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Careers Career change

AG74683

Cyburbian
Messages
7,094
Points
39
As of 3:45, the CM and I have decided that we should mutually part ways. I'll be employed here as a consultant until December. I should be freaking out about this, but I'm so ecstatic. I feel like all the stress in the world has been lifted from my shoulders. In case it wasn't apparent, I haven't been happy with this job for years. It's made me a bitter, horrible person, someone I don't care for at all. Every day it was a struggle to come in, and there was a pit in my stomach most mornings. It pained me to think I went to college for 4 years to earn a degree where most of my day was spent arguing over where to put a shed. Maybe a different job location would have seen me continue in the planning field, but I think it would have been more of the same. The technical stuff (variances, conditional uses, rezonings, etc.) interested me, and I enjoyed doing that part. The day to day permit issuance drove me up the wall.

I'll be in the office until August 31st, and then transition to an out of office employee responding on an as needed basis. I drove right from the meeting to talk to the EMS Director. He's posting a part time EMT-B position right now. Barring any unforeseen circumstances, I'll start there as a part time employee and in October move towards paramedic school. People search their whole lives for a job that doesn't feel like a slog, something interesting that they love going to. I found mine, but I was so afraid of change that I chose to continue to be miserable. Now the change is forced, so lets do it!
 

DVD

Cyburbian
Messages
14,808
Points
51
Congrats, finding what you want to do in life is hard. I've been doing this for years and I still only feel like it's a satisfactory career choice. It doesn't annoy me enough to find something else, but listening to people that love their job, that's just not me. Go forth and conquer that new career, but don't forget to come back here and laugh at the rest of us.
 

Maister

Chairman of the bored
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
28,414
Points
71
Moderator note:

split from RTDNTOTO

Good luck! Most jobs have parts of them that are distasteful and other parts that are more appealing. It's seldom purely black and white, but rather shades of grey I find, but c'est la vie.
 

luckless pedestrian

Super Moderator
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Moderator
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12,325
Points
52
My father used to say to us kids, I don't care what you do for a living, I just want you to get up every morning and want to go to work, and I want you to have a life that you are happy to come home to

so I surmise that your EMT work gives you the most contentment to your day just by what you post and how you write it so I think you are doing the right thing
 

AG74683

Cyburbian
Messages
7,094
Points
39
One step at a time man. You are probably doing the right thing for your own mental health.
I hope. Right now, I'm not sure if I can financially make it work. There's a good chance I'll end up losing my house. With student loan payments and other debt, I'm not sure how I'll make a major salary cut work.
 

luckless pedestrian

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
12,325
Points
52
I hope. Right now, I'm not sure if I can financially make it work. There's a good chance I'll end up losing my house. With student loan payments and other debt, I'm not sure how I'll make a major salary cut work.
Oh I didn't see this in the other thread -

is EMT part-time? If it is, then maybe you get another part-time job, in EMT in a neighboring community or something else?

I am so sorry
 

AG74683

Cyburbian
Messages
7,094
Points
39
Oh I didn't see this in the other thread -

is EMT part-time? If it is, then maybe you get another part-time job, in EMT in a neighboring community or something else?

I am so sorry
It'll be full time, hopefully. Initially it'll be part time. Even as a full time EMT-B, the pay cut is close to 25k a year. Once I get to paramedic it'll go up, probably close to what I make now, but that's no guarantee. The hours are going to be tough too. They run 24 hour shifts here. My support system to watch/take care of my dog is very shaky right now, and I don't know how much longer it'll last. I may end up having to give her to my parents. I can't even fathom doing that, but it might be the only way to make this career change work.

The CM basically gave me two options. 1) Basically a separation agreement or 2) go down the road of micromanagement with limited ability to do anything besides sit in the office (no fire calls, no flexibility in schedules, have to check in/out whenever I go anywhere, etc.). I chose 1, maybe a little bit quickly. I felt that 2 just set me up for eventually being let go with absolutely no safety net. With option 1, I basically become a paid consultant from September 1 to December 31. They'll pay my salary and benefits up until that date. That seemed like a killer deal and a blank check for me to move forward with a career change. I was excited until reality set in that financially, it may be impossible to swing.
 

MD Planner

Cyburbian
Messages
2,391
Points
35
Ok take a deep breath. Think of it this way: you have almost half a year before the money you make now stops. That's way more than most people get who lose their job so you're ahead of the game already. Your CM has given you a big gift there that he didn't really have to. You can keep a lot more money in your pocket by forgoing unnecessary spending now that you know your reality in 5 months. Keep doing the EMT thing because that's where your heart is. Pursue that diligently but in the meantime, (and by that I mean today), find another job you can do in the evenings or weekends. Even if it is at WalMart. There are still jobs to be had. You need to make as much extra as you can the next 5 months in order to give yourself a cushion and not have to worry about house payments starting the first of the year. You could probably defer your student loans at that point if you had to for a period of time. Also consider a carefully vetted roommate as a way to save on expenses as well. A niche I've discovered is that there are a lot of professional people who travel or live in an area for a certain period of time for a particular project or job. That might be a good place to start with that. A pain to live with someone but some short-term pain in order to keep your house may be the most practical thing to do.

You're going to be fine. Just be proactive and keep pushing forward. Easier said than done I know but you can do this and keep your house.
 
Last edited:

kms

Cyburbian
Messages
6,372
Points
39
Ok take a deep breath. Think of it this way: you have almost half a year before the money you make now stops. That's way more than most people get who lose their job so you're ahead of the game already. Your CM has given you a big gift there that he didn't really have to. You can keep a lot more money in your pocket by forgoing unnecessary now that you know your reality in 5 months. Keep doing the EMT thing because that's where your heart is. Pursue that diligently but in the meantime, (and by that I mean today), find another job you can do in the evenings or weekends. Even if it is at WalMart. There are still jobs to be had. You need to make as much extra as you can the next 5 months in order to give yourself a cushion and not have to worry about house payments starting the first of the year. You could probably defer your student loans at that point if you had to for a period of time. Also consider a carefully vetted roommate as a way to save on expenses as well. A niche I've discovered is that there are a lot of professional people who travel or live in an area for a certain period of time for a particular project or job. That might be a good place to start with that. A pain to live with someone but some short-term pain in order to keep your house may be the most practical thing to do.

You're going to be fine. Just be proactive and keep pushing forward. Easier said than done I know but you can do this and keep your house.
I'm going to tag onto this.

Yes, your CM has given you the gift of time. Show your appreciation by doing a good job, and by not complaining about your job to anyone, not even on line. You are at the CM's mercy right now.

If you approach the next few months with gratitude, you may learn that you don't really hate what you do as much as you think you do. Use this time to be a little introspective, and think about what you could have done better while at this job. You only control your actions and reactions despite what the world throws at you.

You'll be fine.
 

AG74683

Cyburbian
Messages
7,094
Points
39
Keep doing the EMT thing because that's where your heart is. Pursue that diligently but in the meantime, (and by that I mean today), find another job you can do in the evenings or weekends. Even if it is at WalMart. There are still jobs to be had. You need to make as much extra as you can the next 5 months in order to give yourself a cushion and not have to worry about house payments starting the first of the year.
I've already applied for several part time EMT jobs. I can do those evenings or weekends fairly easily. they're 12 hour shifts so fitting them in with a regular work schedule during the evenings might be difficult, but I'll have to manage.

I've talked with a few guys I know who work with EMS here, and there's money to be made, it just takes some time. The paramedic pay is very competitive from what I understand. And there's a ton of overtime hours you can pick up if you want.
 

RandomPlanner

Cyburbian
Messages
1,723
Points
25
You can totally do this!

Also, now you'll have "Planning Consultant" on your resume -- which, IF you wanted, could turn into other consulting jobs that you could do on the side. I've worked for several municipalities that allowed me to consult without ever going to a Board meeting, etc. so it could totally be done on your off-EMT time. And as a consultant, you get to choose which planning jobs you want to do and which ones you don't bother bidding on.

It takes a lot of chutzpah to take this kind of leap of faith and really go after what you want. Don't doubt yourself now. Prove to yourself that you made the right decision!
 

luckless pedestrian

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
12,325
Points
52
You can totally do this!

Also, now you'll have "Planning Consultant" on your resume -- which, IF you wanted, could turn into other consulting jobs that you could do on the side. I've worked for several municipalities that allowed me to consult without ever going to a Board meeting, etc. so it could totally be done on your off-EMT time. And as a consultant, you get to choose which planning jobs you want to do and which ones you don't bother bidding on.

It takes a lot of chutzpah to take this kind of leap of faith and really go after what you want. Don't doubt yourself now. Prove to yourself that you made the right decision!
to add to this - you might want to consider emergency management and planning as a secondary job with your county emergency planning team - it's an easy slide from planning to emergency planning and most of the training courses are online with FEMA - given the planet now, this will likely be a usable skill that also marries your EMT skills with planning
 

AG74683

Cyburbian
Messages
7,094
Points
39
You can totally do this!

Also, now you'll have "Planning Consultant" on your resume -- which, IF you wanted, could turn into other consulting jobs that you could do on the side. I've worked for several municipalities that allowed me to consult without ever going to a Board meeting, etc. so it could totally be done on your off-EMT time. And as a consultant, you get to choose which planning jobs you want to do and which ones you don't bother bidding on.

It takes a lot of chutzpah to take this kind of leap of faith and really go after what you want. Don't doubt yourself now. Prove to yourself that you made the right decision!
I have an interview one group tomorrow. They're the one who offer the medic school so I really hope it goes well.

As for the planning consultant, I have an idea how I may become a permanent one. I told the CM during our meeting that the job is really not a one person deal. It's too much work for one person, but not enough for 2 full time positions if that makes any sense. I said he'd be better off training an inspector or permit tech. to handle daily simple questions (what's the setback, what's my property zoned) or simple permit issuance and hire a third party (COG, consultant, etc.) to handle the technical matters (CUP's, subdivisions, rezonings, etc.). He could save money since the consultant wouldn't need to be paid benefits. I may pitch that idea to him just to see what he thinks.

to add to this - you might want to consider emergency management and planning as a secondary job with your county emergency planning team - it's an easy slide from planning to emergency planning and most of the training courses are online with FEMA - given the planet now, this will likely be a usable skill that also marries your EMT skills with planning
Well until all this happened, the idea was that once the current EM retires, I'd be transitioning to that job. It doesn't look like he's leaving soon enough though. Emergency Management is absolutely where I want to go. Either that or EMS administration.
 

RandomPlanner

Cyburbian
Messages
1,723
Points
25
...As for the planning consultant, I have an idea how I may become a permanent one. I told the CM during our meeting that the job is really not a one person deal. It's too much work for one person, but not enough for 2 full time positions if that makes any sense. I said he'd be better off training an inspector or permit tech. to handle daily simple questions (what's the setback, what's my property zoned) or simple permit issuance and hire a third party (COG, consultant, etc.) to handle the technical matters (CUP's, subdivisions, rezonings, etc.). He could save money since the consultant wouldn't need to be paid benefits. I may pitch that idea to him just to see what he thinks...
I was actually thinking along those lines in your initial post when you said which parts of the job you liked and which parts you don't like. I agree with you -- I don't want to issue permits all day long. But, thank God, I've always worked in a Planning Department that was large enough that I didn't have to -- even at the beginning of my career.
...

For me, both times that I went back to school, I doubted myself. The first time, I ran out of money and had to downsize my entire life; then it took 6 months after graduation to find a job in my field making 25% less than before I went back to school. The second time, my first professor in grad school (an adjunct) had a job title lower than the own I had just quit (you can imagine how unsure of myself that made me feel); it took me almost 2 years to find a job after that round of college and by that time, I had accumulated way more debt than I should have. In the long run though, these decisions were the right ones. I work in a field that I love (for the most part) and have a solid life/work balance which is so important for me.
 

Tobinn

Cyburbian
Messages
325
Points
11
I've already applied for several part time EMT jobs. I can do those evenings or weekends fairly easily. they're 12 hour shifts so fitting them in with a regular work schedule during the evenings might be difficult, but I'll have to manage.

I've talked with a few guys I know who work with EMS here, and there's money to be made, it just takes some time. The paramedic pay is very competitive from what I understand. And there's a ton of overtime hours you can pick up if you want.
That's the spirit! And what a noble profession; literally saving lives!! You've got this. I think we're all rooting for you.
 
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