Make your passion a priority. And, why not get paid for it!
What would you do all day if you could do it? Are you able to do that at least 80% of your day? Or are you spending 80% of your day on things that you are not passionate about? If you had a choice, would you choose to be happy most of the day every day?
I have always been a person who “lives to work” and who is never off the clock. I take a great deal of pride being available day and night for those who needed me! Someone I respect a great deal once said, “there is nothing Shari won’t do to get you an answer in about 14 seconds”. 14 seconds! I thought, shit, she’s right! I love being someone who can be counted on.
Recently, a former colleague reached out to me to ask me if I would be interested in working with them on a project. It would be to create a plan on an initial concept. This is someone I admire and respect greatly and whom I would hate to say no too. While the concept is cool and exciting, the defining stage is not where I am at my best. Sure, I can do it, especially if I have a team of people to create it with and bounce ideas off! But to do it alone will take longer and likely frustrate me! I had to say no. However, I did let her know what stage of the initiative I would be at my best and deliver the best result. If there was a team and I could lead the team, throw out ideas, help bring clarity and definition and then ultimately bring the idea to clients, inspect it, refine it, make it successful. THAT is where I would be at my best! I could sense my energy and excitement talking about what that phase could look like with me in the work!
It took me YEARS to admit what I didn’t like and what I wasn’t great at. It took even longer not to feel guilty about it. In this case, NOT helping was helping!
It’s so hard to pay attention to your own happiness when the day to day is all consuming. Not everyone feels empowered to say what work gives them energy or not. And many don’t have the luxury to say no to the type of work they get. But take baby steps toward it.
Make a list of things you love to spend time on.
Can you get paid for those things?
Are you good at it?
Do others tell you that you are good at it too?
Take the phone call! Make the connection! You are in charge! The consequences of staying with anything or anyone that doesn’t fulfill you is time you will never get back.