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Do What You Love! How to Identify & Pursue Your Passions

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My experience in nonprofit management includes fundraising and marketing for almost 15 years. People told me that I was very good at it. It was easy for me to do, paid the bills, and was a very pleasant career path.

Yet, it was not something I loved.

It was okay, I’m not going to lie. I gained a lot of knowledge and was able to work with great people. I envied the people who were energetic and happy to go to work. They loved what they did and could not wait to get to work. I aspired to be like them.

It was finally something I decided to do. I quit my job as a non-profit worker and began my own business in corporate communications. It’s been almost a year and, despite the bumpy road, I can confidently say that I love what I do.

Confucius stated that “choose the job you love” and that it would be a great way to make your passions a career. Here’s a step-by-step guide to identifying your passions and four ways you can turn them into a career.

1. Remember what you loved as a child

Sometimes our greatest passions are discovered in childhood only to be squashed by the pressures of adulthood. Think about what you were passionate about long before you needed to worry about your job. Writing? Science experiments? How to take care of people. It is important to get back in touch with your instincts in order to find your passion.

2. Eliminate money from the equation

What would you do if money was not an object? What would you do if money was not an issue? Spend your entire time with your family. Do you think it would be a good idea to start a charity organization to support women who have been abused? Money can’t be ignored. But don’t let financial pressures control your decisions. Financial security should be the ultimate goal of your career. However, if it is the driving force behind your decisions, you will likely not do what you love.

3. Ask your friends for feedback

Sometimes, you are not always the best judge of your happiness. Ask those closest to you if you are happy and what you enjoy doing the most. You might be surprised at their answers.

4. Browse the University Course Catalog

Take some time to look at the courses that interest you. What courses would you choose to study if you had the chance? Which courses do you think you could teach? What subjects are most frightening to you? Which ones are boring? These possibilities can help you find the topics and subjects you love.

5. Identify your professional hero

Which career do you want to model? You can reach her to find out more about her life and career, or you can read all about it if that’s impossible.

6. Consider what you enjoy and that you also do well.

Think about the lessons you have learned after you’ve completed these exercises. Write down the things you enjoy and are good at. Next, narrow down the list to three or four of your favorite things. It’s a good idea to keep it close at hand.

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Getting Started

It can be difficult to make your passion a career once you have an idea. These are the four steps that will help you make the transition.

1. Talk to a Career Counselor

Career counselors can help people figure out their career goals. They’ll be able to offer advice and guidance as well as insight and tools to help them pinpoint what you are passionate about. These resources are available to you.

2. Leverage Social Media

We live in a social society more than ever before. Once you have identified the things you love, you can get on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to connect with others who are interested in your interests. Join forums and read blogs to find out more about what it is like to do what your heart desires.

3. Save Money

Start saving once you are certain that this is the path you want. You will need to save a lot. You can make better financial decisions if you have more money in your bank account. The more money you have in the bank, the easier it will be to quit your job.

4. Just do it

You won’t know what your passion is unless you take the plunge. It’s just speculation until you try it. You can take small steps like enrolling in a class or jumping headfirst into entrepreneurship. All you have to do is get it. You won’t know unless you give it a shot.

I discovered my passion and I am grateful for it. These tips have been very helpful to me as I continue down this path. It’s vital that my work co es beed by the things I love most. If all of that happens, I have every hope that I will never need to work again.

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