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Video: The Co-Existence of Machines And Workers in The Near Future

"In the 21st century, you are not ever going to be done learning and adapting and figuring out how you fit into the new paradigm," said Oates

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Robots
How Do Workers Compete With Machines In the Near Future? Pixabay

Many of today’s jobs did not exist 10 years ago. And a decade from now, technology’s march will likely replace many jobs of today in future.

Jennail Chavez, 25, said it was a mid-life crisis that brought her to a noisy classroom where sounds of hammering and sawing surrounded her. She was working at a warehouse and wanted to do something more rewarding. She found her answer back at school. After completing a two-year program at the Los Angles Trade Technical College, Chavez plans to be a general contractor. As a person who loves working with her hands, choosing a career in a male-dominated profession did not intimidate her.

“I need a trade to match my personality and why not come into construction,” said Chavez.

But Chavez realized what she is learning to do may soon be replaced by machines.

“I actually came across a 3-D printer that actually built houses, and I was like ‘no, I’m actually in the industry to start building houses. What am I going to do?”

“Re-skilling is an essential part of so much of the economy right now,” said Laurence Frank, president of the Los Angeles Trade Technical College. He said workers constantly have to learn new skills to keep up with advancing technology.

Jacob Portillo is well aware of the need to keep up. He recently graduated from a program that trained him to work on diesel trucks, and already has had to adapt to changes in brake systems.

“Every year that passes by it evolves into something different, something new. Just keep learning and keep evolving along with the field,” Portillo said, who has found a good paying job working on trucks.

Jobs that require critical thinking will be hard to replace with robots. “Plumbers, people that work as electricians, where there has to be constant problem solving, constant decision making – those jobs are pretty secure,” Frank said.

Soft skills such as communication, time management and teamwork will also help workers stay employed in the future.

“So, are we teaching people to be good communicators? Are we teaching people to work in teams? At secondary or post-secondary level? Are we teaching people to synthesize and analyze,” asked Jane Oates, president of Working Nation, a campaign to help American workers prepare for future jobs.

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Oates said many high schools and universities in the United States are not keeping up with the pace of technology to prepare students. “They’re teaching things that are antiquated because that’s what they have the professors to do,” Oates said, suggesting schools hire faculty from industry and develop apprenticeships with industry professionals.

“In the 21st century, you are not ever going to be done learning and adapting and figuring out how you fit into the new paradigm,” said Oates.

After graduating from trade school, Jennail Chavez said she plans on working for a few years before returning to school to learn how to work with electric and solar power. (VOA)

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Rather than Thinking about Future, Working People Need to Live in Present and Avoid Mulling Too Much

Undoubtedly problems generated from economic slowdown lead to a number of mental health issues

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Future, Working people, Present
The slowdown has already claimed the livelihood of lakhs of people. Pixabay

As economic slowdown is often linked to anxiety and depression, which may also become a reason for suicide, experts suggest that rather than thinking about the future, working people need to live in the present and avoid mulling too much over a distressing situation to cope with stress.

India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate slipped to 5 per cent in the first quarter (April-June) the current financial year, the lowest in over six years. The slowdown has already claimed the livelihood of lakhs of people.

“Undoubtedly problems generated from economic slowdown lead to a number of mental health issues. One has to understand that these problems are also like any other problems of life we all have to deal with. Mulling over such issues never gives a solution, rather it will make it worse,” Neha Dutt, Psychologist at Dharamshila Narayana Superspecialty Hospital in New Delhi, told IANS.

“Look for possible alternatives amid the crisis that you are facing. Make alternative plans in life and remember if plan A did not work, try plan B. As nothing is permanent in life, constantly remind yourself that this phase is also temporary. Taking action and working towards that is important,” Dutt suggested.

Future, Working people, Present
As economic slowdown is often linked to anxiety and depression, which may also become a reason for suicide, experts suggest that rather than thinking about the future, working people need to live in the present and avoid mulling too much. Pixabay

Data from National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) suggest that 133,623 suicides were recorded in India in 2015. Fifteen suicides took place every one hour during that year.

The data revealed that 70 per cent of the victims of suicide were earning an income of less than Rs 1 lakh a year during 2015.

Gurugram’s Paras Hospital has recently seen a spike in the visit of “corporate people” who have the fear of losing their jobs because of this slowdown, according to Preeti Singh, Senior Consultant Clinical Psychologist & Behavioural Expert at the hospital.

It is not only hampering their sleep but also leading to overthinking, she said.

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Because of the economic slowdown, some people are getting into entrepreneurial roles, which means one needs to set up everything on their own with limited people, she said.

“Though it looks exciting in the beginning, in the long run one might start feeling isolated. So it becomes very important that you have a social circle too. Not engaging in physical and social activities further worsens the situation,” Singh said.

“Take a day at a time as it comes. If one is not living in present and only thinking about the future, then that person is unnecessarily falling into the trap of anxiety and depression. There will also be thoughts about self-doubt,” Singh told IANS.

“If you think the situation is not under control and it is lasting more than a month, please reach out for help to a trained clinical psychologist or even a psychiatrist in some cases,” she stressed.

Future, Working people, Present
India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate slipped to 5 per cent in the first quarter (April-June) the current financial year, the lowest in over six years. Pixabay

Shweta Sharma, Clinical Psychologist at Columbia Asia Hospital, Gurugram said that as many youth are already struggling with unemployment, the economic slowdown will further impact their mental state badly due to unpredictability.

“There is a tremendous rise in complaints such as unrealistic goals, fear of losing jobs and complaints about the work schedule,” Sharma said.

To fight against mental health issues, Sharma suggests that one should keep in mind that nothing is permanent in life.

“Everything fades away with time. So, if one is anxious about the current situation, one needs to find ways to relax his/her mind. One most doable ways is jotting down your thoughts immediately in a piece of paper. It helps to relax your mind,” she added.

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“Sometimes talking to a friend, who might also be going through some kind of stress, won’t help much and rather creates multiple issues. So, an intervention from the professional will help you to control your emotions and help you to calm down state of your body and mind,” Sharma said. (IANS)