The Secret Addiction of Generation Y

by RJ

in Psychology

It’s not drugs, alcohol, or Apple products that we’re addicted to. It’s a lot worse. The major addiction among members of Gen Y is salary.

That so-called security of knowing that a paycheck is coming. Knowing that you can just show up to work for the next two weeks, (even though you really don’t like your job or have dreams of opening up your own business), give a C+ effort, and receive a paycheck.

Are you addicted to you salary? In my best WebMD impersonation, let’s find out.

Symptoms of a Salary Addiction

If you can answer yes to any of the questions below, you may be experiencing a salary addiction:

  1. Do you hate your job but can’t quit because of your dependence on your salary?
  2. Do you live paycheck to paycheck?
  3. Do you not have an emergency fund?
  4. Do you dread going to work?
  5. Are you in debt?
  6. Do you keep telling yourself that you’re going to find a better job?
  7. Have you ever said the following statement, “But I love the benefits”?

3 Cures for a Salary Addiction

If you find yourself with an addiction to salary,  you’re in luck. Salary addiction is curable. Start by…

  1. Saving Money – As long as you’re living paycheck to paycheck, you will be addicted to your salary. You don’t have to save 20% of your income by next month. Start small. Save just 2% of your income in a high interest savings account this month. Next month, try to double your savings.
  2. Learning – The goal is to increase your skills, to increase your value to the marketplace. Once you increase your value, you can work on what you want, where you want, when you want, and you can even name your price. For more on this idea, read the book Linchpin.
  3. Diversifying Your Income - Building multiple steams of income is easier now, then it ever has been. With just ten hours a week, in a few months you can build a profitable online business. Yes, you might have to stay in a Saturday or two, but what’s the alternative?

If you don’t change, neither will your current situation. Chances are you already know what you have to do. Now get to it!


Photo by: DigitalBob8

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PatrickNo Gravatar July 18, 2010 at 1:20 pm

I think this is spot on! I am actually in a contract position now that I absolutely love, the pay is nice and mostly something to keep the wife off my back.

I do think most people are just working to work and that they have no joy in their jobs and that’s why their work is sub-standard. I have had to let some employees go because in this economy if you are not giving 100% then I will find someone who will. This is actually the best time to be in a position to hire and fire people because the lack of jobs has more people competing for work.

RJNo Gravatar July 19, 2010 at 11:05 am

Thanks Patrick for the comment.

I know I have suffered from this addiction in the past. I also know that if I took a quick pole of ten of my closest friends, more than 7 of them want new jobs but can’t quit because of the salary.

You’re right. There are a lot of excellent free agents on the street right now. Which means if you want a great job, you need to stand out from the crowd.

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