted the company doesn’t fail) without any stress. This job also allows me to have a LIFE. Maybe I worked a lot of weekends in the beginning, and maybe I am on-call 6 days out of the month, but a majority of the time, I am off having a life much more often than anybody else that I know. I have so much flexibility with my schedule (minus maybe major holidays) that whenever I want to take off and spend a chunk of time with my friends or family, I CAN. That is the beauty of the job! If I wanted, I could take a vacation every single month. I have that much time off! I would say that the average person has a max of 8 days off a month with their 9-5 job. With my job, I have a guaranteed 10 days off a month, plus more if I maneuver my schedule a bit. What could beat that?

Maybe I am not off saving lives, molding minds, or even making a million dollars…but I am making a good chunk of change, while I do a job that isn’t completely terrible, to live the life that I want. And really, isn’t that all that we really want? We don’t want a job, we want a life! Now, when I am off during the week I am able to utilize my own time by giving back to the community and doing something meaningful by volunteering for Second Harvest Food Bank. When I am off, I have the time to spend my money doing things that I actually want to do. I mean there is no use making millions if you can’t ever spend it, right? When I am off I am able to fully dedicate my time to making memories with my family and friends and provide them with my full attention and support, sometimes for multiple days at a time! Those are just the types of things that you wouldn’t be able to do with a normal job.

So shoutout to all the nurses, doctors, teachers, and anyone else doing a job that makes this world a better place! I salute you for that and appreciate all that you do and I know you do it well and it provides you with joy and fulfillment! For me though, I am happy with my meaningless job that gives me the ability to make a life that I love!

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