Follow your passion! Did you ever have someone tell you that? Did it ever apply to your career? According to Professor Cal Newport of Georgetown University, that advice is “disastrous”! It has resulted in more failed businesses than all the recessions combined. He says that “Passion is not something you follow” yet, “Passion is something that will follow you as you put in the hard work to become valuable to the world.”
First of all think about your passion? What is it that you really love? Then ask yourself “will someone pay me for doing that?” Potential customers don’t care about your passion. Potential customers care about giving up money! If you are running your business on a passion, or hobby it probably won’t be sufficient income to live on. The key as an entrepreneur – or as an employee – is to identify a relevant passion.
Passion is more of an emotion that you put into your career. By producing something important, gaining respect for it, feeling a sense of control over your life, feeling a connection to other people – now that give a real sense of passion. If you can portray that in your business or career people will follow, people will give you money.
Professor Newport say that “work can be broken down into three categories: a job, a career, or a calling. A job pays the bills; a career is a path towards increasingly better work; a calling is work that is an important part of your life and a vital part of your identity”. (Clearly most people want their work to be a calling.) Passion takes time, the more experience you have the more you can see how your work has benefited others. You have built a strong professional and personal relationships with some of your employees, vendors, and customers. Where business success is concerned, passion is almost always the result of time and effort. It’s not a prerequisite.
Passion can be a side effect of mastery. If you practice hard, soon you might find you’re the best in your group, and that motivates you to keep practicing. Practice and achievement is a gradual, self-reinforcing process. If the work is interesting and you think there’s a market – meaning people will pay you for that work – that’s enough to get started. Then the work itself will give you the feedback you need. The satisfaction of achieving one level of success spurs you on to gain the skills to reach the next level and the next.
Do you want to love what you do? Do you want a change? Do you want to achieve something you can feel is right? Then pick something interesting. Pick something financially viable – something people will pay you to do or provide. Then work hard; improve your skills; whether at managing, selling, creating, implementing, or whatever your profession requires. Use the satisfaction and fulfillment of small victories as motivation to keep working hard.
Professor Newport says “Don’t focus on the value your work offers you (your passion), instead focus on the value you produce through your work: how your actions are important, how you’re good at what you do, and how you’re connected to other people”. By doing this the passion will follow and if you work hard enough they will not be able to ignore you.
So, is passion your’ calling, or can passion come from a skill you worked hard to achieve out of an interest? Show your passion through your work and applied strong enough, people will feel it and want it and pay gladly for it. Use your passion skills on all of your goals and inspirations and you will get better results.
If you want to learn more about how to develop you passion by placing them in your goals, I have just the thing for you.
Find it here.