It’s a hot topic that is often over glamourized by all the people who will tell you that you MUST follow your passion.
Life’s not that easy. Here’s why it doesn’t always make sense to “follow your passion.”
Not Everyone Has a Passion
If you feel bad every time you read or hear that you must follow your passion, don’t. Not everyone has something that they are die hard passionate about and that’s okay.
I’m passionate about my family – about being a good mother to my two daughters. Keeping family close is my biggest goal in life. If you’re like me it might be hard to jump on the “follow the passion” bandwagon.
Passion Doesn’t Always Pay the Bills
If I had to pick my brother’s passion it would hands down be deer hunting. He loves it. He saves up his vacation from work every year so he can take off during deer season. He stays out in the woods from dawn until dusk. Hunting is his passion. But you know what, hunting isn’t paying the bills.
What would happen if he followed his passion? He wouldn’t be able to keep a roof over his head or food on the table.
That’s just one example of passion not paying the bills. How many people do you know who are passionate about a certain TV show? A video game? Walking through the woods?
Passion doesn’t always pay the bills and it doesn’t need to!
The Biggest Reason: Passion Fades
What starts out as a passion can very quickly fade.
A few years ago I was super passionate about budgeting. I would pinch pennies to the extreme. I read every single personal finance book the library owned. While I still manage my money well, budgeting is no longer a passion, it’s simply a habit.
I don’t have to think about what to do with my money – I just do it. Right now I’m more passionate about increasing my income than I am cutting my expenses. I’m coming pretty close to hitting my income goals and I’m sure I’ll soon have a new goal I’m passionate about.
Passion often changes. It’s like when you’re a in a new relationship. At first you can’t bear the thought of being away from your significant other. After a while you get used the relationship and things aren’t as hot and heavy as they once were.
There might be some exceptions to this but generally speaking your passions will be constantly changing. So, technically if you try and make a living out of your passions you’ll be switching careers a whole heck of a lot! (I can’t imagine you’d make much money doing that…)
Here’s What to Do Instead
Following a passion is, most of the time, horrible advice. Your passions might not be profitable and will constantly change. So what should you do?
Pick a career in something you at least mildly enjoy doing. You don’t have to love your career but you absolutely shouldn’t hate it. Or do something like I did and design a flexible career so you can enjoy your life more.
If you think you must follow a passion in order to make money then do it on the side. And please realize that following a passion does not mean you’ll have a perfect career that you love all the time. Every career path has its own set of pros and cons and making money off of a hobby or passion is no different.