Are You Passionate About Your Career?

Posted on 04 December 2009


Passionate About Your Career

In my more than twenty-five years in the career services industry, I have met many people who were unhappy with their careers.  The sources of their unhappiness, in some cases, may have been with the particular circumstances relative to their places of employment.  But, for far too many, their dissatisfaction rested with their actual position and job functions.  And, the dissatisfaction to which I have been a witness is not simply with one class or type of job, but runs the gamut from labor to professional and executive positions.

 

For most of us, our work or career represents a significant portion of our lives, in a typical week anywhere from 20-50% or more of its 168 hours are spent in preparing, commuting, and actually performing our job functions.  When you consider that sleep takes another 20-33% of our week, you understand that, for most people, more time is spent in career-related activities than in personal pursuits.

 

With so much of our adult lives invested in career, you would think that the primary consideration in selecting a career would be whether or not we would enjoy it.  The sad fact is that, for most people, our career choices are based either upon incomplete information or are purely accidental.  How many people who you know have been educated in one discipline and are working in another?  Similarly, how many people do you know whose initial jobs dictated their career paths?

 

Most of us choose careers at a time in our lives when youth and idealism sway our judgment.  Our knowledge of the career path selected and the actual job functions performed is usually fragmentary.  And, the education we receive, while preparing us with fundamental skills and knowledge, usually only hints at the job to be done at its conclusion.

 

Once in a particular line of work, leaving that line to pursue another is difficult and becomes increasingly so the longer we remain in a particular career.  Of course, people do change careers each and every day – but, at a cost.  That cost is usually economic, which may have been the reason for the career choice initially.  For someone young and unattached, that cost may be easily born.  But, for someone older with significant financial and familial commitments, the cost may be a significant barrier to changing into a more enjoyable career.

 

The career battle between economics and happiness is one that can spawn stress and depression, breakup relationships and marriages, and, in the most dire circumstances, lead to casualties among its participants.  It doesn’t have to.  People who are happy in their work generally outperform those who are not and receive greater rewards – although those rewards are not always financial.

 

For those people who feel trapped in a career they consider loathsome, plan an exit strategy.  Calculate the impact on lifestyle that a career change may bring and reorder your life to accommodate your switch to a more pleasant and rewarding career.  For young people considering a choice of career, find something about which you can be passionate or, at least, very interested.  If in pursuing this choice you find it is not what you expected, seek and pursue another alternative.

 

In life, there are no hard and fast timetables.  There is no rule as to when one’s formal education should be finished or when someone should be settled with home and family.  Live your life free of the boundaries that others would impose on you.  If you do, you’ll find happiness and peace.





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4 Responses to “Are You Passionate About Your Career?”

  1. Randy Pena says:

    Hi there,

    I looked over your blog and it looks really good. Do you ever do link exchanges on your blog roll? If you do, I’d like to exchange links with you.

    Let me know if you’re interested.

    Thanks..

  2. Janis O. says:

    In life, there are no hard and fast timetables. There is no rule as to when one’s formal education should be finished or when someone should be settled with home and family. Live your life free of the boundaries that others would impose on you. If you do, you’ll find happiness and peace.

    I copied and pasted the end of the article here (above) as it bears repeating. It contains hope for those of us caught in this hellish economy and those of who are just plain miserable in our jobs. Thank you for a very insightful and inspirational article.

  3. Jesica Bleakley says:

    I’m pleased I found this webpage!

  4. Brianne Bonamico says:

    I don’t agree with everything in this piece of writing, but you do make some very good points. Im very interested in this subject and I myself do alot of research as well. Either way it was a well thoughtout and nice read so I figured I would leave you a comment.


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