Part One: Job Pathology
I have had over fifty jobs in my life. I mean that literally. I have almost never reached the two year mark. That should be all anyone needs to know about my feelings towards employment. I don’t like it. I don’t thrive there. Self-employment was no panacea; that only meant that I had fifty bosses.
It’s not the work, I can work. I often enjoy the work. The job, however, becomes increasingly frightening and confusing. Fear of poor performance or failure; social anxiety leading to a mutual distrust of motives; fear of eventual abandonment (being fired); resentment of employer authority and money-dependence; and the resulting emotional exhaustion, and finally; separation. This is over forty years now.
I have no reason to think that it would be any different if I returned to America and tried this route again, notwithstanding my clearer understanding of the psychological mechanics involved.
So here I am. My employers in Thailand all have very low expectations. The subject matter of my jobs is second nature to me. My co-workers and I cannot really communicate; I don’t understand them and they can’t begin to know the first thing about me. There’s no fear of abandonment; I won’t understand the reasons if I get fired so it’s hard to take it personally, plus I can have another job at the same pay within one week. And they’re high-status jobs at good pay to boot. It’s win-win.