Chances are if you went to college you may have been taught an adjunct professor. Someone who is educated at a level of a Master’s Degree or higher. He or she has tons of valuable experience to share with students, — and makes a difference.

Sounds like a great job, — but show them the money.

Adjuncts are at the bottom of the salary ladder. earning a few thousand per semester without benefits.

If we think about it there are experts everywhere adjuncting all over the country, in fast food restaurants, supermarkets, retail stores, — anything that pays low wages and is part time.

That is where the US is going and the train is not ready to stop. If you think I’m kidding there is a story that was released today that robots are now delivering pizza for Dominos. First its Dominos, then its Macy’s, McDonald’s, and so on. Don’t think they’ll occupy your cubicle; don’t bet against it. Robots are expensive on the front end with maintenance and cheap for the long-term, no training, health care, benefits, paycheck, shall I go on.

What can be done about this?

  1. Teach yourself on your own: College is great, but we don’t need it to learn marketable skills. And plus you can get educated for the total cost of $0, — but you have to put in the work and the hours, — that is your cost of the investment.
  2. Read books by James Altucher, Angela Duckworth, Brene Brown, Seth Godin and Tim Ferriss to stay motivated and be inspired. Altucher has become one of my favorites.
  3. Refrain from watching TV and mindless radio. I have been suckered in for quite some time to be hypnotized to watch TV and follow the news. Invest in yourself and be aware of your leisure time watching TV. As Seth Godin says in “It’s Your Turn” you don’t get paid for watching TV. Take it from me, I’ve learned the hard way.
  4. Watch videos on YouTube on computer programming, copywriting, Virtual Reality, and gravitate to things that are interesting to you that an employer could value.
  5. Be nice and likable to others. Network and ask others for advice. Only consult those who see the ‘glass half full’.
  6. Don’t get discouraged. It is not easy to learn something news, however it is not impossible,
  7. Make progress EVERY day. Be consistent, — even if it’s only for 5 minutes, you may be surprised the amount of learning you can obtain in a month.
  8. Track your progress with a journal, — see what you have learned and keep going.
  9. Network and ask for open positions in fields that may be of interest to you.
  10. Start a blog, or podcast. This gives you a feeling of ownership, that no one can take away from you. Try to blog and publish on a daily basis. If you blog 300 times in a year with 300 words you approach 100,000 words. Pick something that is relevant and share your content for free using http://www.wordpress.com. You might say “I am not a good writer!” That’s BS, — if you write a little bit everyday for a year you will become one.
  11. For writing the best I ever got was from a customer’s T-Shirt working in the supermarket. It read “Even if it’s crap, just get it on the page.” I will never forget that. If someone is perceived to be a better writer than you that doesn’t write, then believe you are the better writer.
  12. It’s okay to try and fail along the road learning, — but stick with something. The most successful people took years to find their groove. Take it from me: I’m a stock clerk and an adjunct who is trying to carve a niche and supply more for my family and I refuse to give up.
  13. Sell something on eBay. Selling something on eBay gives me confidence, even if I make a couple of bucks, it provides validation that you are doing something write.
  14. Get comfortable being uncomfortable. There have been things I’ve done like this cheesy blog, putting my info and thoughts out in the world. I’m fearful at times, but I say do it anyway,
  15. Don’t give up? Keep thinking of things and ideas and keep a journal tracking your thoughts and managing your time.
  16. Be grateful for your family and friends. So important and make sure on your personal journey to always be aware of those you love and especially those that love you.
  17. Stay away from negative people, — far, far away, Get earplugs if you have to. One negative person who argues for your limitations is all it takes to ruin the day of five successful, encouraging people. Avoid them like the plague and don’t let them infect your thought process.
  18. Shut off technology when you are learning. I often ask my students: “Do you own technology or does technology own you?” Admittedly, I am horrible when it comes to staring at my mobile device, checking my blog for traffic, emails, who called, stock quotes, news, etc. However, I have been turning the phone off when I go to bed. Being aware of our tech addiction is the first step to addressing it.
  19. Love your family and show appreciation. (Similar to #16, but always worth repeating). My family is amazing and I am fortunate to have them for support and encouragement, even during the challenging times.
  20. Treat yourself: Pat yourself on the back or take a nice walk and a deep breath.
  21. Stare at the sky at night and realize you are part of the amazing universe.

These 21 thoughts I put out there, cannot guaranteed yours or my success, but if you can just keep at it a little per day, in 30 days you may have a few new skills that are marketable and keep you ahead of the game, regardless of your age.

The reality is that many workers are adjuncts and clerks and cashiers working for companies and learning institutions that are friendly, — but if the pay is low and the work is not inspiring it may be time to make a change.

The only thing constant in life is change and I hope if you are a little restless and hear the robots in the distance you may want to think about learning and pivoting your skill set.

Don’t give up.

Advertisements