Katlyn Grasso loves her job as CEO of GenHERation. She talks excitedly about empowering high school girls and has the passion for what she does that all of us want to experience.
When I spoke with Katlyn for a recent Miami Herald column on pursuing your passion, she said something that stuck with me.
Grasso, 22, says she often encounters peers who hold jobs in which they are not fulfilled and offers this advice: “If you are not in a financial position where you can pursue your passion right away, find ways to incorporate it into your schedule — whether volunteering, working on a business idea on weekends, becoming an intern. You have to keep working at it.”
The reality is that fewer than half of American workers are satisfied with their jobs, according to a 2014 survey from the Conference Board
, a not-for-profit economic research institute. But just because you're in a job you're not passionate about, doesn't mean you can't eventually segue into doing something you love.
Let's say you're a window washer and you aren't exactly finding your job fulfilling. Instead of walking around complaining that you hate your job, think differently about the big picture. In a TEDx talk
in Kansas City, branding expert Terri Trespicio
said try doing something — anything — in your off hours and be open to where it takes you.
"Sometimes you don’t know what going to do next and that’s okay not to know. If are waiting to find your passion to take you there, you will be waiting a long time. Instead, spend your time and attention solving your favorite problems. Be useful and people will pay you for it. Success is when your energy and effort meets someone’s needs," she said.
At a time when people are desperate to figure out what they are passionate about and turn it into their life's work, Terri insists: "You don’t follow your passion, your passion follows you."
She's not the only one that believes that to be true. This morning I watched an interview with legendary filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola (known best for his film The Godfather). Coppola opened his third winery this month. Okay, I realize few of us have the financial means to launch a wine company but Francis said something that makes a lot of sense: "The things you do out of trying to enjoy life are the things that make business sense."
The bottom line is that you may not be super thrilled in your current job. You may even be miserable, longing to quit, yet desperate to keep a paycheck coming in or hold onto your benefits. If you find yourself venting or complaining about work all the time, remember you're never stuck. Look for opportunities in and out of your workplace to parlay into your next job or career.
Sometimes you don't have to look far for a solution. You might explore different departments or teams at your office where you can learn something new or find a project that excites you. Maybe you've lost interest in what you're doing, or maybe you never were interested, but it's pretty safe to bet there is something that interests you.
My friend, a lawyer, loves jewelry. She doesn't love her job as a lawyer. On the weekends, she started helping a friend with her jewelry business. Six months later, it's almost like my friend has become completely different person. When I talk to her, she enthusiastic and — happy! She hasn't given up practicing law, she just added something into her life that she enjoys.
You, too, can improve your work situation and find your passion, you just need to shift your mindset and take a leap! Life's too short to be miserable!
The Work/Life Balancing Act
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