Could U succeed on a job U hated?

If you had to take a high level job you hated, could you succeed?

For instance, you have an obligation to do PhD in math – so you get that PhD. But you really like Social Studies / Issues. Could you suceed in Math?

This is IMHO material, not a Great Debate, so I am moving it.

(As a suggestion: a poster will generally get more considered responses if the title does not look like it has been posted from a young kid’s phone.)

I couldn’t get a PhD in math if my very life depended on it.

What is this “obligation to do P.h.D. in math”? What does that mean, exactly?

I think you’re talking about two different things. I can and have succeeded at a job I hated, by keeping my head down and my nose to the grindstone, and concentrating on why I’m doing it (the money, potential future opportunities, etc.) But if you’re talking about actually obtaining a Ph.D., and pursuing a career in a subject you hate, that’s something entirely different. You could certainly do it with enough effort and sacrifice, but you’d probably end up angry and bitter, and that would have a negative impact on other aspects of your life. You have to look at your ultimate goal, and whether it is worth whatever you’re giving up. I can’t think of any goal, even substantial wealth, that would be worth a lifetime of being miserable in your work.

Given that I live with my parents and they support me financially, I have to comply with their major decisions even at 43.

Now I am an intern – I make $500/month which is my pocket money.

So what can I do now?

I sure could, and I wish I had the opportunity to do so (my current job has no real opportunity to “succeed”). Obviously a job I don’t hate would be much more ideal, but I would happily settle for a job I hate but has room for advancement.

Could you explain a little bit more about how you came to be 43 and living with your parents and financially dependent on them? I take it you now have a Ph.D. in math. Have you been unable to obtain a job other than a $500 internship with that degree?

Dude…this is the thread right here. Do go on about all this.

We are Jewish intelligentsia (I am slightly observant) – our traditions are not the same as American traditions.

Given that the instructor sees how I HATE my job, why should he give me more then the $500/month internship? I also suffer depression in part due to inability to do what I like.

Hey, I’m also Jewish intelligentsia, so I should be able to understand somewhat, although my family has been American for many generations. In fact, as the only person in my immediate family who does not have a professional degree, I may be the perfect person to respond. I still need more context to answer your question. So are you still pursuing your Ph.D., or have you completed it? Have you been living continuously with your parents for your entire life? Were you pursuing your education for the entire time? Did you have a break due to emigration or mental health issues? What exactly was the expectation from your family in terms of your education and future career?

Got my PhD in '08 – was pursuing it the entire time, but slowly due to lack of interest. Lived with my parents and my grandmother all my life.

How about doing what most of we non-intelligensia (or is that some crippling ailment?) did when 20-25 years younger than you - get a job, move out, and start your own life?

What exactly is “Jewish intelligentsia”? I was raised Jewish and I hold several professional degrees and a professional job, but I don’t consider myself as any sort of “Jewish intelligentsia”.

I know lots of Jewish people with advanced degrees (like my wife), and none of them live with their parents. Their folkways are not strange to me, except none of them can cook a latke to save their lives, unless it came out of a box.

Anyway, if you’ve got the chops to get a PhD in math, but you hate it, isn’t there some sort of other career path that involves the same sorts of skills you need to succeed in mathematics, but you don’t actually hate?

Of course, it seems to me the real problem here is depression, so it wouldn’t matter what job you had, you’d hate it because you’re depressed. Not that it’s so easy to fix the depression. But your problem is that you think your problem is that you hate your career path. That’s a problem, but it’s not your real problem. The other problem is using “U” instead of “you”. What are you, Prince?

I am sorry – perhaps this is the term we used in Russia.

Well you have two choices now. You can try to find a job that you enjoy that utilizes your Ph.D., or you can look into some other field. Are you being treated for depression? If your mental state is holding you back, that’s the first thing you need to address, since you won’t be able to make progress in other areas of your life until that is dealt with. How important is parental approval (as opposed to parental financial support) to you? At some point you may have to decide whether your unhappiness at doing what pleases your family is worse than your unhappiness at losing their approval.