When most people reach out to me about finding the career they love, I get a lot of false assumptions about passion. Many people assume that it’s all about doing what you like and avoiding what you dislike. This approach will not lead to a thriving or meaningful career. We all get bored of doing the same activity over and over again after a while, particularly if there is lack of purpose. However, if you think of a passion as something you want to create rather than something you like to do, it changes everything.
We all want careers where we get to help people and feel like we are making a difference.
But you don’t have to be a doctor to save lives and you don’t have to be a social worker to help those with trauma. No matter which profession you choose, you will be helping someone simply by doing your job. Yet, for most people, that’s not enough. We have to be able to make a difference in the area we really care about. We have to see the results and we have to be told the words of gratitude in order to feel appreciated.
What do you really care about on a global scale? Are you passionate about humanity, the homeless issue, environment, health, the wellbeing of children, diversity? And the list goes on. What difference do you want to make in your area of choice? And which career can you choose so you get to make that difference? And even if your career is not directly related to your chosen area, how can you still make that difference indirectly?
Keeping your passion alive requires you to look at a big picture.
Many employees out there tend to focus on doing their job. They rarely give themselves a credit or think of their work as a contribution. They don’t see themselves as someone who is making a difference in the world. Therefore, they are making themselves small. No wonder they come home feeling exhausted and drained, dreading Mondays and looking forward to Fridays. And eventually their jobs become all about their paycheck.
When you choose your career based on what you really care about or what you want to create in the world, then you will work eagerly on every task and activity to make it happen. Whether you like or dislike those tasks will become less relevant. And if you come across the task that you really hate doing, you have a few choices. You can bite the bullet and do it anyway because it needs to be done. You can find a way to enjoy it, make it fun and game, thinking about the reward you will get upon completion. Or you can delegate it to someone else who is more experienced and will happily do it for you.
Are you making a difference in your current job?
Now, let’s look at your current job. Do you feel like you are making a difference for other people with the work you do? They may or may not verbalize their gratitude to you on a regular basis. You may or may not see the obvious change happening over time. You may not even be aware of what is happening to your company or which direction it is going. But if you really don’t care about your job all that much, it is time to think about what you really care about. A career where you get to make a difference in the world will surely make an even bigger difference in your life.