Workers, Remember This: You Have The Power!

The idea floating around that employees are mere subjects to external forces has little bearing in reality.

Nothing could be further from the truth than to say that the typical employee has little to do with his or her own destiny. I’m experiencing this lesson firsthand.

Currently, I am in between jobs, so-to-speak. In late November, I was laid off from my full-time job because of changing market conditions. I sort of knew it was coming, so I was mentally prepared for it, but being laid off is never something pleasant.

The good news is that I was able to find something part time as a carryover. I’ve been doing that for a while now and things are going pretty well. But several months in, I have found several opportunities, and they are putting me at a crossroads. This is where I am in the driver’s seat; I've got the power to make a choice for my own life.

After these several months of job searching, I have two paths I can take. Both are good choices, one with a good certainty of giving me full-time work, the other with less certainty, but with the possibility of higher wages.

So here I am, the worker, the one with the choices. I am doing everything I can to gather information on both jobs, things like wages, benefits, hours, etc. and am working on making a decision very soon. In the entire process of determining which path I should choose, it’s caused me to internalize the fact that I as a worker have agency in my own destiny.

Both employers are willing to hire me (the latter if more work is available in due time, I certainly hope so!). I am willing to work as they need me to; that makes me valuable as a prospective employee. I am here because I intentionally worked to get myself to a place where I would have options. And what do you know? Here I am!

My current situation is not a product of some random forces completely outside of my control. It’s not like there is some bogeyman who is out to get me in life, holding me back from work opportunity. The one who is making a difference here is me, by proving my value in the places I was before and in the places I am right now.

It’s just like Dave Ramsey often says: we have the ability to control much of our lives. While we often cannot control what may happen to us, things like accidents and layoffs and economic changes, we can control how we react to them, and then plan a new course of action.

I was one of those people who had an outside force act on me, changing my life circumstance. But rather than just sit around and blame everyone else for the problem, I seized an opportunity and have been aiming for higher things.

The lesson I have to share is this: if you are a worker, a regular employee, you have power over your own life situation. If you don’t like your job, you can work on changing things in that area of your life. If you want to make more money at your job, you can initiate things with your employer to work on that. If you are intentional about what you want, you can make a difference in your own life. I am learning that firsthand, I hope my experience will be encouraging to you.