So I’m facing a bit of a conundrum. At work, the powers-that-be recently posted a full-time job opening for what is essentially the job I’m doing now: stocking product in the (early) morning and working the sales floor in the afternoon. My question is this: do I apply to it?

This whole “temporary” job position I’m in has been an interesting exercise in doublethink. On the one hand, I definitely don’t want to make working retail my career. On the other hand, I want do do what I can to make the best of a less-than-ideal situation. So what does one do?

I could apply for the full time position. It would mean better benefits, and working a guaranteed 40 hours a week. The hours I’ve gotten used to would become normal; I’d have to continue going to bed and waking up extremely early. The early shift wouldn’t be something I fell into, but something that I deliberately chose for myself. Pros: more money. Cons: early mornings. Besides, I’m not even sure what my chances of getting the job would be; full time positions are somewhat coveted, and I don’t have anything resembling seniority amongst the people who are likely to apply.

And if I don’t apply? Well, it feels like it would be a missed opportunity, even if it’s not a direction I want to take my career. In a way, I’d be committing myself to retail even more. I’d have to work 40 hours a week, which means my occasional half days would be a thing of the past, which means it would be even harder to find (or even look for) a better job. Plus, my boss has been talking about how they want to move me onto the sales floor (where I’m supposed to be) more. Lack of seniority will kick in, which means I’m likely to be relegated to late or closing shifts. Given that I have heavy and fencing practices weekly, that would put a serious crimp in my social and extracurricular activities (in addition to having to work weekends like I already do).

Where does the doublethink come into play? Well, I want to present the appearance of a hard-working, motivated go-getter for the benefit of my supervisors, so that I can get more (and maybe better) hours. But in a way that’s just a role I’m playing, a mask I’m presenting. In reality, I don’t want to stay in retail for any considerable length of time. In fact, I often find myself thinking about my current job (that I’ve had for a little under 2 years) as a transient thing, a bad dream I’m due to wake up from any moment now. As such, I’ve worked to improve my position (hooray for no longer pushing carts!), but I don’t want to get too committed. I guess I’m worried that my admittedly somewhat false pretenses will be found out, or I’ll find myself a few years down the road in a place I don’t want to be.

Who knows. I guess I’m just so used to trying to better my situation I feel kinda weird letting an opportunity that would ostensibly do so slip by. But is it really what I want? Is there a risk to making the “quick fix” too stable? Would I even be happy being at work a full 40 hours a week? Am I even using the time I’m not there currently with any modicum of productivity? Would the monetary gain be worth the philosophical price? Do I just let the listing close, the opportunity slip by, or do I make a conscious decision to not apply? Do I show up to the interview dressed as Deadpool in a tutu and sing “I Feel Pretty” at the top of my lungs?

Who knows.

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