In today’s economy, workers must be willing to change careers at the drop of an earnings report so they can fit into an ever-evolving business landscape.
Your job is eliminated because your company decides that a computer can do it faster and cheaper. So you retrain yourself to be a high-tech specialist. Then your computer job is outsourced to India. So you pack your bags and move to New Delhi. There you discover that India has been outsourced to China.
Maybe the secret to finding a reliable career isn’t anticipating a future trend and inventing a job based on what you think people will require 10 years from now. Perhaps you need to go retro, taking a moneymaking activity from your past and retooling it into a successful occupation that will sustain itself for years to come.
In other words, have you ever thought about a career as a babysitter?
I’m not taking about a person who watches somebody else’s kids for a few hours every Saturday night. I’m talking about a full-time babysitter — 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Many couples nowadays work evening shifts or overnight shifts, so with a little effort you should be able to put together a schedule in which you are babysitting around the clock.
To accomplish this, you’ll have to undercut the teenage girls willing to sort of watch children between cellphone calls and bites of pizza for $10 an hour. To get a constant stream of clients, you’ll need to lowball these young ladies by charging parents $1 an hour.
Wait a minute, you’re saying. A measly $1 an hour? That’s only $24 a day. That’s only $8,760 a year. How can I afford anything making that paltry sum?
Stop and think about this for a moment. You’re going to be constantly babysitting. That means you’re going to be constantly living in someone else’s home.
You won’t have to pay mortgage or rent. You won’t have to pay for electricity. Or natural gas. Or water. Or trash. You won’t have to pay for cable TV or Netflix.
You won’t have to pay for food. Just eat anything in the refrigerator that hasn’t yet turned into penicillin.
When your clothes get dirty, throw them into the parents’ washer and dryer.
And you won’t need a car. All you have to do is persuade the parents you just worked for to drive you “home.” You don’t have to tell them “home” is the home of the next people you’re babysitting for.
Without all those expenses, you should easily save $8,000 a year. How many people with ritzier careers put away that much money?
Besides, you won’t have to retire. You’ll be able to sit around doing nothing and still maintain a profitable babysitting career.
Granted, you’ll be a wanderer, a wayfarer, a vagabond — the stuff of a million poems. But you’ll be pulling down a lot more money than any poet.
Granted, you won’t have any friends. But they would just get you in trouble by coming over and making out in the parents’ bedroom.
Granted, you’ll be spending all your time with anklebiters, yardapes and crumbcrunchers. But think about the entrepreneurial example you’ll be setting for the youths of tomorrow as you sit in your underwear watching “Game of Thrones” on their parents’ Vizio as your clothes tumble in their parents’ Kenmore.
Free enterprise has never looked so proud.
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