Finding a job can be an exciting and overwhelming thing for many teens. Their lives are so busy already, that it can be hard trying to fit in a good job on top of everything else. Is it bad not to have a job as a teenager though?
There are many advantages of working, but not having a job as a teenager isn’t bad. Between school and home responsibilities, some teenagers may find it hard to add a job to their schedule. Without work, you focus more on school. However, there are many skills that you learn from working as a teen.
There are different circumstances that can make working as a teen hard. There are positives and negatives to having a job and to not working when you’re a teenager.
Is not having a job bad when you’re a teenager?
Not having a teenager isn’t a bad thing, but research has proved that there are many positive impacts of working as a teen. But the trick is finding a balance between work, study, and personal time. Too little work won’t have positive developmental effects on a teen. Too much work creates lots of stress and negatively impacts the health and well-being of teenagers.
If you are struggling to find a job that will fit in with your school and home life, it can be better to steer away from work as a teenager. It’s also good to try and avoid having high-stress jobs while you’re a teenager.
Working as a teenager is an introduction to the responsibilities of having a job and is a great way to start being more financially independent. You learn about wages and savings which helps you develop good habits before earning an adult wage.
However, not all teenagers have positive experiences with working. It can sometimes be very overwhelming and add lots of extra stress to their lives. This can impact their studying and school grades.
Being young and cheap workers, it’s easy for teenagers to end up with a lot of shifts that leave them little time for study and rest. Many teenagers go to school all day and work after school until 10 or 11 pm. This is not a healthy work, school, and life balance for teens.
With the demand of work in mind and the effect it can have on teenagers, it seems that not having a job as a teen isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Should I feel guilty for not having a job as a teen?
You should not feel guilty for not having a job as a teen. There are many factors that can make having a job a bit too much for you when you’re a teenager. If you think having a job as a teenager will greatly impact your grades, it’s okay to not work and focus on your studies. You might have lots of responsibility in your family and that takes away time for work. This shouldn’t make you feel guilty for not having a job.
For some people, working can be too overwhelming on top of their studies. In this case, it’s important for teenagers to look after their mental health and wellbeing. If you’re putting your health first, you should not feel guilty about not having a job as a teenager.
But you should always stay open to good opportunities that can give you experience. Jobs give you a chance to start building your working skills and networks. A lot of places value the training you get from working as a teenager.
There are also times when working might be better for you than school. If you find school quite hard, you could look into picking up a trade. This way you combine what you’re learning with work while you’re a teenager.
How much time should a teen commit to a part-time job?
For teens at school, it is recommended that during the school term they don’t work more than 12-16 hours a week. There are guidelines and laws in different areas about the amount of time children can work. For teenagers that are 15 and older, 6-8 hours of work a day is the maximum for outside of the school term.
You can communicate with your employer about your work hours, especially when it comes to balancing work and study. As a teenager, you shouldn’t work later than 10 pm or before 6 am while you are studying.
During school holidays, the maximum number of hours a teenager should work is 30 hours a week.
For teenagers that work in trades, these hours can be very different. A lot of your learning happens on the job, so you will work more often.
If you start university towards the end of your teenage years, the hours of work for a university student to commit to change again.
Is getting a job worth it as a teenager?
Getting a job can be very much worth it as a teenager because you start your savings and build your work experience. Having your own money gives you a bit more freedom to buy your own things and manage your spending habits. It’s a good way to learn about how the economy works.
If you work as a teenager, you can start advancing your career sooner because of your work experience. There are many skills from your first job that employers look for when hiring you as you get older. Without this experience, it can be hard to find a job when you first leave high school.
Having a job as a teenager can also boost your confidence and self-worth as you work hard for your own money. The independence and responsibility you gain from working as a teen can really help you grow.
As we mentioned, some teens gain more from working than from their academic studies. If this is the case, you might be considering dropping out. But you should also be thinking about the benefits of working and possibly picking up a trade.
What types of jobs should teenagers get?
Teenagers should look for jobs that offer weekend and afternoon work to balance school, study, work, and personal time. Most jobs that teenagers get don’t need any prior experience and you learn everything during your training period. The most common job that a teenager gets is working in the fast-food industry.
Other common jobs that teenagers get include:
- Car Wash Attendant
- Customer Service
- Dog Walker
- Food Server
- Library Assistant
- Pet Sitter
- Swim Instructor
Teens who are starting to focus more on a trade are likely to have an apprenticeship and a workplace attached to that. More and more teens are starting to look for work in the construction industry. Once they finish their apprenticeship, they can connect with a labour hire company to keep building on their experience.
There are positives and negatives to having a job as a teenager. There are also positives and negatives of not working as a teenager. But there are lots of easy entry-level jobs where you start building your work experience, which is what we recommend for you to do.