Ever since I quit my barista job I have become much happier. I was so focused on getting money to help pay rent and save up for my goals, that I became stressed. I was starting to become a person I wasn’t happy with. I was over worked, tired all the time, I didn’t work out, and I didn’t sleep well. Now I am the opposite. I sleep, and work out, and eat better all because I am not pissed off at the world. Why should a job that should have been so fun, stress me out so much? Well the honest answer is, it shouldn’t, and I am way too young to be tied down to a job that makes me feel like a zombie.
I learned a valuable lesson, I need to put myself first. At this point in my life I should be the center of my own life, and I need to do what makes me happy. I learned that it is okay to have a day to yourself for a mental break. Mental health is just as important as physical health and if your job doesn’t understand that, get out quick. I was becoming so overwhelmed, I didn’t want to do anything, I was dealing with so much at work that I was irritated constantly. I was not me.
I’m not saying I stopped paying rent or stopped helping around the house, I didn’t even give up on saving for my goals, but I am saying that I am not focused on work right now. I am focused on me, on my happiness, on my overall health, and I think this is exactly what I should be focusing on in life. Actually, I think all 20-year old’s’ should take a break and focus on themselves. I wish someone told me to find a job I can be happy with, save for my goals, and still be able to work on myself, it would have made an enormous difference.
Most people tell me to work hard and make as much as you can so you can live better later. Well that may work for you, but that doesn’t work for me. I would rather be happy, physically and mentally healthy, than work myself to death. In twenty years, it will still be the same answer. I want to be healthy not rich. This doesn’t mean I don’t ever want to work again, I do, I want to save for my goals, and have enough money to live nicely, but I think health and happiness should come first, and everything else should come second.
Let me ask you a question. If you worked every day of your life, and have three hundred thousand in your bank account, but you die because you didn’t take care of yourself, what was the point? Sure, you can leave it all to your family, but they probably wish they had you and not the money, they probably wished you would have taken care of yourself at the end of it all.
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Today I had a difficult day, a terrible day. I found out a lot of things that I didn’t want to. I learned sometimes being an adult isn’t so much fun. So instead of focusing on the bad, which is easy to do, I wanted to write about things that make me happy. Things that make me smile just thinking about them. This is my list, everything on it means a lot to me, what are some things that make you happy?
1. Hearing my mom read bed time stories. Yes, I’m 21 and I still love listening to my mom read kids stories to my sister. It brings back the best memories, her voice is soothing.
2. The smell of fresh strawberries. The moment I walk into whole foods and I can smell the ripe strawberries, it reminds me of summer and happiness.
3. My mom’s homemade cinnamon rolls. Gluten-Free and to die for.
4. My boss’s peach cobbler, only had it once and dream about it. Now I buy peach yogurt in hopes it will be just as good. (it’s not)
5. The sound of rain hitting chimes.
6. My sisters smile. Her smile hits her bright green eyes, and she always has mischief in them. I always can tell when she is truly happy, there is no hiding it.
7. The smell of nutmeg, it reminds me of my great grandma brown.
8. The smell of clothes straight from the dryer. It smells like home.
9. Seeing cherry trees blossom and turn into cherries. I used to always pick cherries with my grandma, I would eat the super bitter ones and make a face. She’d tell me they weren’t ripe yet.
10. Bubble gum. My dad has a dog named Athena, I used to give her walks, she somehow always found bubble gum to chew on. Every. Single Time.
11. Chapstick. I used to put Chapstick on my dogs’ lips because I thought they were chapped. Now both dogs are addicted to Chapstick and steal the whole stick any time it’s in the house. (sorry mom, I’m the reason you can’t have anything nice.)
Sometimes it’s good to take a minute and appreciate the small things in life. The stuff that seems unimportant but holds great meaning to you. I smile every time I think of my mom reading stories and the strange dog who loves bubble gum. In truth this post made me feel a lot better, and I hope you get a small kick out of it too.
People seem to think being a barista is easy, but those people are wrong. There is no easy job, you will always have to deal with weird, angry people, you will always have to put in effort, and you will always have someone who is upset with you. So in reality being a barista, working at McDonalds, working at a library, or being a successful president of a company, are all hard jobs. All are equally shitty, and all will pay you less than you deserve. Adulthood sucks.
Being a Barista is mentally and physically demanding. Most people wouldn’t think being a barista is a very mental job, but in reality it is, and it’s hard. Every week I have to go through orders and figure out how much we are going to sell, I have to lead people into doing their best. Someone is always mad at me, or wants me to lead others a certain way and I have to figure out what is best for each individual person. I have to remain insanely calm even when there is pressure. The only people who can work with the public have extremely tough skin, and won’t let anything effect their job performance. People eventually take a toll on you.
My job is also super physical, which explains why my feet are always killing me at the end of the night. I walk at least six miles at work every day. I lift heavy boxes, and I run back and forth as fast as I can, all while keeping a smile on my face and giving the best service I can.
So after explaining my job, here are the not so secret, secrets, of a pissy barista:
- Every time you order a Frappuccino my soul dies a little.
- Your iced Cappuccino is a waste of my milk.
- I will charge you for the extra caramel sauce because the tube is more than my checks.
- I will never split up drinks for you, and I will give you the cheapest, smallest cup.
- I will secretly always side with my coworkers, because they are usually right, and you’re wrong.
- When I got home, I get drunk, and reenact the rude customers I had that day.
- We all laugh about the horrible customers in the back.
- If you don’t know your own drink order, I make what I think you will like.
- That one penny you left me as a tip, is probably long gone on the floor,
- If you repeat something more than twice, you may or may not be getting the opposite of what you asked for.
- I really don’t care if you’re entire day is “ruined” because of my actions. I just pretend like I care.
- It is my job to be super happy, and upsell you on everything. So don’t you dare be mean to me if I am doing my job.
- My bosses make more fun of the bad customers than I do. So you probably won’t want to talk to my managers.
All this being said, next time you go get coffee at your local shop keep these things in mind. Don’t be rude when the baristas upsell you, and don’t pity them because of their job. Being a barista in a busy coffee shop has taught me more skills, and life lessons than any other job I have ever had. It is by far the hardest and most rewarding job.