Do you want to get out of the rat race? Do you know the reasons why you are stuck in the rat race? People stuck in the rat race don’t even realize it. Most people have accepted this situation as their fate. They have become resigned to living with the situation for the rest of their lives. They are teaching the same belief to their children as well. The bad thing is; they believe that there is no escape. Actually, there is a way out; they just haven’t taken the time to learn about it.
What is the Rat Race?
Have you heard the term “the daily grind”? People use this term to describe the rat race. The rat race is the constant struggle of going to work to pay your bills. Your salary is never enough, you borrow some more, you work harder to pay more. Your hard work makes your company rich. The company doesn’t do anything to help you as you continue to struggle to make ends meet. The struggle only gets more difficult as the days go on. This cycle is similar to a hamster running on his wheel. No matter how fast it runs, it doesn’t go anywhere.
Are You in the Rat Race?
The rat race is where we usually go to after graduation. We start to work and we enjoy working. Earning our own money makes us feel independent. After some time, we see and feel the signs of being stuck in the rat race.
- Devaluation – You work hard for a fixed hourly or daily rate. Extra work is minimally compensated or recognized.
- Repetition – You do the same thing every day and you derive no satisfaction from it.
- Justification – You keep coming up with excuses for staying in your job.
- Boredom – You can’t wait to do something else.
- Disconnection – You don’t feel that your work contributes to any significant difference in other person’s lives or your own.
- Drawing Board Syndrome – Your plans to take a leave from work never pushes thru.
- Lifestyle Creep – Any minimal increase in your compensation/salary leads to lifestyle creep. You end up burdened with more debt.
The vicious cycle of the “daily grind” is what it’s like to be in the rat race. If you can figure out why you are stuck; you are in a good place to start transforming your life.
In his popular book Rich Dad, Poor Dad, Robert Kiyosaki describes the rat race as a situation where individuals “work for the owners of their company, for the government paying taxes, and for the bank paying off mortgage and credit cards.”
Why Are You Stuck in The Rat Race?
Most of us have parents who have been stuck in the rat race. This makes it seem almost impossible to get out of it. The rat race is a cycle that provides a false sense of security. Here are some reasons why you feel secure in your current job; and why you can’t seem to get out of your current lifestyle.
- Your job offers you a monthly income. This provides you the money to support yourself and your family’s needs.
- You want to keep up your government contributions to maximize your retirement pension.
- You’re putting your dream job on the shelf. Your reasons include: (a) it doesn’t fit in with your current job, (b) it will take special training which you don’t have the money or the time to spare at the moment, and (c) it is not guaranteed that you will succeed in it.
- You want to start a business. You need to do and learn many things. Raising funds is necessary to start.
- You want to create extra income and save money to invest. Work prevents you from having extra time or energy for a side job.
- Your work and salary doesn’t leave room for you to volunteer or support a charity, a friend or a loved one.
- You have plans to get a house and/or a car in the future. You have to take care of tuition fees first, loans and other expenses.
These are just some of the most common excuses we tell ourselves which is causing us to stay in the rat race. These thoughts usually interrupt our plans for change.
Fear is Keeping You Stuck
One common factor in these thoughts or excuses is fear. We all fear failure. No one wants to feel rejected. We don’t want to disappoint the expectations of our family and friends. We all fear that things won’t work out in the end.
All these fears had been instilled in us by our parents. Their parents did the same. Fear stems from doubts. Your doubts grow into fears. Fear of what if’s is what paralyses you from doing something to change your situation. The best way to combat doubt is to stop it right at the start by learning.
Get Your Self Unstuck
Most of us adults have lost our curiosity as children. Curiosity is an important component to learning new things. The best way to combat doubt and fear is to educate yourself and your loved ones. Learn what options you have to get yourselves out of the rat race. You don’t always have to stay where the money is. There are other ways to achieve financial freedom.
Start educating yourself by learning from those who have already succeeded. You can start incorporating positive morning habits into your daily routine. Financial literacy is very important to create a better life for yourself and your loved ones. Start managing your finances better. Learn and apply a budgeting system. Tailor your budget to your circumstances. Learn more about how to reboot your finances so you can get out of the rat race.
Updated. First published on Pinoy Smart Living on 2018.08.15.
Feature Image: Original Image by Brian Merrill from Pixabay.