We’re conditioned to follow the path of least resistance. We regularly make decisions based on the relative ease at which a respective task can be completed or accomplished. If something puts up too many obstacles, then we shift gears to something much less arduous.
Yet, the great irony remains that we only truly value something when we’ve had to work for it. The harder it is the bigger sense of achievement. The goal shouldn’t be to settle for what’s easiest, but what’s hardest.
That’s why we should purge statements like “follow your passion” or “do what you love” from our vocabulary. They reinforce the idea that to be successful or fulfilled in your career you need to simply do this one thing – pursue your “passion” – and everything else will fall into place. It’s as if your passion is lying in wait in your kitchen cupboard for you to come across.
For most, finding a career you’re passionate about takes time and regularly involves working in different industries, for different people, at different companies. It can also mean making big changes, whether going back to school or changing career completely, but they’re all steps along the same path to carving out what truly inspires and motivates you.
You’ll often hear experts or business leaders romanticize how they got into their respective fields. In hindsight it will sound as if it was destiny or they knew exactly what they were doing. This serves to only proliferate the entire “passion” myth, but the reality is often much different than they describe.
In all likelihood, they were sitting exactly where you are now still trying to work things out and understand where exactly they were going. What they will have in common though is that they avoided the easy decisions and instead challenged themselves to take on more than they could seemingly handle.