The paychecks you get every month from your main job are often determined by your education backgrounds, your experiences and your overall achievements in your past jobs etc. From my point of view, your salary is dependant on the company's budget and how they allocate salary to their workers so it has nothing to do with your actual self worth.
You can be earning 2 or 3 times lesser than your friends but you can sing very well and get to perform on several big stage or events, and even get big achievements from your singing performances. You could be earning just $1,500 per month from your company as an art-related professional but your artworks is adored by many and you had a huge fanbase when you share them on social media. Maybe you and your colleague are paid the same wage but you seem to do better in all areas of the given job scope.
I finished my highest education at diploma with a very poor results, barely passed....so i did not progress to University education as me, in that point of time, think that formal education is waste of time which up until now i still believe so if i continue to study without a real purpose to benefit me as a whole. After National Service, i went to find a job in the public sector as an executive or you can call it administrator, it was totally unrelated to my Diploma Certification but nonetheless it was still a job, pay is around $1400 after all the CPF deductions, it was on the lower end of Diploma market value but i still take it as i'm desperate for job experience to build my resume.
Every time, during the yearly Chinese New Year gathering, the standard list of questions your relatives will ask you (especially you are single in your 20s) like
- What are you studying right now and in what school?
- What is your current job, your role and your earnings?
- Got girlfriend/boyfriend?
- Getting married soon?
- When have baby?
For me, it was the first three questions that i have to tackle every Chinese New Year, it was tough to say but luckily i got my script written down. I had to explain everytime why i do not want to further my education, telling relatives of my role and my less-than-average earnings, then they will start questioning your life as it feels like they are denting my self-worth. They will also proceed to ask about my dreams or what i do besides work which i will briefly answer but sometimes they will question if i had earned or gain significant achievements from that which i find it annoying. Outside of Chinese New Year gatherings, it is the same situation when catching up with friends but those who knew me long, they wouldn't ask me as they know my plans for my own life.
Since i skip progressing to University education, i spent a lot of time on
- Soul searching
- Learning guitar
- Learning singing
- Learning keyboard
- Building a healthy lifestyle and diet
- Content curation for my blog and social media from my food hunts; music covers; amateur photography; motivating quotes from other great individuals; and my own life experiences.
Although there are times people will doubt my talents and ability based on my social status, corporate status and earnings but as i grow older, i learned to put more of those self-doubt words aside to spend more time cultivating new talents in me. I may be earning way less than my peers, my company may be putting a $2,000 price tag on my head based on my education and past job experiences only but deep down inside, i know i had learned more things and acquire quite a number of skillsets in life which definitely surely surpass my paycheck, maybe a billion dollars if my company is call "Life"😂
*Just a note that, due to high living expenses in Singapore, anyone earning $2.5k or below will likely struggle very much to support family, maybe just yourself is ok.
The point is in life, people or organisations may put price tags on you depending on how they judge you or evaluate your worth to them but all these numeric figures are pointless as it make people senselessly chase for glory, recognition and status. Most importantly, you know what you are good at and continue do what you love.