Do You Love What You Do And Know If It Will Make You Successful?
16 March 2018
One of the greatest challenges we face as people trying to succeed in life is finding work that will lead to that success. By the time we are adults we pretty much come to understand that the lives we want to have are going to depend on the type of work/passion/calling we end up pursuing.
But the moment we decide that we truly need success in our lives or that we need to aim to having a certain type of life… we are faced with an important question. What should we pursue?
What work/job/passion should we dive into to begin our journey on the path towards success?
Now it’s worth noting that depending on where you are from, you might have access to something called career counseling. This is something often provided to young people in schools.
Basically it’s a program that tries to help children align themselves to fields or careers that would allow them to find success and fulfilment in the future.
And although it is extremely helpful and important, I believe that even adults need this after they have a had a few years of exposure to… well… “adulthood”.
Finding work that will leave you feeling fulfilled at the end of the day plus make you successful in the future, is a struggle for many.
Fortunately for us, there are people who have dedicated their lives/careers to finding out how we can find such jobs/work/callings/passions.
In his book Good To Great, author Jim Collins explains how asking yourself 3 questions could lead to you discovering a calling that would end up making you successful. Those questions are:
1. Are you good at what you do?
This is about skill, innate ability or even competence. Being able to do something that no one can do or very few can do will certainly align you to success. Because the world tends to greatly reward people who can do things that others can’t do as well.
Although there are many musicians, there are few great and successful ones. Although there are many basketball players, there are only a few great and successful ones. Although there are many business people there are only a few great and highly successful ones.
Finding out what you are good at is key in helping you plan for a more successful future. Naturally, getting better at what you are already good at is far easier that getting better at what you suck at.
2. Do you get paid for what you do?
If you can do something that people will pay you for, then you are definitely on your way to success. You can think of this as marketability. Are you good at something that people want enough to pay you for it?
If you are good at something that isn’t marketable, you might be developing a hobby as opposed to something that could lead to success. It is worth understanding that marketability makes pursuing success through your passion… a whole lot easier.
If you are doing work that isn’t marketable, you can still find success in it, if you HEAVILY invest in making it marketable. As you can imagine, this situation will most likely force you to spend way more time on things like sales and marketing. Areas which you might not necessarily be great at… plus, might not succeed at.
To attain success more “efficiently” try to focus on work that “speaks for itself”.
You might not like hearing that especially if you are passionate about something that you have been doing for most of your life. But these are just facts you will have to work with.
3. Do you love what you do?
This is very important because it will determine how you grow around what you do. Having passion for what you do allows you to be more invested in what you do. When you are more invested, then you tend to explore. You tend to learn more. You tend to persist. You tend to have faith during challenging times.
Passion will push you to discover things that only a handful of people know about in your field/industry. Giving you an unfair advantage over those who don’t care about what they do. Allowing you to seem more like an expert/professional compared to others. This is growth.
Passion will pull you out of situations that would often lead others to quit or fail. Passion will teach you patience and persistence. I can tell you now that the reason why some people can’t do 3D modelling or even art in general is because they lack the patience for it. It takes a really long time to make many types of art pieces. If you aren’t passionate about art… you will most likely have no patience for it.
Clearly, having a STRONG YES answer to all 3 questions puts you in a better position to succeed more. Plus you are more likely to find success faster if you have all three than if you don’t.
If you are good at what you do, have a market that’s ready to pay you for it but aren’t passionate about what you do… then you will not grow. You are more likely to get bored with what you are doing and will not care to know more about your field. You won’t find fulfillment. Work becomes a chore. You might build resentment over time.
If you are good at what you do, are passionate about doing it but do something that isn’t marketable… then you can’t succeed. It’s a hobby that you will pay to sustain. And only a hobby that you will sustain if you can pay for it. You will most likely drop it when you start running out of ways to fund it.
If you are passionate about what you do, have a market for it but aren’t good at it… then you have mediocrity. This is a situation where finding success will be extremely difficult because nothing makes you stand out. People who do things that make them stand out are often rewarded more than those who don’t.
Frankly, this might create the impression that you are lazy or incompetent. Something that people don’t necessary want unless they have no other option.
It’s worth paying attention to these questions if you are determined to find success for yourself. You can cut out years of trial and error if you focus on learning some of these “mechanics” of how success came to some people/companies.
Reading and exposing yourself to such knowledge is priceless. Again, it can save you years of blindly pursuing what you think will lead to success.
We live in an age where we can greatly reduce the amount of “guess work” that goes into building a successful life.
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