In today’s challenging economic times, it’s easy to lose focus on your true passion in pursuit of simply making a living. Sometimes, it’s true, you just need to earn a paycheck, but if you’re only earning a paycheck, you may find that you end up feeling burned out, stressed out, or just generally unhappy.
That was my situation, I was working in a management position with good pay and benefits but plenty of long hours, plenty of stress, was overweight, unhappy, and didn’t feel like I had a clear “purpose”. So, about four years ago, I left the comforts of my corporate job to start out on my own. It hasn’t always been easy but I wouldn’t change it for anything.
Today, I own my own company, work on my own blogs, and enjoy life on my own terms and control my own schedule and destiny. I’m not subject to corporate layoffs, downsizing and no longer “punch the clock”. I manage my own business and am able to pursue projects that I am truly passionate about. Many people will tell you that you should pursue your passion while you maintain your full-time job. It’s great advice, if you can do it. For me, that just wasn’t an option. In a demanding management position where I already spent 40-70 hours a week, I simply didn’t have the time or energy to pursue my passion while working, raising a family, and just getting through life. And, I wasn’t exactly sure how to build a career around my passion, I just knew that I loved the internet, marketing, and business development and that in my current position, I felt overworked, overstressed, and under-appreciated.
It took leaving my job and working in real estate for a few years, allowing myself time to learn, grow, and pursue my passion for my career path to evolve. I found that I was right – I’m passionate about online marketing, social networking, and working with fun and creative people. Through my real estate career, I was able to hone my skills, learning about website design using WordPress, Search Engine Optimization and getting my page to rank on page one for a popular search term, internet marketing and social media. This experience gave me the confidence to pursue my passion, and before I knew it, people were asking me to speak at events, assist them, and teach them what I knew.
Sometimes following your passion isn’t a straight line, sometimes there are detours, and sometimes you may take on other experiences to help you reach your goals. Staying committed to your passion will help you navigate whatever comes your way.
Are you pursuing your passion? What suggestions do you have for others? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Update: Right after posting this article, I came across a study on CNN that 84% of people are dissatisfied with their current job, an amazing statistic.