I wanted to move to San Francisco with my boyfriend, but we came to Boulder and lived with his parents instead so that I was not carrying the entire financial load while he rebuilt a career in SF, but I still want to spend time in SF and probably will spend some time back and forth. I like having time to be myself.  I don’t know a lot of people here, so I’m trying to focus on the positives here of having a partner.

But I keep wanting to quit my job in marketing because it’s such an obedience culture and I can’t survive in it. What do you think? Any ideas?

Curious what your thoughts are on quiet quitting (or, doing the bare minimum at work).  Is this the new aspiration of the current working generation?

I just read an article of yours about divorce — it was spot on.

I don’t think my wife, who for “no good reason” is pushing for a divorce, would agree.

We have two young kids, and she doesn’t seem to think it will negatively affect them?!

So why are you telling me I’m the one with autism?

I am thinking about ending my marriage. He continuously leaves when it gets hard or challenging by either physically leaving or having more affairs.

I have two daughters and I think it’s worse for them to see a father that can’t commit to his spouse.  I don’t want my daughters to see that as their model and choose partners like that in the future.

My question is how do you know when it is really over? Also, I know the research says two parents together are better but if you are continuously fighting, is it really better?  I don’t want a divorce; I can live with a chronic cheater like Elin Nordgren or Maria Shriver. Also, on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being there when the World Trade Centre fell, how hard is divorce?

Lastly, I just feel like I will never be able to love anyone again. Do I want to keep wasting my life on this guy?

Have you ever written about how to stop yourself from you ruining your own life? Or how to turn it around mid-ruin? Because I’m almost 25, ruining my life, and I’ve gotten to the point of where I kind of hope that someone hits me with their car.

If you have an article about this, you can just say “yes” and I’ll go looking. Until then, I’m going to just eat everything that is bread or contains bread until I feel better.

I have been reading your blog for a while and have found your advice to be incredibly useful.  I recently found one of your posts from 2011 where you talk about relocating to Hermosa Beach.  That post hit very close to home for me because I’m currently going through a similar situation (although I don’t have kids).  I was hoping you might be able to offer a little quick advice.  No one else seems to understand my situation.

I’m a 35 yr old engineer and moved to the San Francisco area in May of this year.  I was laid off from my old job and luckily had an offer from a couple of guys that asked me to help them build a small search startup company.  I make about 150k per year along with equity in the company that would be worth quite a bit in several years.

I don’t mind SF, but I’m from Ohio and have Midwestern values – so San Francisco is a little different than what I’m used to – but it’s tolerable.  My original plan was to move there for 4 years, collect my equity and then leave.  However, recently my old company offered me my old position back at a salary of $108k in Ohio.  That’s a reasonable salary in Ohio, but the job in California is more enjoyable.  It feels good and exciting to help build a company from scratch.

I am very close with my mom and sister  (who both live in Ohio).  My dad passed away 2 years ago from years of medical problems, so we have a close bond due to the trauma we went through.  Needless to say it’s difficult moving away from people I love, especially my mom since she’s getting older and starting to show signs of medical problems.

I don’t want to regret using 4 years for a great career at the expense of any memories I could be making with my family.  Although, it’s difficult to pass up a career opportunity that could be worth several million dollars in a few years time.

This decision has generated a lot of anxiety.  I’ve talked to my therapist as well as others who don’t seem to have a good perspective on the situation.  I feel like you certainly understand the difficulty of this scenario.

If you have any advice or comments, this Midwestern guy in San Francisco would forever be in your debt.  Any help at all would really help me.

Thanks again for all the writing you do, as it’s really helped me in the past.

I work for the state at a VERY relaxed (we can wear whatever- flip flops, tank tops- whatever) The thing is, I don’t have a lot to do. They acknowledge this. I am bored much of the time, which drives me nuts.

My conundrum is- should I interview for another state job (that pays more or an advance, but who knows what the atmosphere is)? It really is a good group I work with and I have worked for the devil himself in a female form in the past.

I’ve only been here 6 months. It could get better or not. I’ve asked for additional duties but none are available. I worry that my job could go away because of that, but when I expressed my concerns, they assure me not. But of course- it is government.


I am an attorney, an ENTJ, and a new mom. I went to Harvard (twice) and worked in intellectually challenging, selective jobs since then. I’m currently in what was my dream job before I had a baby, but I’m miserable.

I miss my daughter. I like her daycare and I’m militant about seeing her as much as possible (every morning and night for dinner/bed), but I long for a richer family life. I also hate feeling bad at my job because I’m no longer single-minded about it. Every day is a blur of demands that I’m unable or unwilling to meet, which is torture for someone driven by achievement and deadlines. (Nearly 100% J on the MBTI.) After she goes to bed I work, eventually give up and pass out, then repeat. I also resent making very little money after turning down well-paying jobs for this more meaningful job.

We could afford for me to stay home if we budget very carefully, are planning more children soon, and would love to have a big family. But I worry that staying home now is is a waste of my education/training/past work, a failure to realize earning potential for my family, and a mistake given that I’m an ENTJ.

Part-time would be great, but, as you’ve noted, part-time versions of my kind of job don’t exist. Running a business would be an option (I love running things and budgeting), but I’m not creative and too risk-averse to be a good entrepreneur. I’m much better at ploughing through via hard work than coming up with an innovative way to make life easier.

Switching legal jobs would likely mean the same schedule and violating a four-year commitment to my current job. I’ve done a lot of research and have no idea what I would do beyond law, although I’m willing to try anything at this point. Including driving a city bus and/or being with my daughter and reading long-form articles.

I also thought I might not actually be an ENTJ given my emotional reaction to becoming a mother, lack of interest (before I began hating my job and paying for quality daycare) in making lots of money, and longstanding desire to do something “meaningful” as well as prestigious. But my ENTJ results have been consistent over ten years. Should I be another mom lawyer who quits? Work for more money? Or is there some third way I haven’t thought of?

Any advice you can offer is greatly appreciated!

P.S. If your son actually wants advice on going to Harvard, I’m happy to help however I can.

I interviewed for two positions at the same time, one internal and one external. It looks now like I am going to receive offers from both, but my preference is for the external position. Right now I have received the external position offer in writing but I need to clear a background check which will take about 2-3 weeks. The hiring manager for the internal position sent me an email today saying he wants to meet sometime in the next week to hash out details.

What is the best way to turn down the internal offer without hurting my relationships in the company? I can’t officially resign till my position until I clear the background check, but I wouldn’t want to waste the hiring manager for the internal position’s time unnecessarily either.

I have been working at a public university for the past three years and was able to switch positions twice to secure better paid and more interesting jobs.  I make good money now and have good benefits. Before that I worked in Europe (where I am from). I tested as an ESTJ and am excellent at organizing, administering processes, and communicating with people.

The problem that I keep having, though, is always the *same* at all jobs that I have ever held (in Europe and the U.S.). Here is how it generally goes:

I start the job, I learn the job, I improve and invent new processes and make things more efficient. Then I get too fast at what I do and my tasks do not fill my day anymore. Then I go to my supervisor and ask for additional tasks. Often these tasks are easy to do, unimportant, and do not fill my time. So most of my days at work I could complete all my tasks during a couple of hours (including responding to emails, etc.) Then I sit there, do busy work, surf the web. It’s super boring, making me depressed and angry. After having had these experiences, I do not know where to go next with my career or which type of position is good for me. I feel like I always played it safe career-wise, but I also don’t know what I could do instead.

My husband is still in school, so I can’t just stop working.

On a – very important – side note: I am also currently in fertility treatment (still pre-IVF, most likely starting IVF in February 2015). I hope I get pregnant soon. I feel like raising a family would make me very happy right now, but with my health condition I can’t count on being able to have a baby  for sure. Being bored at work does not help keeping my mind not circling around my infertility constantly. I do Yoga and acupuncture to ease my mind.

I want to break the cycle I am experiencing at all of my jobs (learn-improve-bored). What do you think I should do?