Picture it—a good salary, flexible hours and minimal stress… Sounds like a dream job, doesn’t it? These are the characteristics of what TikTok has branded the “lazy girl job.” The term, first coined by influencer Gabrielle Judge, is seen as the antithesis of the “rise and grind” culture that for many years, meant sacrificing a work-life balance for long hours climbing the career ladder. And while the perks of a lazy girl job sound amazing, is there a price to be paid for having one? And, looking at the bigger picture, how is the term impacting the image people have of a woman’s role in the workforce?
WHAT EXACTLY IS A “LAZY GIRL JOB?”
“A lazy girl job is one where the job doesn’t consume your whole life, it’s more of a means to an end where you have your balance, you’re not stressed, you’re there for a paycheck and it also allows you to have a relaxed lifestyle that fits what you imagined for yourself,” says Madeline Mann, career strategist and CEO of Self Made Millennial.
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So where should a gal seeking out a lazy girl job be looking? As expected, roles offering a remote option are often your best bet, as opposed to a position where you’d absolutely have to show up in person, say, for example something in the medical field, says Mann. She adds that internal facing jobs, where you aren’t under the pressure of always having to interact with clients and customers or make sales, can also be good options. “Looking for a position that is remote and internal is a good recipe for a lazy girl job,” says Mann.
A CUSHY POSITION COULD COME AT A COST
Sure, long lunches, working from anywhere you please and regularly clocking out early to enjoy extended weekends are perks any employee would love to have, but at what cost do they come? According to career coach Elizabeth Pearson, pursuing a lazy girl job could mean missing out on a bigger opportunity—and that’s feeling a deep connection and passion for your career. “Too quickly in our society, we’ve written off work as a means to an end,” says Pearson. “I look at it from a different lens; you get to, hopefully, do something you feel impassioned about all day long.”
Pearson says if you’re stuck and feeling tempted to ditch your passion to pursue a lazy girl job, you should challenge yourself to identify a position that feels exciting. This could be a job in a totally different industry, or a friends’ job that you’ve always been envious of. “Follow your jealousy a little bit,” suggests Pearson. And what if you’re already in a field you love, but being on the edge of burnout has become too much to bear? Pearson says it’s never too late to renegotiate the terms of your employment and let your boss know what you’ve been doing has become unsustainable. Asking to change your hours, work from home certain days of the week, or lighten your workload are all reasonable requests. “We have to be OK with advocating for ourselves,” she says. “After all, the worst they can say is ‘no’.”
WHO YOU CALLING LAZY?
Not only could a “lazy girl job” thwart progress toward a fulfilling, meaningful career, experts also say it’s harming the image people have of women in the workforce in general. Pearson says the lazy girl job trend has misbranded certain lines of work (think social media managers, marketing associates, or customer service representatives) as lower status jobs. “It’s these things that are actually integral to a company’s productivity, but we are downgrading them as bare minimum jobs.”
Career advisor Alison Cheston agrees, and points out that many of the roles falling under the lazy girl job moniker were once in-office positions that pre-pandemic, wouldn’t be considered cushy. “Since Covid, so many people have been able to reclaim their lives due to a more flexible in-office schedule,” says Cheston. “We know Covid disproportionately impacted women with young children—so why are we now belittling jobs that gave people some of their life back?”
THE BOTTOM LINE
At the end of the day, most of us are searching for that elusive, perfect balance of a career we’re passionate about and enough time to do the things we enjoy. But, as Pearson points out, “you only need balance when you’re off course.” Getting on a “course” that works for you might not mean pursuing a lazy girl job. It could actually mean looking at the broader picture and at bigger opportunities for yourself and your career. “It might be time to make a big change,” says Pearson. “That doesn’t mean downshifting. It probably means the opposite, and stepping to the forefront.”
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