Help with career decision

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  #1  
Old 01-27-07, 05:42 PM
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Help with career decision

Can anyone give me a pearl of wisdom on what to do about my career ?
I'm 44 years old and I'm in a funk about my career.
I have worked in several different fields thruout my career from the bicycle industry for 13 years and auto machanic and copier tech for 14 years and now copier sales for the last 3 years.
I love fixing cars but not under a hood for 40 hours a week.
I love selling but selling copiers is the most Cut-Throat business I've ever encountered.
Selling cars is not my thing either.
I don't want to work with my hands anymore allthough I am gifted there.

What do I do ?

Please help
 
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  #2  
Old 01-27-07, 07:12 PM
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My father in law was in construction, auto repair, and home improvement for about 30 years. A fall off a roof that rammed his lower leg into his upper leg ended any sort of physical labor. Went to cooking school for 2 years, and now he is an AWESOME chef.
 
  #3  
Old 01-27-07, 07:13 PM
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Keep looking?

It can be difficult to find a career that is both enjoyable and pays well. Any special reason you no longer wish to work with your hands/something you are good at?
 
  #4  
Old 01-27-07, 07:35 PM
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I like what Orvil Redenbacher said in one of his popcorn commercials. He said, "Do one thing and do it better than anyone else". No matter what we do for a living, it's the rare bird that loves to go to work every day because they love their job so much. It's a nice idea and some of us get to live it out, but not many. For most of us, it's called work for a reason. I've gotten old enough to come to the realization that it doesn't matter what I do for a living, as long as it pays and is legal, I'll do it. I've done floors for about twenty years now and it's crossed my mind to try something else a few times, but this is what I'm known for, I'm good at it so I'm in high demand, and I make a good living. Did you get that? I make a good living. An auto mechanic makes a good living, one that is good at it is in high demand, and he makes a good living. It just doesn't matter what you do so long as it makes a good living. Why? Because what we do can't be who we are or we're always looking for something better, more satisfying, and so on. Work is just work. It's what we do out side of work that brings fulfillment in life. If our life centers around ourself, nothing will ever satisfy. My two cents is, do what you do best and don't worry about what it is. Be the best there is at that thing, get off work in the evening, and then begin to live. Work is just a tool to produce income. Income is just a tool to facilitate life, and work ain't it.
 
  #5  
Old 01-28-07, 08:09 AM
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The only way to stand out in a field is to put in more effort than everybody else. The only way you can do that without sacrificing mental peace is to love what you do.
 
  #6  
Old 01-28-07, 09:13 AM
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You might consider being a Service Advisor in a car dealership. The guy that talks to people about repairs.

I'm with Smokey. Face it, you won't love every minute of any job but you need the money (I assume) so don't expect Utopia! I tried to be passionate about jobs and enjoy the excitement for as long as I could because I knew it wouldn't last. I could adjust my attitude to enjoy virtually any job.

You still need to be at work for 1/2 of your awake time so if you have a job you hate...life won't be great even if you are making tons of money. My last job paid well but I became stressed to the hilt and wasn't enjoying my off-work time. I retired. Now I'm looking for something else but I won't go overboard this time around. As Smokey says......balance it out. (as if I know what I'm talking about!)
 
  #7  
Old 01-28-07, 09:40 AM
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Hey,
Thanks for all of the advice. Real good stuff from everybody !
Mjd2k, thanks I have considered a Service Writer but isn't that one of the most stressful jobs ?
Smokey49, I'm gonna print that !
Marksr, yes, I need something more mentaly stimulating and want to interact more with people. When working with my hands it's more solitude and less social.
I'd love to find something that integrates both.
I would love to start my own business but don't have any money aside to get it going and don't have a rich uncle to borrow $ and don't want to put up my house. ( excuses, excuses, excuses, I know.)
My best job was my first job in the bicycle industry. I would love to have bike rental consession at the beach but not sure how to aquire.
I'm also a good welder and pondering if I could open up a automotive specialty shop just doing floors, quarter panels and such on the older and custom cars.
I just don't want to go from job to job and wander.

I know in my heart that what I'm doing now aint it.

Your thoughts on my ideas ???
 
  #8  
Old 01-28-07, 09:56 AM
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"Income is just a tool to facilitate life, and work ain't it."

I great philosophy. I worked for 40 years, sometimes at jobs I loved and sometimes at jobs I hated. Along the way it paid for my habits (fishing, golf, tools). More importantly I worked so that I wouldn't always have to work. Now I work for me. I work at golf. I work at fishing, I work at making sawdust and I even work at laying on the beach now and then.
 
  #9  
Old 01-28-07, 10:02 AM
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One of the things that worries me the most is being able to put 3 girls through college.
I didn't go and it's my ONLY regret in life.
My kids are going to college no matter what !
I'll pump gas if I have to but thier going to college some how.
Not so much interested in my stuff, more concerned about my kids but need something I can live with and pays well.
Believe me I have lots of stuff I enjoy like fishing, golfing , my '67 stang but that pales in comparison to my kids needs.

Again, your thoughts on my ideas and any good ways to aquire capital to open a small business ?
 

Last edited by Mackey; 01-28-07 at 10:28 AM.
  #10  
Old 01-28-07, 11:42 AM
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While it won't work for all types of work, I'm a firm believer that whenever possible a new businesss should start out 'on the side' keeping your regular income, working on the side for extra money but more importantly building up a business base and reputation. This will help to eliminate some of the start up expense and with your old job you still have a steady income to live on until the business gets on it's feet.
 
  #11  
Old 01-28-07, 06:30 PM
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sounds like you really want to work for yourself. this is a great goal, but you can soon find out it takes more work than you can imagine. there are many opportunities in the bike field. Go to garage sales/auctions and pick up bikes for next to nothing. fix them and sell them. advertise in the local ads to fix them for people. Since you can weld, start customizing them. customized bikes are hot right now. learn all you can about "fitting" a bike to a person. bikes have several "niche" areas. focus on one of those.You start small, beat big shop prices, and do quality work. build the reputation. It doesn't happen overnight, but with hard quality work, it can happen.
if you really love something, and are good at it, you can make a living at it. hard work, and imagination. Did i mention hard work? Don't give up your dream.

take your spouse to the local small business bureau. talk to them. they can give you worlds of advice and mentoring from other business owners.
 
  #12  
Old 01-28-07, 06:53 PM
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Thanks Tae, that was very inspiring and yes I've always wanted to work for myself.
I got out the bike business just as the ATB bikes were realy taking off, before that the business was flat and wasn't earning enough $$$ to support a family and was getting married.
I am still an excellent wheel man, can lace up a mean set of wheels. I was the best ! Yea, I am bragging.
Oh' and I'm not afraid of hard work.
What do you mean about custom bikes, like a Chopper bicycle or custom ATB or custom Road racer, can you be more specific ?
I've been trying to get a ticket to the Winter International Bicycle Trade show but not sure if it comes to the East Coast anymore.
Even the venders I worked with are no longer around.

Who are the big guys these days.
Now I see Schwinns in Kmart stores, what's with that ?

What more do you know about the current bike business ?
 
  #13  
Old 01-29-07, 03:42 PM
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each style of bike has their own ways to customize, but here are a couple of places to look at. the lowrider bikes are featured in lowrider magazine, and doc chopper traded a tattoo artist on "miami ink" for some artwork. this ought to get your imagination working.

http://www.lowriderbike.com/bike_features/index1.html

http://www.docschoppers.com/

http://stores.ebay.com/Docs-Old-School-Chopper-Bicycles (ebay $545-650.00)

also offering to fix bikes, like mountain bikes can be a good thing. they are always breaking parts. there are several biking magazines, each one with their own focus. Visiting the big stores, and the small shops will give you an idea of whats going on nowadays. also look for the local bicycle clubs. I tell you what though, you go cruising the beach on a custom, you will get stopped and asked about it. good for business.
 
  #14  
Old 01-29-07, 07:19 PM
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You must be on the West Coast because I never heard of anybody cruising the beach at the Jersey Shore.
I tried it once when I was kid, that is riding my Sears 26'' Cruiser in the sand. Dosen't work to well. LOL
The East Coast has the "Board Walk" and all bikes have to off the boards by 11:00 AM and the roads lead to the beach not parallel with the beach like the West Coast. PCH

Thanks for the ideas, all very do-able !
 
  #15  
Old 01-29-07, 08:54 PM
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http://www.shorecycleclub.org/

The Shore Cycle Club is a non-profit organization devoted to promoting bicycling for fun, friendship, and fitness throughout southern New Jersey. Today there are over 150 members that include recreational cyclists, mountain bikers, racers, tri-athletes and general fitness enthusiasts, all with varying degrees of cycling ability.

Our club members live mostly in Atlantic, Cape May, Ocean, and Cumberland Counties, and some members are from more distant parts of New Jersey as well as from Pennsylvania and Delaware. A few members are summer or weekend-only shore residents; most are working people, some are retirees. Most of our rides and activities are based in the South Jersey shore areas and surrounding pinelands forests.

The club sponsors two annual fund-raising ride
 
  #16  
Old 01-30-07, 05:48 AM
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Could you go into the design aspect of cycles or mechanics ,with a few courses ?


Or if you really wanted and could use your hands in the blooming field of
wheel chair repair

What ever you do try some aptitude testing ,or seek out a community career counselor (free)--lol

Just to give you some ideas and if you need any course that may help

Best of luck in whatever you decide

I recently (motor vehicle accident ) had to change career paths ,I choose to incorprorate my hobby into a business --Some don't have that luxury ,but I also Had a few years of physical therapy to think about/work on it lol
 
  #17  
Old 01-30-07, 04:25 PM
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I have looked into the wheel chair field. Just think when all of the baby boomers start getting into their 70's.
There will be an electric wheel chair explosion.
I wouldn't be surprized if Hummer or Cadilac get in on the opportunity. Just kidding.
 
  #18  
Old 01-30-07, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by tae View Post
http://www.shorecycleclub.org/

The Shore Cycle Club is a non-profit organization devoted to promoting bicycling for fun, friendship, and fitness throughout southern New Jersey. Today there are over 150 members that include recreational cyclists, mountain bikers, racers, tri-athletes and general fitness enthusiasts, all with varying degrees of cycling ability.

Our club members live mostly in Atlantic, Cape May, Ocean, and Cumberland Counties, and some members are from more distant parts of New Jersey as well as from Pennsylvania and Delaware. A few members are summer or weekend-only shore residents; most are working people, some are retirees. Most of our rides and activities are based in the South Jersey shore areas and surrounding pinelands forests.

The club sponsors two annual fund-raising ride
I didn't know this was right under my nose. I'll check out your org and may join.
 
  #19  
Old 01-31-07, 02:13 PM
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Couple things, first, about the kid’s education, depending on their age, find a good 529 plan for them. The younger they are the cheaper. That helps if you are starting a business. Look for the plans on the internet. Most states have them and most large insurance companies have them. A financial planner can help.

As for starting a business, try to do what you like to do in your spare time. Second try to find something your good at. I think you are heading that way already. I like to hear people say, “I am the best”. That’s where you want to be. Research the bike/wheelchair idea. If your area can handle a store like that, you only need to looking for capital, a place to have the store/shop and guts.

Then there is also working for someone in the field. Look for someone long on tooth and maybe you can help them make the decision to retire early and work a buyout for you.
 
  #20  
Old 01-31-07, 05:30 PM
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there's a blooming wheelchair repair field? we do this everyday at work for free! i can make money at it? cool. may need to change my career path!
 
  #21  
Old 02-03-07, 09:58 AM
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Nowadays wheels chairs don't use pnuematic tires or have spokes any more.
They use solid tires and use what I call "Tuff Wheels" style wheels. About
25 years ago a company called Tuff Wheels introduced a molded plastic 5 spoke wheel for BMX bikes and now I see a version of them on modern wheel chairs.
I foresee a real opportunity in electric skooters the kind you see Senoir Citizens ride on in ..... Mart .
 
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