everywhere you look, you will find people who are not happy with their jobs. They want to get more out of life and are undecided about what to do next in life. It is at this time where you hear specific advice. Maybe you have it with someone else or you may have heard it yourself: Do what you love. This phrase comes in many forms:
- Follow your passion.
- Through hard work and determination, you can live the dream.
- Find your calling.
The optimism behind these phrases is well-intentioned, however this is the worst kind of advice to give to anyone. Instead, I present in this article some possible alternatives.
Why Doing What You Love Is Bad Advice?
Before you jump into what you should consider, it's worth considering why this advice is terrible. Then again, there might be someone who utensils like eating candy or maybe that's the only advice you've heard. Before getting into too many details, you first need to develop and explore what passions are. These are the things that define us and give us meaning. Where the problem lies is this advice, using it as an ideal whether your life will be successful and fulfilling.
This can lead to more confusion
This advice raises many questions. The largest of them is “what is passion? What does it mean to be passionate? Psychology Today author Allison e McWilliams PhD wrote an interesting piece about our relationships at work ((Psychology Today: why you shouldn't "do what you love")). It describes three main areas of work:
- Job Orientation – Work is a means to an end, allowing you to get on with other things in life.
- Career guidance is the concern for a job that allows a person to get promoted.
- By naming orientation - work you create your personality. your meaning.
The point is that while some of us may not be passionate about work, you're doing the work for good reason. The advice to "do what you love" is more of a calling orientation and that it may not be what you would like to pursue. After all, there is nothing wrong with any of these areas. None of them is superior to the others. This can lead to confusion among people because they may work for completely different reasons.
Every job has a sore spot
If you're in-between careers or feel unhappy about your job, it seems like the grass is greener on the other side. Following the advice to do what you love feels great at first, but it can be short-lived. This is because every job will have something that you are not going to enjoy. There's going to be something that you need to do that makes it feel like fucking and not something that you're passionate about. It becomes a chore and, in turn, you may lose the passion that keeps you going down this path. This raises another question.
Passion is not always necessary to become a career
People have many passions that give us more opportunities to do what we love. It seems big at first, but as mentioned, some things can cause our relationship to change. Perhaps you have too many hobbies and you are lost, confused or frustrated with what you are trying to do. Or maybe you stumble upon something that changes how you view your passion. For example, cooking is a passion. But if you decide to become a chef, you would be subject to constantly making the same dishes with little variety. When people give this advice, some of them are suggesting that we only have one thing that we love to do. But this is not true. You have several passions. Not to mention, you can turn a lot of hobbies or passions into businesses today, thanks to technology and business tools.
What Parameters Should Be Considered?
Following something based on your passion can lead to problems, but it doesn't change the situation. As such, here are some things you can keep in mind that can help you lead a more fulfilling life.
1. Look at your skill set
You have different skills and talents that can help in different parts of the job. If you have communication skills, you have a good chance of getting any job that requires you to be active. The idea is to look at yourself and see what skills you have and how it fits with what you want to do. When you have identified your strengths or something that requires little effort from you to analyze, then you have the opportunity to develop it further. For example, if you are experienced in the kitchen, you know there are several basic dishes that you can make. But you can still grow that skill by trying new dishes, picking up a few new spices. This allows you to expand skills at your own pace. When you look at your overall skill set, you will be able to get a better idea of what you might be able to continue with and how you can scale it. By spending some time with it, you may even find a way to get more done with this skill in your current workplace.
2. Apply Some Tests
In Cal Newport book So Good They Can't Ignore You: Why Trump Skills Is A Passion For Jobs You Love, Newport explains why passion is not something to pursue. Instead, passion is what follows you after you work hard. With that in mind, there are two tests you can try to determine if a hobby should remain a hobby or if you can turn it into a career. The first test is the test of passion. Think about something that you are passionate about. But here's the catch: ask yourself if someone is really going to pay you to do it. Going back to the previous point, money matters a lot, and even if you do what you love, it's not going to fill empty stomachs or keep you warm at night. This is a harsh reality. Not only that, but a person shouldn't care how passionate you are for something. Instead, they care about giving up money. The money they invest in giving them enough value? It all comes back whether someone is willing to pay for their passionate labor. The second test is the test of experience. For this test, you want to assess how much experience you have in this area and how much you are willing to spend in this area. With this test, our passion becomes something that makes us spend time and energy on something. The people who pay for the passion they have, unlike those at the bottom of the industry, are barely making ends meet. The difference between those who thrive and those who don't is that the first one has gone through a feedback effect. It's when you stick hard enough that you figure out that you're better than others when it comes to the task. You can get other feedback in other ways, but overall, it creates a cycle in which the feedback motivates you to practice more. You begin to develop a system or process that allows you to make more progress and develop your skills. By doing these two tests, you can start to see in time this is what you want to do. More information, you learn more about yourself and whether you can do it.
3. Be Practical, Not Just Passionate
In an article published in Quartz, Ekaterina Baab-Muguira talked about her reasoning on careers that pay well for what you do love. ((Quartz: don't do what you love for a career - what will make you money)) She claims that when you work for money, your goal to work is clearer. Not only that, but money is also a problem that can be solved in the main, and this is a good goal for the general. Her philosophy is that the more money you make now, the less you will need later in life and the less you will have to worry about it when pursuing these other passions. This is a practical approach. After all, money cannot buy happiness, but it can lead to many happy events in life. All in all, this can be a good encouragement for you and it can take shape as you read your work now. Passion is what comes in the work we do. This is what follows us, not what we should pursue. Instead of giving advice, spend time looking at yourself and start asking questions. What are you into? What passion can help you make money? Is this something you know you can do for a long time? Keeping our heads straight and thinking rationally about our passions can help us sift through what can lead us to a new and better life.
Doing what you love seems good on the surface. It makes us feel good because it makes us believe that we can control our lives. However, the harsh reality of life makes this advice inappropriate. This is the best scenario for us if we can do what we love, but that's okay if not.
Learn More About What You Love
- 7 Important Steps to Start Making a Living Doing What You Love (Finally!)
- 10 Things To Remember If You Want To Do What You Love
- 7 Ways You Can Make Time For Your Passion