Like many people, since Christmas I have been glued to the couch engrossed in a boxset. This year it’s Friends, and I’m noticing that one of the biggest themes running through the series’ is the characters' attitudes and experiences with work. The trials and tribulations they go through are representative of all sorts of actual issues people have to go through with their own real life careers. Either that or they just feel real because I have watched over 100 episodes since Christmas and now I don’t know what’s real anymore!
Poor Chandler Bing in his dead end processing job, constantly trying to chase up the W.E.E.N.U.S. Chandler represents people all over the world who don’t really know what they want to do, take a temporary office job and end up staying for years. But he also goes to show that there’s light at the end of the tunnel, when he successfully pursues his advertising dream late into his career.
Chandler says: There is hope!
The restaurant game is a tough one, but luckily Monica is a tough one too and she is a classic example of hard work paying off. Sticking out dead end jobs, including in a themed diner with costumes and bar dancing, it all pays off when she lands her dream job as a head chef.
Monica says: Keep going, it’ll be worth it in the end!
Rachel is the character I feel closest to because of her waitressing years which can feel like the most hopeless in the world, especially when you just can’t seem to break into the career you want to (and you can't get to grips with serving to save your life). However, she’s an example of how eventually opportunities will come along and when they do you need to grab them with both hands.
Rachel says: Although it feels like it will never happen, it will!
Acting is not a career for the faint hearted but it’s something which Joey takes in his stride and he shows that if you can put up with sometimes ridiculous day jobs (shopping mall elf, Hombre aftershave sprayer, Christmas tree salesman) and deal with constant rejection, then fame and fortune really can come your way.
Joey says: Don’t listen to the haters, chase your dream!
Pheobe was always a character which I envied as she had a skilled job as a masseuse which she enjoyed and was able to be self -employed when she needed to be. She is also able to be a part time singer songwriter and treat the world to the joys of 'Smelly cat'.
Pheobe says; Enjoy your work and enjoy your life!
Ross is an example of hard work in the field of academia paying off, with a great job, great money and of course working with dinosaurs every day, which is everyone’s dream isn’t it? You’re set for life, as long as you don’t get yourself fired over a sandwich.
Ross says: Childhood passions really can become adult careers!
So all these many (many) hours I have spent watching Friends these past few weeks haven’t been wasted, they have offered me valuable careers advice instead! I highly recommend you do the same.