Personal Development

Should You Always Pursue Your Biggest Passion as a Career?

Kayla Matthews
Written by Kayla Matthews

There’s a famous sentiment that expresses the belief if you love what you do, making a living won’t feel like so much effort. Inspired by the goal of making sustainable incomes from their passions, many people sacrifice stability and defy expectations by doing things that truly make them happy. Knowing whether you should follow suit can be a difficult conclusion to reach, but the insight below should give some guidance.

passion_careerPursuing Something You Love Makes It Possible to Capitalize on Existing Strengths

Maybe you’re stuck in an unfulfilling office job, but feel hopeful because when you were in college, writing professors always said you have the skills needed to make a living as a novelist or copywriter. Even better, you’ve always loved to write.

This scenario offers an example of how doing something you’re passionate about gives an opportunity to sharpen your skills.

Sometimes, focusing on what you do well also makes it simpler to discover the ways your skills equip you to get profitable through a passion. Generally, the more you practice something, the better you become when doing it. That means you could potentially earn money from writing and express yourself more vividly through words at the same time.

It May Take a While to Earn Enough to Live On

Some people argue since income generation models are evolving and expanding, it’s more likely you’ll be able to do what moves you and not go broke than it was when traditional jobs were the norm. That’s especially true if you stay committed, work hard to continually improve and have a strong network of peers who are able to provide encouragement and advice.

With that said, it’s probably going to be extremely hard to immediately begin earning enough to survive on while doing what you love. It might be wise to consider pursuing your passion outside of work first, and then quitting your existing career once an enthusiasm turns into a consistently reliable source of cash.

You Might Be Able to Fill an Existing Need

Some people face their passions head on after realizing there’s a need in the marketplace that’s not being met at all, or not being met in the best possible ways. For example, Earl and John Apfelbaum are involved in a family-run stamp business. Established decades ago, it catered to the needs of society during the Great Depression. Since disposable income was scarce, people looked for inexpensive but meaningful ways to pass the time.

In that instance, stamp collecting was a good activity to pursue on limited means. As a result, the Apfelbaum’s stamp business was able to stay open when many other businesses failed. It’s still a comprehensive resource for stamp collectors today.

You May Encounter a Lack of Understanding or Acceptance

When deciding to push ahead with plans to make your passion and career the same thing, people in your life, such as colleagues and family members, may not respond favorably. However, it’s unrealistic to expect support from others that’s unconditional and constant.

Sometimes that’s because the people you’re wishing would accept your decision are dealing with tough situations too, and don’t have the capacity to fully support you all the time.

It may also be the case that certain individuals are unable to give the nod of approval to your venture because they genuinely have doubts about the probability of success. You can tackle this possibility by trying to be as clear as possible about why you believe taking this route is the right thing to do, and remaining true to yourself by sticking to your intentions regardless of discouraging feedback.

A Career You Genuinely Love Could Provide a Greater Sense of Purpose

Ask anyone you know and it’s likely that person will agree life is better when it’s purposeful. It’s hard to feel you’re living life in a worthwhile way if all you do is go put in hours at a well-paying job you despise.

On the other hand, many people embrace certain activities because they bring an undeniable sense of purpose. Depending on the circumstances, doing something you thoroughly enjoy might allow you to singlehandedly change people’s lives for the better. At the very least, even when your passion primarily uplifts you and doesn’t have a huge impact on society, you can still find comfort in the reality you’re getting to live in a way that makes you feel extremely content.

Clearly, the question posed in this post’s title doesn’t have a clear-cut answer. Like most other major life decisions, prioritizing your passion is something that requires careful thought, diligent research and a willingness to listen to tips from others who have made the same bold move.

About the author

Kayla Matthews

Kayla Matthews

I'm a productivity blogger who writes for The Huffington Post, Tiny Buddha and The Daily Muse. You can find me also here