Find Your Passion and Love Your Job!

What is that you love to do? Most of us just go through the motions. I’m talking about the amount of time we spend in our chosen profession. If we are lucky enough, we’ve found our calling and enjoy what we do each and every day. If you are in that group, consider yourself blessed. People who love their jobs are in a much smaller minority of today’s workforce than you think. I talk to candidates every day that absolutely HATE their job, can’t stand their boss or they just don’t fit into their company’s corporate culture. They spend over 2,000 hours a year in a stupor just trying to hang on. OUCH!

That’s got to be very painful.

Their goal: To get through the day- week – or month. They have to set mini-goals just to survive each working day. But what if (just what if) you took a step back, and did an honest assessment of what you do for a living compared to your real passion? What would it be? What would you be doing? Would in be in the same market/space? Would it be the identical functional role you have today? I know – it’s a tough question.

Use ZERO based thinking to truly dig deep and ask yourself this question: Knowing what I know now about my job/career – if I could do it all over again, would I be doing the exact same thing? Would you? Let’s face it, this IS your Super Bowl and you should enjoy what you do and find ways to make every minute of every day matter. When you look in the mirror and truly answer the question I just posed – are you being honest with yourself? If you don’t like your answer it may be time to find your passion.

I’m going to take a page from my son Justin’s playbook to illustrate my point. Justin knew at the age of 9 that he wanted to spend the rest of his life in music. A lot of kids talk about becoming a rock’n’roll star, a firefighter, a NBA star or whatever kids dream before they complete their first decade on this planet. Justin took a guitar lesson at the age of 8. His instructor, not seeing the effort he was putting forth (between his lessons) told him not to come back if he was not prepared for his lesson and didn’t practice. In other words he was told not to waste his instructor’s time unless he was serious. That day Justin came home with a new-found passion. He went into his bedroom and practiced. He rarely came out (except to eat, go to school and take his weekly guitar lesson). This lasted for over 9 years. As parents – we were obviously very concerned. This strange phenomenon lasted until he was almost 18. After learning all he could about music theory in high school, he spent the summers after his sophomore and junior years (in the prime of his teenage years) in 6-week summer music programs at The Berklee College of Music in Boston. He was featured in Guitar Player Magazine in the Spotlight column just before his 18th birthday. After high school, he was awarded a 4-year scholarship to attend Berklee to further hone and master his skills and – to follow his passion for music. He nailed it.

June 8, 2010 was a special day for Justin and our entire family. That was the day his band RIBS released their first album (British Brains) – and I’m confident it won’t be his last. You see, Justin has a plan. Mostly, he has a passion for what he does. He made a decision long ago to spend the rest of his life in music. He follows that dream every day. When he’s not performing, he’s teaching music at a private music school in Boston. When he’s not teaching, he’s practicing or writing and composing at night. He’s told me over and over that for him it’s not about the money. Nope. It’s about doing what he loves.

Justin may make millions one day – and he may not. He’s certainly talented enough. Although RIBS sold hundreds of CD’s on their very first day following their debut CD release (i-Tunes) – that’s not the point. For him, it’s about living his dream and spending the rest of his life doing what he loves to do.

He’s figured it out. Now that’s pretty damn cool.

About the author

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Tim Tolan

Tim Tolan is the Senior Partner of the Healthcare IT and Services Practice of Sanford Rose Associates. He has conducted searches for CEOs, presidents, senior vice presidents, vice presidents of business development, product development and sales. Tim is also the co-author of "The CEO’s Guide to Talent Acquisition – Finding Talent Your Competitors Overlook," available on Amazon.

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