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Would you work for someone who stresses you out even if the money was good?

I decided to roll with this one this morning because it’s a subject that’s actually quite near and dear to me.

My first job when I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree was doing phone-based tech support for a software company who’s product allowed insurance agents to compare rates for potential clients. I enjoyed the challenge and I enjoyed the people I worked with on the team. And I really enjoyed the money.

But it very quickly became apparent that I was a tool for them. They didn’t care if I was happy, they didn’t care if I was feeling valued, and they really didn’t care about what was going on when I wasn’t at work. While I was there Mom had a terrible car accident and had to have surgery on her back. I ended up being the one to take care of her and had to take FMLA to cover my absence. No one there gave a shit.

It got to the point where I was crying every morning before leaving. I was utterly miserable. I decided to start looking for a different job and saw an opening for a position at the IT help desk here at the university. The only “problem” was that the pay was significantly lower. But I applied, interviewed, and ended up taking the job.

I’ve never regretted it.

When my mental health issues finally came to a head, I had support from my boss and my colleagues. When I decided to go back to school – both times – I had support from everyone. I’m challenged, I’m valued, and I feel like I’m part of something larger. I love it here.

I could quite easily make way more money working in a corporate environment, but I know that’s not where I belong. I’d much rather be poor and happy than wealthy and miserable.