Friday, April 10, 2009

Sociology and Work 101

I have been teaching a Sociology of Work class at a local college to adult students for years now. At the opening of each class I ask the students to write a paragraph or so in response to the following " If I didn't have to worry about money I would spend my time doing..." What has intrigued me the most is that out of the hundreds of adult students I have taught only two have said that they wouldn't change a thing. One was an active mother and IT consultant and the other a mother which six children and working as a librarian.I must admit I am jealous.Imagine the significance of this response? These individuals really must be completely vocationallly actualized. After getting to know each student a little I believed that they are what they do and they did who they are.

Additionally,if I look back over this unscientific research in the ivy covered walls I would find that many of the male students responded to this query by saying they would try to find something that would allow them to spend more time with their families.Most of my students have described volunteering, helping the poor or sick as an alternative to traditional jobs if earning money was not an issue .

Of course the irony here is that I have been a college counselor for undeclared majors trying to help students to decide on a major and career path. Also, I served as a Director of Outplacment services for a consulting firm and provided counsel and assistance to laid off employees to find new work. I had even started a non-for- profit , with my old mentor Herb, to give career guidance to unemployed adults through religious institutions around the country. I was featured in newspapers,magazines and even interviewed on a national television program about career choices and job hunting. I was the "subject matter expert" of sorts. Here I was,and am , a college admin, college professor, high school teacher, mangement consultant, salesman, management training facilitator, spiritual director and facititator, basketball coach,tennis coach, golf coach, semi professional musician and non for profit board member.("Teacher,teach thyself!") I still pray about my own callling(vocation.)

There is a lot of research out there about the relationship between job satisfaction , stress and cardio vascular disease.
I read somewhere that the prime time for heart attacks for adult men is ealy Monday morning...before we go to work!
This fact even makes my own work and bout with arterial sclerosis even more interesting. Here I have been teaching and preaching about job stress and focus to clients and I end up having a double Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery (Heart Bypass Surgery, CABG.!!) This is just the beginning as I know there is much more to say and write about this phenomena.

It would be interesting to hear from a few folks to find out what they are doing now,their gender, age and description of what one might do(work,travel,family,volunteer etc ) if one didn't have to worry about money.There isalso a short survey on the side panel that might be interesting,

No comments:

Post a Comment