Instead of looking for a career you love, strive to love what you’re good at


How many times have you ever received the advice to ‘just follow your passion’ when you are not sure what to do with your life? Or, how many times have you offered someone else that piece of advice? Do you have a passion? What about the people you may have advised to follow their passion?

Photo: BURST

This common advice presupposes that everyone has a passion, and that’s the first point where it goes wrong. Not everyone has a passion. Some call it an inner voice, an inner drive that makes you know just what you want to do with your life. While that may be true for some people, it’s definitely not true for everyone. Next, it presupposes that so long as you have a passion to follow, then you have got everything sorted out. It makes it sound like life is going to be good to you so long as you follow your passion. Unfortunately, living a good and successful life requires so much more than a feeling of emotional satiety.

https://i.imgur.com/oZ0YcFv.jpgOnce you’re all grown up you have to pay bills, eat and take care of other responsibilities. If your passion can’t do this for you, it’s time to take a step back. As depressing as it may sound to the people who have already identified their passion and purpose in life, doing what you think you love does not always work. When it doesn’t, you have to find something else that you’ll love doing.

It’s also advisable to avoid the mindset that your passion is the only thing that can lead to your career success. This puts you on the highway to possible failure. In short, when you put all your faith in what you think you love, you’re likely to come crashing down when, for some reason, it doesn’t work. After this, you’ll feel like you’ve lost every chance at making it in life. When you’re told to follow your passion, it may also suggest that there can only be one passion. Interests change as people grow and experience life, so do not constrict yourself to the idea that there’s only one thing you can ever love doing.

Photo: BURST

Let’s say you find something that you’re good at and that earns you an income and sustains your lifestyle, but it’s not something you love doing. The key here is to learn to love it. As long as you’re good at it, it’s possible to love doing it. Honing the skills needed is one way to get there. You should have a goal that exceeds being just like everyone else in the industry. When you’re giving what everyone else is, all you’ll get is tons of pressure as you compete with them. On the other hand, if you have something unique to offer that cannot easily be found elsewhere, you’ll eventually find a purpose and get to love it with time. Instead of following a passion that may, well, not lead you anywhere, you’ll have developed a passion that’s already taking you places!