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Which Job should I take. Heart or head? Gah!

12 replies

lynniep · 22/12/2010 16:28

I was recently made redundant. Which was a bummer. And looking for work when you dont want to go full time is REALLY difficult. In fact for me the only two interviews I got were through the people I know, which proves the old adage really doesnt it. Its not what you know...

I need to work, but I wont work full time because I have two little ones under 4 and I can't bear to put them in childcare all week. Ideally I'd do no more than 3 days, but thats not realistic in my line of work.

Anyway fast forward, I have been offered both jobs. I dont know how but thats another story. Its wonderful. But now I have a dilemma.

The first is my heart job. Its contracting. Loads of money, but could be short term. i.e. 3 months, maybe more. Obviously no perks and no hols but I dont much care. Its further away, a notoriously difficult commute (bad road) and has no onsite parking but is RIGHT in the centre of the city. So the best I could do if I can find a road nearby (v. difficult) would probably be 50 minutes after I've dropped off the kids. If I cant find parking I'll have to pay £21 per day for the privilage. Its my heart job because its an up and coming company, really interesting stuff and new projects and scope for learning lots, its not massive but probably about 60 employees. And they have said I can do 4 slightly shorter days to be able to pick up and drop off the kids in time. (This wont make a difference to the kids, I'll still have to leave them by 8.15 and collect them just before 6)

The second is my head job. It is permanent. There is a pension contribution but no other perks although there may be a bonus each year depending on how they do. I can get door to door in 20 minutes on a good day. Something so close to home is not going to come along again it really isnt. They are also going to let me do part-time - 3 normal days (same dropoff/pick up as the other job) and then a slightly-longer-than-half day i.e will probably be able to get them before 3.30pm. That really appeals to me as I hate the more time with my boys the better. Its a v. small company, less than 20 people, and they are looking for someone to help improve their exisiting processes, but the opportunity for learning is much less. As is the pay. Its still an interesting option, but it wont look as good on my CV in the future.
If I turn it down, and I cant cope with the commute to the other job, I'll be back to square one and I doubt I'll get the chance again.

At this point in my life, there should be no hesitation, I should take the job that is closer to my kids and will give me a bit more time with them, and also have the security. But my heart is saying YOU GOT THE JOB YOU WANT TAKE IT!!!

Gaah. I find myself in the enviable position I didnt think I would get to and I dont know what to do!

Sorry. I think writing it down will help me though even if I dont get a response.

OP posts:
AMumInScotland · 22/12/2010 16:35

I think there's a saying along the lines of "We don't regret the things we do in life nearly as much as we regret the things we wanted and didn't go for" - so, personally, I would go for the "heart" job and take the chance on it. It might lead to a longer term post, and at least is new stuff and interesting and will be good on your CV. At the end of it, even if nothing quite as close and practical as the other job comes up, I'm sure there will be other reasonable jobs to go for at that stage.

lynniep · 22/12/2010 21:08

thanks AMIS. I'm about 75% convinced now :)

OP posts:
atswimtwolengths · 26/12/2010 18:41

I second what AMIS says - go for your heart job.

Is there any way you could pay someone to get to the house for 8am and pick them up from school for the nights you need? I got an A level student from the local college to do this and it worked really well.

Also, if you're getting more money, why not pay for a cleaner to come in each week, so that the time you have free is time for your children?

Congratulations on getting both jobs! I'm dying to know what they are.

violethill · 27/12/2010 11:46


It's what you're interested in, it sounds more exciting than the 'head' one, and it could lead to more contracts or something permanent anyway.

And as atswimtwolenghts says, you could no doubt sort out a childcare arrangement to suit. If its only 3 months initially, look at sorting the childcare as a temporary thing, and then re-think if it turns into permanent

Himalaya · 27/12/2010 11:58

Go for the heart job. You will regret it if you don't.

blueshoes · 27/12/2010 12:09

Will go against the flow. Head job.

I'd go for an easy life whilst children are young. My goal at your stage (if it was me) is just to have a steady income, keep my career and pension on an even keel and gear up at a later stage.

There will be heart jobs in the future - it is like taking a bus. If you miss one, there is always one further on down the line.

Any possibility head job will wait for you whilst you try on the heart job for size. Heart commute sounds horrendous. It would also tear me apart to not be able to devote my full attention to such an interesting role.

Bonsoir · 28/12/2010 20:48

Agree with blueshoes. There are significant downsides to your "heart" job, and significant upsides to your "head" job.

bairn24 · 29/12/2010 13:21

I'm with blueshoes and Bonsoir. Why make your life more difficult - at least while the children are little. I had to turn down my dream job in Nov as it was full time. I have a great part time job which enables me to pick the children up at school. It still eats at me a bit, but I know that there will be other opportunities in the future.

said · 29/12/2010 13:30

Head job, no question. It's not like it sounds terrible. And you can still look for other "heart" jobs whilst knowing you have an income. The pay would have to be outstanding for me to consider a 3 month contract. But the commute would be a huge no-no - quality of life and all that. Don't underestiamte an easy commute

jollyoldstnickschick · 29/12/2010 13:32

Head job definitely.

compo · 29/12/2010 13:32

Could you get a nanny so you don't have to worry about getting the kids to childcare ?
I'd go for the heart job

fairtradefloozy · 06/01/2011 21:06

Heart job. All the way. If its not what you really want, the head job just won't be that interesting. Heart may open more doors in the future.

I had a similar situation but I don't have DC only DH and a holiday habit to support at the moment.

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