Once you’ve identified what it is that you love, get busy on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn, connecting with people who share your areas of interest.
As Confucius said, “Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life.” It's great advice, but it’s not always that simple—it can be difficult to figure out what you love and how to convert that into a viable business or job. So here’s a step-by-step plan for pinpointing your passions—and nine ways to help you start turning them into your career.
1. Remember What You Loved as a Child
Often our childhood dreams, our deepest desires are squished by real-life pressure. But they are our true passions, which we may have sacrificed for the sake of a handsome salary, a stable career. It may be writing, maybe photography, or maybe cooking. Getting back in touch with those instincts & nurturing them, may give you real pleasure. It can open other doors in your life which you may have never thought of. You may have originated the real meaning of life, it’s not a mere job, not a handful of salary but a soulful satisfaction.
2. Make excuses following your dream
When you're in a job you dislike, it's easy to stay put and accept the steady stream of incoming paychecks. Leaving a company includes an element of risk, and it's easy to compose a mental list of excuses why you shouldn't pursue your dream. In the end, these reasons only lead to more frustration and dissatisfaction in your current job. So, instead of focusing on reasons why you shouldn't leave, start finding excuses to pursue your dream career and dare to dream."You need to create that urge to make things happen, nobody except you yourself can motivate you" said Pankaj Bhadouria, the very first Master Chef from India, entrepreneur, Brand Ambassador, TEDx speaker, author of the first official Master Chef Cookbook. The journey from a high school teacher to a ‘Master Chef’ winner was not easy for him, but he believed in himself, his potentials; his passion and thus why he is now celebrated as one of India’s top chefs. He quit the his16-year-old job for her passion.
3. Make time to make it happen
Once you've determined a passion you want to shape into a career, Deirdre Maloney, business consultant and president of Momentum, said it is critical to take the steps necessary to turn that idea into a reality."Once we pinpoint ideas, we need to do something decidedly not passionate: schedule time in our calendars to come up with our plan to get there," Maloney told Business News Daily. "The plan must be written down, even if it's broken out into tiny baby steps."
4. Eliminate Money from the Equation
If money were no object, what would you do? Would you travel? Spend all of your time with your children? Would you start a charitable organization to help abused women? Of course, money can’t be ignored, but don’t let financial pressures dictate your choices. Your career should ultimately lead to financial security, but if financial security is the defining motivator, it’s unlikely you’ll end up doing what you love.
5. Discover how to profit from your passion
A Software Engineer by profession, Pragya Bhatt worked for over 8 years in renowned companies like Infosys and Accenture. But when she felt that typical job that demanded long hours with work stress, she decided to give it all up for yoga. The struggle to transition from a ‘real career’ to a one where she’s following her passion wasn’t the easiest, but Pragya was determined. Besides running regular yoga courses in India as well as abroad, Pragya has also written a book “Beyond Asanas” published by Penguin eBury Press.
“The first thing you need to consider seriously is that you might really enjoy something, but might not like the process of making money through it. You might also have a very rosy view of spending every day immersed in something that you find fun right now, but when you have to make a living out of it, things are very different. See if you can test the waters by pursuing your passion part-time. I would also say plan your finances so that you can stay afloat for a while. So make sure that you have enough saved up to pay your rent for instance. Also, initially, you might need to sacrifice on how much you party and any other non-essential expenses. So you might not be able to buy every single thing you fancy or travel so much. You might end up sleeping less, seeing your friends and family less. Know that this too shall pass.”
6. Ask Your Friends for Feedback
Sometimes you’re just not the best judge of what makes you happy. Ask the people who know you intimately when you seem the happiest and what you do the most enthusiastically. Their answers may surprise you.
7. Read through a University Course Catalog
Find some quiet time and see which courses naturally interest you. What would you study if you could do it all over? What courses do you think you could teach? Which subjects scare you to death, and which ones do you find boring? Revisiting these possibilities will help point you in the direction of subjects and topics that you love.
8. Identify your Professional Hero
Of everyone you know, either personally or in your extended frame of reference (from your dentist to Shahrukh Khan), whose career would you most want to emulate? Reach out to him to learn more about how he got to where he is, or, if that’s not possible, read everything you can about his career and life.
9. Think of What You Enjoy That You Also Do Well
After you’ve done these exercises, think about what you’ve learned. Focus on the things that you both enjoy and do well—whether you have a way with animals, make a killer lemon tart, or are crazy for Origami—and write them down. Then, narrow the list to the top three or four things. Keep it handy, review it often, and use it as your jumping-off point when you’re plotting your career move.
Once you have a solid idea of what you love doing, it can still be a big leap to turn that passion into a viable career. Here are four easy steps to start making the change:
1. Talk to a Career Counselor
Career counselors help others figure out what they want for a living, and they’ll have insights and tools to help you zero in on the things you love most and do best; and also are able to offer ideas and guidance on how to find a career that best suits those passions. Take advantage of those resources.
2. Leverage Social Media
More than ever, we live in a social world. Once you’ve identified what it is that you love, get busy on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn, connecting with people who share your areas of interest. Read blogs, join forums, and find out what it’s really like to do what you love.
3. Start Saving Money
Once you feel strongly that you want to start down this new path, start saving a lot. The more money you have in the bank, the fewer finances will have to rule your decisions. And the less scary it will be if and when you do quit your job.
4. Just Do It
Ultimately, you won’t really know what you love to do unless you actually bite the bullet. Until you give it a go, it’s really just speculation. So, whether you take a small step like signing up for a class or you dive head-first into entrepreneurship, roll up your sleeves and do it. You’ll never know until you try.
I found my passion—and I’m grateful for that. But these tips are still serving me well as I go down this path because it’s important that my work continues to be fueled by what I love most. And if that falls into place, I am hopeful that I’ll never have to work a day in my life.
So, my dear students, always consider Warren Buffett’s words, “Take a job that you love.” And let’s not forget the prolific thoughts of Steve Jobs“...the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”
May you succeed in whatever you do in Life!! Cheers!!
The writer is a faculty of Computer Science at Techno International Newtown (A unit of Techno India Group). She has 14 years of prolonged experience as a Professor in the field of computer science and has expertise in subjects like Operating System, Digital Electronics, Object-oriented programming with C++/JAVA to name a few. She also acts as a coordinator of the admission and marketing cell of Techno India Group & Sister Nivedita University.
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