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Dilemma of the Young Professional…

On a regular basis, I consistently have a brutal debate with my boyfriend discussing the topic of young professionals.

My side

You need to start as young as possible to work as hard as possible to retire as early as possible.

I have seen my parents retire young.  They were incredibly thankful that they started their careers at a young age so that they could enjoy an early retirement.  THAT’S WHAT I WANT! I am young, I have a college education, I am pursuing my Master’s degree, I should be working full time to fulfill the reasons I received my education.  I want to start my career as young as possible in order to tackle as many opportunities as I can.

His side

We are only young once – Live a little!

He is a firm believer that now is the time to live our life as young enabled healthy adolescents.  Now is the best time to backpack through a foreign country, cliff dive in Costa Rica before our back goes out, or climb mountains while our health is in our prime. Save the cubicle and 40+ work weeks for later in life.  A full time career can come later in life.   Neither one of us ever wins the debate, we both come up with valid arguments to support our opinions.  I see validity to his arguments, however I truly believe that my arguments are more realistic.  Just sayin…

7 responses »

  1. Ashley, I have to say I agree with you on this one. Don’t get me wrong, I wish I could travel and do amazing things like that, but I wouldn’t be able to afford if I wasn’t working full-time. I probably couldn’t even afford the plane ticket to Costa Rica at this point in my life. And trust me, after 25-30 years of working, you’ll be burnt out and wish you had started sooner. -Eric

    • Eric, I’m glad you agree with me! All the advice I’ve received from my parents and mentors highly recommend starting as soon as possible to avoid being stuck working at 65+ (against my will, of course). Hopefully I don’t regret taking the FT-work-right-after-college road.

      Thanks for the comment, Eric!


  2. I agree with you Ashley as well. Many people tend to forget their long term goals, and only realize their mistakes too late in life. It also helps that my wife and I share the same views when it comes to our long term goals. That way there isn’t as much conflict when planning the major things we do.

    Although I could also say that there can be a balance between the two. We still do go on trips, but not as frequently and only as long as they don’t impact our long term goals.

    • Gian- you brought up some great points I didn’t mention in my little “rant.” Sharing long term goals and a healthy balance of work and play are essential in managing a FT work load. Thank you for those observations, and thanks for the comment, G 🙂


  3. Ashley, I think I would get along with your boyfriend just fine. I believe its okay to be spontaneously responsible (an oxymoron?) I think its through the submission to these whims that we learn most about ourselves and that the image of “success” is eroding the important fact that we are the youngest we’ll ever be and at the end of the day you cant take it with ya.

    • Matt – You sounded just like him in that comment! But I agree, which is why it’s such a dilemma. We are only young once and we need to take full advantage of that, but at the same time when do we develop ourselves professionally? Thanks for the comment, Matt!

  4. Pingback: Budget? | Ashley Cray

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