“So how much are you making these days?”……… once you graduate or for some of you even before you graduate, this will be a common question from your friends. For the first time in your life, how much you are making in salary ends up being a measure of how successful or intelligent you are. But is it a good measure…….?  I’ll let you make up your own mind, since there is no right or wrong answer, but in this post I’ll give you a quick summary of my story and how I dealt with the question.

As I was getting ready to graduate with my shiny new degree in 2009, the world economy decided to collapse and fall apart. The Dow Jones index dropped to somewhere around 6500 (that’s really bad!) There weren’t a lot of companies lining up to hire people, in fact people were getting fired from their jobs that they’ve held for years. (Cue Donald Trump’s voice….YOU’RE FIRED!!) So my shiny new degree that I worked so hard for was worth less than the paper it was printed on.

After two months of unsuccessfully applying to jobs everywhere…I took the best job offer I could find (the only job offer I could find). $15 an hour was my first job out of college, graduated Magna Cum Laud with a dual concentration in 4 years, and the only job I could find was for $15 dollars an hour.  That’s $31,200 a year…….. the manager at Dunkin Donuts who didn’t go to college made $36,000 a year. Yea that stung a little. So was that my worth? All the potential people told me I had, all those A’s in my transcript, all that accounted to a nice around number of $15 an hour. When my friends asked me how much I was making back then, I lied. I said “I don’t like discussing salary” looking back I wish I hadn’t lied……. I asked a question earlier, is salary a good measure of your intelligence and success. If it is, than that number screams below average does it not?

Fast forward 2 years, and now I’m making 55k a year with a shiny title. Whoa that’s quite the leap, now answer that same question. Is Salary still a good measure? Because obviously my intelligence didn’t double in 2 years…….The most important lesson I learned since graduating college, is that the only person who can ever define how intelligent you are or what your worth, or how successful you are going to be is you. So if your friends ask you how much you are making tell them the truth, because you know that you are not defined by that number, it’s just a beginning.   If you are making less than what you think you should be making……keep your head up, keep working hard, and keep learning, look at everyday as an opportunity to learn something you didn’t know yesterday. I promise you that before you know it  you’ll be screaming  “SHOW ME THE MONEY!

2 Responses to “SHOW ME THE MONEY!!”
  1. Amy says:

    I have to completely agree with you on this one. Money and salary are just numbers on a piece of paper. People think that the more you make, the happier you are and the better your life. And yes, money is nice to have, but it’s not what is ultimately important. You have to be happy with yourself and who you are. The rest will fall into place.

  2. This one is my favorite yet!

%d bloggers like this: