“Work is not man’s punishment. It is his reward, and his strength, and his pleasure” George Sand.
A co-worker was talking to me about her oldest going off to college. She shared that she is trying to teach her children to follow their passion so they can find a dream job. The old saying goes “do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.”
I didn’t say this her, but I don’t think this is a complete picture of the real world. Part of my job is recruiting, hiring and retention and I would say that the majority of my staff is not making a living following their passion. I would also say that the majority of my staff works for a really good company, with wonderful people, they are content in their work and leave at the end of the day satisfied with the work they’ve done. They are making a living and able to do things outside of the office which they ARE passionate about. This is enough.
I think we should teach children to be happy and content in what they are doing. Teach value in hard work and work ethic instead of just chasing this elusive dreamy career. Those dream careers no matter what your passion is, are limited. At some point most of the people are going to have to come to terms with the fact that they are going to have settle on something that pays the grocery bill.
I see a recurring theme in the younger staff that doesn’t think their job should ever be boring, monotonous or below their skill level. As an employer we try to limit this, try to keep people engaged, however, at some point we are all going to be get bored, we are all going to have something about our job we don’t like and we are all going to feel underutilized and frustrated.
I have friends that have chased those dreams, found those careers and are doing what they love, are passionate about the field which they work in. Guess what???? They still have days where they are frustrated, underutilized, bored and working below their skill level. Days that they are “working”. It is the nature of exchanging our time and labor for pay.
I’m not saying we shouldn’t teach children to dream big and aim for jobs they love, but, that is a one prong approach which is missing another important component. In addition to dream big, let’s instill in our children the ability to find extraordinary in the ordinary. An internal happiness and sense of self as a contributor which will lead to passion and fulfillment in whatever work they do.