Music Mondays – I’m Too Sexy

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I’m Too Sexy

I’m going to date myself, but I was a freshman in high school when Right Said Fred released the song, I’m Too Sexy, mocking the modeling industry and anyone who thinks they are too cool or too sexy to do something. As many of you know, I’m a big fan of financial sexiness and part of getting financially sexy is understanding that you are never too sexy or too cool for the work it takes to get there.

I’ve had a few meetings recently with clients where I asked if they could make extra money and for many of them, they felt too cool or too sexy for the job or side hustle that would make them money. I understand as a 28 year old professional with a masters degree that babysitting is not your ideal weekend activity; however, if you’re up to your eyeballs in debt or behind in your savings, I hate to break it to you, but you’re not too sexy for just about any side hustle.

I Thought I Was Too Sexy

The summer before my junior year of college, I wanted to live in my college town with a boyfriend and the only way I could afford to live there was to get a job as my dad refused to pay for my living situation (he wasn’t a fan of supporting my “living in sin”). This need led to my cashier job at Best Buy.

As a future investment banker, I didn’t fit the mold for cashiers at Best Buy, but I needed the money and they paid me well. I ended up working for Best Buy the last two years of college and many days I felt too sexy to wear the Best Buy blue golf shirt and khaki pants; however, that job not only paid for my social life but it also paid for a car and helped me get my first job out of college.

Turns out that investment banks were impressed with someone who worked over 30 hours a week and still maintained a competitive GPA. It didn’t matter that I wore a blue shirt and khakis while working.

My job at Best Buy wasn’t the only one that I felt too sexy or overqualified to work, but money is money and we don’t always get to handpick the ways that we can make money.

We Can’t Always Be Sexy

Rather than stay unemployed, the brother of a friend of mine got a job at a fast food restaurant in a neighborhood near him. Whenever people he knows come in, he feels a sense of embarrassment that in my mind is unnecessary. I think it would be far more embarrassing to collect an unemployment check rather than get out of bed everyday and work for your money.

Last week on my podcast, I talked to Tonya Rapley from My Fab Finance who lamented about a cultural disdain for being a member of the working class, and I can’t understand where this comes from. From my vantage point, there is no better or sexier person than someone who is willing to work their butt off to support their family and achieve their dreams.

If you’re someone who needs to fill in the gaps between your financial dreams and your financial reality, beware of thinking that you’re too sexy for any money making opportunity. Despite the initial disdain my clients have for their possible side hustles, once they start working them, they quickly get excited about the opportunities they present.

My Clients Are Not Too Sexy

My clients who side hustle and check their egos at the door, not only achieve their financial goals faster but also have fun along the way. For many of them, the side hustle income is their “fun” money. It might not be fun to work in the pet store on the weekends or wipe some kids behind, but it feels better when they know the work assures them something fun in their future.

Just last week, one of my clients took on a new babysitting opportunity. When I asked her how she felt about the work that she initially scoffed, she replied, “This job just got me closer to my Italian vacation.”

The path to financial sexiness doesn’t always come with sexy jobs, but to me, there is nothing sexier than honest work that helps you achieve your life goals. Don’t miss out on opportunities to better yourself financially by thinking that any job is beneath you. Don’t say “I’m too sexy” say “When can I get started?”

Have you ever worked a job that you felt too sexy or overqualified to work? Would you work a job that you felt was beneath you to make your financial goals a reality?

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Shannon is a financial planner who left a “traditional” financial services firm to start her own company, The Financial Gym, because she felt traditional financial services firms did not have the tools or resources to help people in their 20s and 30s who are starting out and trying to build assets while also managing debt. She realized that the key to long-term personal financial success is a commitment to financial fitness and making smart financial choices. Through her blog, Financially Blonde, her book, Train Your Way To Financial Fitness, her podcast, Martinis and Your Money and The Financial Gym, Shannon is committed to making financial fitness fun, easy and accessible for everyone.

31 COMMENTS

  1. So many times, Shannon! I started working at 14. And those jobs included dishwasher, dry cleaning clerk, food prep for an Italian restaurant, bus person, hostess, and server. I did most of those through high school and college. And then when I moved to Nashville – server and selling beer at Titans stadium. I was earning less than $30K for my first few years after college. So I worked a few side jobs.

  2. I can’t relate much to doing a side gig I don’t love.. I once had a position changed on my from when I hired into a place to when I started working and I ended up working in the food service area in the kitchen.. I stayed with it for about 6 months but quit when I was told I couldn’t have spring break off to go work a job that paid significantly more than working there….

    My boss at the told me I was making a huge mistake and would regret losing the job there.. LOL.. I seriously regret losing a minimum wage kitchen job. I will say back then I was not focused on saving money at all and I was working 3 part time jobs while in school to pay for my car and other needs that I was handling myself. (My parents were helping out with tuition at the time and everything else was my responsibility)

    Since that time.. I take I side hustles that I love doing and the pay is just a bonus to go with it.

    • Yes, the team at Best Buy actually wanted me to go into management training and couldn’t understand why I didn’t stick around after graduation. I am fortunate to get to work side hustles I like now as well but I wouldn’t be afraid to go back to the kitchen if I needed to.

  3. I was a Senior in high school when this came out, so I feel really old, lol. 🙂 Anyway, I learned early on in my debt repayment that non-sexy jobs would be one of the main ways to kill my debt. As long as it helps you meet a goal, and it’s legal, I say go for it. I’d much rather have my goal, even if it means swallowing my pride at the outset.

  4. The best example I have of this is a friend who was unemployed for months but refused to get “any” job. He laughed at my idea of picking up a job delivering pizzas to bring in cash while he job searched. If he didn’t live at home and had bills to pay I think he’d have a different perspective (half of me wish he DID have to deal with finding an income source ASAP).

  5. I think we all have had those jobs, where we feel a bit out of comfort or too sexy. I think people need to just bite the bullet and get it done. I rather have a job then not, which can lead to other bigger issues.

  6. I’m not going to say how I old I was when that song came out, but I wasn’t in high school. Or college! 🙂 I definitely know people who thought they were “too sexy” to take on extra work or jobs that could have tremendously helped them out financially. And at times, it can be a painful pill to swallow when you need to take a step back or side job when you thought you should be “set” but like your client so smartly said, “This job just got me closer to my Italian vacation.” It’s understanding priorities and willingness to do what needs to be done to achieve goals, even if the actions are not sexy.

    • Yes, sometimes we have to give our clients perspective or at least the right perspective. It’s easy to poopoo something that doesn’t sound sexy but if you frame it with something that is sexy, it definitely changes the dynamic.

  7. It’s nice that for the time being, I get to have a pretty sexy job, but I’ve worked just about every job that there is to work (except being a janitor, now that I think about it). Finding someone who will trust you with adding value to their company is no easy feat which is why I think that every kind of work is dignified work. It’s also the reason I try to sincerely thank those who are not earning as much as they are probably worth.

  8. I felt a bit unsexy working at the container store when I’d see friends come in who were like WTF? But I got past it. That job didn’t work out for other reasons. But I have cleaned my friend’s apartment which is NASTY and his toilet…don’t even get me started. But I didn’t care because money is money. I would do whatever it takes (legally) to stay afloat.

    • Ha! I didn’t know you worked at the Container Store?! I always felt a little odd when I checked my college friends out at Best Buy. I thought it must be nice to have extra money to buy 10 CDs when I am working to ring you up for the CDs.

  9. Yes! Did it suck to have a law degree and be working to retail jobs, yes, but it was paycheck and it got me through until I did find a full time job in a terrible economy.

    • Ha! Yes, I am sure you didn’t envision retail while you were studying Torts. I have a client who has her law degree and still nannies to help pay off her loans. I have so much respect for the work ethic and commitment to goals.

  10. YES! If I thought I was too good for my side hustles, I’d not be where I am today. Yes, it’s not ideal, but do what you have to. It could lead to something else, and at least you are working.

  11. “I think it would be far more embarrassing to collect an unemployment check rather than get out of bed everyday and work for your money.”

    Absolutely! I’m lucky enough at this point in time not to have to do too many unsexy jobs, but if the situation changed, I’d do whatever it took to stay afloat.

  12. Lots of memories were coming back when I saw the music video I’m Too Sexy. I have never been a job where I felt I’m too sexy as I always try to apply for a most challenging job. But, I think in every job, we have to feel sexy to make it easier and to learn from every experience.

  13. When I was going to law school part time in the evening and working full time during the day, I would kind of feel that way. I’m a future lawyer right! But working that job helped me limit the amount of student loans I took and paid for my daily expenses…plus I was able to start saving in my retirement plans. The compounding wasn’t delayed like many of my peers who went to school full time.

  14. After losing my apartment manager job and having to depend on my mom (who had moved to my city to live with me), I worked part-time — all I could physically manage — the front desk at a gym. I had to be there at 6 a.m., but the gym was just around the corner from the apartment. So I woke up at 5:30, took a quick shower, grabbed a breakfast bar and stumbled over, bleary-eyed, and opened up. Then just made sure people scanned their card and answered questions or sent people over to get signed up with the gym.

    Meanwhile my mom, a veteran journalist of nearly 2 decades, worked the daycare starting around 8 a.m. It was exhausting, and she only did it part-time. But neither of us felt the work was beneath us. It’s what we could physically manage at the time.

    In the end, neither of us could sustain the work, but that was a physical issue for me (disabled) and my mom had just left my dad and wasn’t in a great emotional place. If we could have kept it up — even at minimum wage — we would have. Because we needed the money.

    Also, some of your clients who don’t want to babysit should be reminded that they can choose to avoid jobs with infants if they really want but also an adult babysitter can make quite good money. My mom was getting $15 an hour about 7 years ago. And most babysitting takes place at night, so the kids are asleep at least a couple of hours after you get there.

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