My father taught me many great life principles. One of the best things about growing up in the home of a training consultant is that my Dad believed “if it will work at the kitchen table, it will work at the conference table” and he tried out many of his lessons on us before he introduced them to his corporate clients. Now, not everything he taught me was suitable for the workplace (belching at will comes to mind), but still many of the lessons I learned as a boy remain with me today.
Passion is one of those lessons. I can remember, like it was yesterday, my father telling me, “David, figure out what you love to do, and then figure out how to get paid to do it, and you will never work a day in your life.” I did not fully understand it as a boy, but I have seen it to be true the older I get.
I love being a speaker…I mean, I love it!!! I will never retire. People often ask me when I think I will come off the road and stop speaking … I tell them never! I mean why would I stop doing something I love only to try and fill my days doing things I don’t enjoy as much as speaking? That does not make sense to me. I am one of those in life who is truly doing what I was created to do…and, sadly, we are rare.
So, how ‘bout you? Do you love what you are doing? Do you wake up each day filled with anticipation of spending time doing that which you so enjoy? If not, why not?
This past week I met so many people who, in their 40s and 50s, have just now started doing that which “lights their fire”. These were mostly second or third career individuals who had left great jobs because they weren’t fulfilled. What did they move to…teaching! Not only are they happier, but their families are too. And get this, most of them took big paycuts as an added bonus!
Are their jobs perfect? No.
Is there a perfect job? No.
There are aspects of any job that don’t excite us. For me, I get tired of all the time I spend alone on the road, the frustrations of air travel, eating by myself in restaurants, and sleeping in strange beds just to name a few.
But the folks I have met recently seemed to be so fulfilled in their careers. I’ve met software engineers, military personnel, R & D scientists, and others who found themselves simply “going through the motions” of their daily life. It was refreshing to speak with them and see the excitement they now have for their work. One former high paid, big oil engineer said, “I enjoy trying to be a good teacher much more than not caring about being a good engineer.”
So, follow your passion and enjoy your work…you certainly spend a lot of time there. You deserve it!