It’s not enough to have a job now – you have to be passionate about it, too!
But actually, being passionate about your job can help you feel better, at least according to a few working women.
Ashley Kreze, a clinic director and registered clinical counselor in Canada, said in an email that women tend to take care of others first, and their own needs get put on the back burner.
“When this happens, passions decrease, motivation wanes, and burn-out can happen,” Kreze said. “It's so important for women to be passionate with their jobs or careers because these careers are for them.”
If you’re working full-time, that’s eight hours a day spent at work, which is a big portion of your time. And believe me, that time goes slowly when you’re not feeling passionate about what you’re doing.
“When we feel passion we feel more invigorated, more energized, and more in-tune with our strengths, desires, and goals,” Kreze added.
Being passionate about your job can make you happier, especially if you explore and use more of your “signature strengths.” This is discussed in the book “Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment,” by positive psychologist Martin Seligman.
“When we understand and use more of our ‘signature strengths,’ life feels more easy and exhilarating, rather than exhausting and frustrating,” Kreze said. “Our bodies and minds are more relaxed, and we feel more positive.”
Passion for your job may not happen overnight. In fact, it may take some time and work on your part, but it can be developed.
“When you understand more about who are you, where your needs lie, and what excites you, you'll be able to better fine-tune your passions,” Kreze said. “If you're struggling with how to start that, consider starting something new in your personal life.”
This includes experimenting with activities that you haven’t tried before, such as taking a dance class or even trying a different approach at work.
“When we tune into our creative side of our lives, we discover qualities about ourselves we may not have known existed,” Kreze added.
If you’re considering a career or job change and don’t know where to start to find the best job for yourself, Kreze suggests asking yourself a few questions, such as “Is there something you already love doing?” and “What do you spend hours reading about?”
You can also brainstorm and take out a pen and paper and write down what you like and what you’re good at, she said.
Kanesha Baynard, a life coach and workshop leader, points out that many women build their lives around their jobs.
“Women who are passionate about their jobs are more focused on creating their lives and having their work fold into it,” she said in an email.
Work is obviously more pleasurable when you’re passionate about it, as well.
“Women who are passionate about their jobs also show up everyday,” Baynard said. “Showing up every day breathes life into what a woman is most passionate about.”
Difficult tasks, like getting out of a comfy bed in the morning, may seem a little easier when you have your passion flowing into your job.
“The point is, when a woman is passionate about her work, she is unstoppable even when major obstacles or speed bumps show up,” she said.
So what if you’re just not feeling it at work?
Baynard has several tips to help you stir up your work passion:
1) With anything worth doing and pursuing, women have to allow room to pause and admire the journey.
2) Focusing on the lessons along the way can serve as the blueprint for making decisions and plans that can increase work passion. This can give the right amount of courage to move to the next level, and serve as a barrier to an unhealthy comfort zone that smothers internal fires that fuel passions.
3) Observing reactions, internal dialogue, methods for changing course, or the ability to stay the course shines a light on a woman's ability to be grateful for her progress. Then she can use these insights and discoveries to fuel their passion.
4) Learning how to nurture passions and stay focused on a personal journey is essential to keeping the compare-and-despair vortex from taking over.
5) Aligning thoughts, words, and actions is also important in being passionate about your life and work.
6) Bombarding yourself with affirming messages or leaving a love note Post-it on your bathroom mirror when you get ready for bed are simple ways to increase your passion.
Do you think it’s important to be passionate about your job? Have you ever felt a lack of passion? How did you fix it?
Kreze, Ashley. Email interview. June 2, 2015.
Baynard, Kanesha. Email interview. June 2, 2015.
Reviewed June 8, 2015
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith