Finding a job as a teenager in high school is becoming less common practice. Though saving for college and learning working skills are still valued, the pressure on teens and young adults to maintain high GPAs, participate in sports and clubs, and also have a social life leaves many teens reconsidering entering the workforce during what feels like the prime of their life.
The truth is, having a job while in high school has so many long-term benefits—beyond just the money— that will pay off (no pun intended) in the long run. It’s worth getting that part-time job!
Here are the top 6 benefits of having a job while in high school:
#1. You will have structure
Having a job provides regularity and predictability to your day-to-day life. It helps you develop time-management skills as you balance the various responsibilities that come from work, school, and home.
Jobs also promote motivation and focus. When you have somewhere to be and something to do, you will find that you learn more and achieve more.
#2. You will develop social skills
As a high schooler, you probably have a group of friends that are interested in similar things—maybe you’re on the same track team or you share a music stand in the school band. It’s easy to be friends with people who like the same things you like.
In a work environment, you will develop a deeper level of social and interpersonal skills by working alongside people who are different from you—different in age, background, hobbies, etc.
Through these interactions, you will learn how to listen and follow directions, how to communicate with others, and most importantly how to resolve conflict. Learning to get along with people who are different from you will help you throughout your life—not only in a work environment.
#3. You will earn money
This is the most obvious benefit to having a job, but let’s talk more about what you can learn from the money itself.
Money will give you a sense of freedom and independence. You now have the choice to spend your money on what you want. Will you buy a car, more fast food, or save most of your earnings toward college?
On the flip side, lack of money leads to stress and constantly worrying, “How will I pay for that?” This contributes to mental health problems, which leads to the next point.
#4. You will improve your mental health
Working a job in high school can improve your mental health because you feel successful, productive, and accomplished. You will also feel secure in your ability to pay for fun activities and save for college.
If you have depression, having a job can also help improve your symptoms by providing a sense of purpose, people who depend on you, a place to belong, and responsibilities to follow through on.
To learn more about the interaction between jobs and mental health, read here (link to the other article).
#5. You will engage in self-discovery
Each job you have, no matter where you start, is part of your life-long journey to self-discovery. You will learn what your skills and strengths are, who you like being around, and what things enjoy or do not enjoy doing. This information will be helpful when you look for your next job, and your job after that, each time knowing more about yourself and what you can provide to a company.
You are learning so many things at your job, and you’re getting paid to do it! With each job, you will walk away with experience and a better understanding of yourself.
#6. You will feel meaning in your life
It is important for us to be engaged in something meaningful. Working to provide meaningful interactions for people is part of having a job. Whether it is scanning movie tickets or folding t-shirts, your work has a meaningful impact on someone else’s life. That sense of meaning will increase over time as you move on to your next job and eventually into your career.
Your entry-level job is your stepping stone to get there and discover that deeper sense of meaning.
Each job along the way matters. They are purposeful and meaningful. If you can find that sense of meaning in your work, then you can have a really happy and fulfilling life.
What are the best jobs for high schoolers?
Honestly, there are no best or worst jobs for high schoolers. You can find the benefits of working while in high school mentioned above in any entry-level position as long as you find a job position that fits your schedule. Sure, there will be positions that you like more than others. But the principles remain the same.
Begin your journey to becoming a working professional in any industry by looking for open positions on the Jipe app. Download the app today!